Thursday, July 19, 2012

Closet Turned Harry Potter Hideaway

There are two things all kids love:
1. cool hiding spots
2. reading
Okay, so maybe all kids don't love reading. But my two little nerds do, and they read a lot.
They read so much, I have actually had to utter the phrase, "Put that book down and come and watch television with the family." They love it so much, I can take away their reading privileges when they misbehave {turns out, they just didn't care too much about losing TV or video games}.

So when Hunter's 8th birthday rolled around, we decided to turn an extra closet in his room into a Harry Potter-inspired hideaway. Our whole family loves Harry Potter; heck, my ringtone is the movie theme song. We knew this was something Hunter would enjoy for years to come, and we all had fun planning and working on this project.

 Hunter is lucky enough to have two closets in his bedroom. One holds clothes, the other generally holds mess.

Exhibit A: the before shot.

He had already turned this space into a pseudo- book nook, but it had a tendency to get messy.
So we cleared everything out and started fresh. Hunter, who loves all things astronomical,  had requested a starry night sky on the walls.
I gave the walls and ceiling a coat of navy paint {Starless Night by Behr}. Beyond that point, I was stumped. I had no idea how to proceed. So, I did what I always do: I winged it.
I remembered seeing this post from Carmel at Our Fifth House. That sounded like a reasonably simple idea, so I decided to give it a try. I mixed a small amount of the wall paint with a few drops of white craft paint.
 Then, using a damp rag, I swirled the paint around to make the walls look more "atmospheric."

Then came the fun/crazy part. Using a tiny little paintbrush and some metallic silver paint from Martha Stewart {at Home Depot}, I painted stars, moons, and planets on every inch of the walls and ceiling.
{Excuse the shadowy pictures. It's hard getting good light in a closet.}
 I had to go all Michelangelo for the ceiling, and my neck and shoulders are punishing me for it.
Chris installed an outlet and hung an outdoor lantern {also from Home Depot} on the wall. The lantern was kind of the tipping point as far as going toward a Harry Potter theme. Hunter took one look at it and deemed it a "Hogwarts lantern" so we just went with that idea. Besides, my son lives and breathes Harry Potter. He is fully expecting to get a Hogwarts acceptance letter on his 11th birthday, so it was a natural choice.
I added a quote from one of the films using a fairly simple technique. I printed out the words in the size and font I wanted, then went over the back side of the print-out with chalk. Next, I taped them to the wall, like so:
I went over each letter with a pencil,  and it left a chalk outline on the wall. Then I was able to just paint right over the chalk.
 I messed up the spacing a bit, but perfection's not really my thing.

We purchased a kid-sized chair at Target and filled the shelves with Hunter's favorite Potter-paraphernalia.
 A Union Jack pillow from Bed, Bath, and Beyond seemed like a fitting addition.
 I'm obviously no muralist, but the stars were quite fun to do. I finally had to stop myself from adding any more. I think I would have continued tweaking my starscapes forever otherwise.
 Most of the accessories we already owned, but the feather we just found this week at Target. It was too perfect to pass up.

This was a really fun project, made even more so since Hunter absolutely loves his Harry Potter hideaway. Quite often, despite the beautiful summer weather outside, I find him curled up in his chair, enjoying a book. That, alone, makes it all worth while. 

I'll be linking up here:
A Bowl Full of Lemons: One Project at a Time
The Shabby Nest
At The Picket Fence: Inspiration Friday
My Romantic Home: Show and Tell Friday


  1. Amazing as usual. Hunter is a lucky boy. What's next?

    Love from your untalented Grandmother. xo

    1. Thanks, Grandma! Caitlin claims her room is next, but we'll have to see about that!

  2. WOW ... I don't know the first thing about HP ...but this is amazing ... what a beautiful job...I wouldn't mind curling up in that little blue chair ~~ but maybe with a garden book ... ! great job JR! <3 just me!

    1. If I could squeeze my bootie into that chair, I'd be in there reading for sure! Glad you liked it! ;-)

  3. Oh this is just amazing! You did an excellent job! I would so love to read in this HP hideaway.

  4. This hideaway is nothing short of amazing! I really wish my kids would jump on the HP bandwagon. It would be so much fun! I'm your newest follower. I hope you will check out my blog when you have a chance and follow if you like what you see.

    Great work!
    Colleen from

  5. Wow what a great space! I love every detail. I can't wait to show it to my Harry loving daughter.


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