Awards from the 2004 Museum of Miniatures Show
Indianapolis, IN U.S.A.

1st Place - Handcrafted Exhibit
Voted Most Popular Exhibit by the show's attendees

Featured in the
July 2005 issue of Miniature Collector

Featured in the
August 2006 issue of American Miniaturist



I was introduced to the Harry Potter series by my husband Vince just before the first movie hit theaters in Fall 2001. Since then, I've become a huge fan of J.K. Rowling's books as well as the movies released to date. My favorite character from the series is Professor Severus Snape, who teaches Potions (and later Defense Against the Dark Arts) at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry where Harry attends wizarding school. I am also a big fan of the Professor's "alter ego", British actor Alan Rickman, who made me love Professor Snape even more after bringing him to life on screen.

         

I began work on this project in March 2004 and completed it in August 2004. Almost everything you see has been handmade, if not entirely then in some fashion. The box that houses the Office was handmade by my husband using wood and fiberglass to simulate the dome over the back of the Professor's office. My husband also electrified the project, making the candles and fireplace flicker and the remaining lights burn steady using a single power source. Not an easy task, but I have the best electrician around so it's not surprising!

This project is not completely based on the book descriptions.  I based the majority of this roombox on the Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets film set where Harry and Ron are in Professor Snape's office, being scolded for flying the Weasley family's enchanted Ford Angelina to Hogwarts. Quite a few items have been added that weren't in the film nor in J.K. Rowling's magnificent books; they came solely from my imagination, just because I wanted them there.

I was so involved in this project that it produced another, a small vignette entitled "Alan Rickman's/Professor Snape's Dressing Room". It portrays actor Alan Rickman's dressing room on location at Alnwick Castle in England, which serves as Hogwarts School in the Harry Potter movies. Click on the following picture to see photos of this project.

The scale of the Professor's Office is 1/12; that is, 1" in miniature equals 1' in real life. Mini!Professor Snape is 6" tall, which would make him 6' tall in real life. The Office itself measures 18" wide by 21" deep by 13" high.

So come.  Take a walk down to the dungeons with me and step into Professor Snape's Office...


 

  

A full view of the office.




The left side of the office.

  




   Click here for movie view

The glass bottles and jars are filled with spices and beads; each of the 125 small potion bottles in this setting are filled and labeled.  There are an additional 18 empty bottles for a grand total of 143 small bottles. There's everything from Veritaserum to Gillyweed to Asphodel, as well as a few "special" potions I asked friends to name. You'll also find 28 large glass bottles of different sizes scattered around the room.

I built the shelves, and my husband made the candelabra. Cauldrons can be seen on the floor. I built the crates that are at the bottom of the window.

The windows are made of a Plexiglas-type material. I drew the "grates" on by hand using simulated window leading.




A better photo of the candelabra my husband made. When I say "made", I mean twisted the wires as well as electrified. I was elated when I saw it!   




   Professor Snape's Potion Master Certificate, signed by Albus Dumbledore.

::snark::




Click here for movie view

Still the left side of the office, but a little further in. All 79 books, including 5 student notebooks, are handmade; some from a kit, others by myself. Some books are even "authored" by friends!  The Victorian chair was made from a kit.

 
  




   Click here for movie view

Professor Snape at his desk. My husband made the candelabra behind the Professor, as well as the curved shelves lining the back of his office.

The Professor came to me as a bald, naked porcelain doll. (!)  I added his hair and styled it, and sewed his frock coat, pants and teaching robe.  There are a total of 33 "buttons" (actually beads) on his frock coat and 8 "buttons" on his pant legs - 4 on each side.

Note: the frock coat took the longest and was the hardest to make out of everything in this entire project. Professor Snape is awfully particular about his clothing, so it had to be as "perfect" as I could get it.




The Professor's desk is handmade, and I made the lampshade out of polymer clay to match the one in the movie.  Everything on this desk has been made by hand as well: the leather-bound books, tray of nuts (at least I think that's what it is!), gray hanging candle, hourglass, gold tray, maps, the Professor's quill and ink and student notebooks (which are most likely all being graded with a "T"). A friend of mine made the golden snitch.

 My favorite items on his desk are the Pensieve (taken from the description in the Harry Potter books and not the Goblet of Fire movie) and Professor Snape's ebony wand, which is resting on the Pensieve bowl.  Look closely and you'll see the Pensive lights up to simulate the glow!

  




   The full right side of Professor Snape's office.




Click here for movie view

The Professor's black leather Berger guest chairs. They were handmade from a kit. Lots and lots of cursing involved in making them. And unfortunately it didn't aid the process one bit...

  




   A closer view of one Professor Snape's Berger guest chairs.  A friend made the Nimbus 2000.  If you look closely, you'll see a copy of The Daily Prophet wizarding paper with the headline, "Harry Potter Saves The Day Again!"  The title will surely make the Professor cringe.




Everyone at Hogwarts needs an owl, even the Professor!   




   A solid crate resting on a table, both handmade, as are the books.




Oh, look! It's Professor Snape's Hogwarts School Yearbook from 1978. I wonder if he let James Potter or Sirius Black sign it?

  




   Another view of the right side of Professor Snape's  office.




A beautiful cross-stitch addition to the Professor's Office, made by a friend of mine from the U.K.  Thanks, Claire!

  




   I replaced the Victorian heating stove from the movie set with the fireplace from the books.  This fireplace is handmade as the original one was too big for this section of the office.  A jar of Floo Powder is on the mantel.




Click here for movie view

Professor Snape's experiment table. He's in the process of making Wolfsbane potion for his favorite werewolf.

I was thrilled when I found the small test tubes; they came all the way from Germany!

  




   The Slytherin crest was added to the work chairs because I felt the office needed a bit more Slytherin pride.




A bag from Slug & Jiggers Apothecary in Diagon Alley.   




   Another view of the experiment table.

You can see a few "lost" frock coat buttons (circled in yellow); there are 7 lost buttons scattered around Professor Snape's office. With all those buttons on his Victorian clothing, I figured he has to lose a few now and then!




A scrap of paper which was dropped on the floor containing instructions for making Wolfsbane potion. Can you see the Professor's notation, "For that bloody werewolf Lupin"? Obviously still not a fan of his old school chum, is he?   




And now for the darker side of Professor Snape's Office...

 

    

  


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Looking for more Harry Potter in miniature?
I've also done a miniature of "Spinner's End" -
click here to check it out!



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All names from the Harry Potter book series are trademarks of Joanne Kathleen Rowling and the TIME WARNER ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY, L.P. This site is a non-profit Web site that is in no way affiliated with J.K. Rowling, Scholastic Books, Carlsen Verlag, Bloomsbury Publishing or Warner Bros. All images and material related to the J.K. Rowling novels is copyright Scholastic Books (US), Carlsen Verlag (D), and Bloomsbury Publishing (UK). All material related to the "Harry Potter" films is Warner Bros.