Harry Potter fan and barista, Brian Thompson from Thousand Oaks, California, used his DIY skills to magically transform his bedroom into a Hogwarts-inspired space. Brian’s work was created using Styrofoam and thrift shop buys which allowed him to complete the transformation on a budget. He spent about 18 months meticulously collecting the items before finally spending two months working like a house elf to make the magical change in his home.
“On a barista budget, I knew it would be a challenge. I didn’t have any help putting it together aside from borrowing my dad’s tools and watching a few YouTube videos on how to lay vinyl flooring,” Brian told Buzzfeed.
Brian’s newly transformed room is a stunning tribute to J.K. Rowling’s books and the films that followed. The room takes inspiration from the Gryffindor Common Room and the Hogwarts Great Hall to create a truly magical new look. A chandelier features at the centre of the ceiling, floating candles are suspended all over the room, and sconces adorn the walls. Paintings, which sadly don’t move outside the wizarding world, are found all over the walls, mirrors are used to look like castle windows, there are pillars, and even a gnarly trees from the forbidden forest, moulded from chicken wire, in one corner.
The cosiness of the Gryffindor Common Room and Dorm Rooms are bought to Brian’s bedroom with a big red rug and chairs, a roaring fire, a comfy bed, the Hogwarts crest and loads of other tiny, thoughtful details.
The walls of the room recreate the bricks of Hogwarts Castle and are made of 400-500 individually cut foam shapes, each of which has been textured with a heat gun, sealed with caulking and painted grey. The grouting between each brick is created using rope, interwoven into the gaps and sealed with more caulking, a technique that saved Brian money and time on applying more caulking to the walls.
The crowning glory of the space though is the ceiling’s appearance of the night sky, which reflects the enchanted ceiling in the Hogwarts Grand Hall which is bewitched to look like the night sky, “I read about it in Hogwarts: A History.”
Brian Thompson created his personal favourite aspect of the room by painting the ceiling black as the night sky and covering it with LED light stings, purchased from Amazon, which he also painted black to blend in. Once the lights were stapled to the ceiling, Brain added white and grey spray-painted wisps of cloud to make it look even more like the sky.
Brian explained how he created the most genius aspect of this stunning illusion, which is how he made the sky look like it goes on forever. “I wanted to come up with a way to create an illusion that made the sky appear more expansive,” he said, “I walked by a sale on $5 door-length mirrors and purchased enough to line the perimeter of my room. I removed the frames and attached them to perimeter of my walls that meet the ceiling.”
The total cost of Brian’s amazing project was about $1,500 and he said that “The most valuable outcome I’ve had from sharing this project is the collective enthusiasm of sheer perseverance bringing you to the finish line.” What’s more, Brian has encourage other people to follow in his footsteps and try their own DIY Hogwarts transformations.
Now that it’s complete, Brian explained what motivated these magical project. “I remember the feeling I got when I first walked through the interior of Hogwarts in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios. It left me mesmerized,” he said, “The process of bringing that vision into reality was what fuelled my inspiration.”