Sugary Creations and Decorating Schools: Art Prevails with These “Harry Potter”-Inspired Works

We know that the Wizarding World fandom is full of creative people. Recently, a professional baker and a group of elementary school students alike have brought the magical world of Harry Potter to life with amazing and entertaining attention to detail.

The Great British Bake Off contestant Terry Hartill, who made a gingerbread Hogwarts Castle for the holiday season, was commissioned to make a gingerbread Hagrid’s hut.


Terry Hartill Gingerbread Hagrid's Hut Creation

“The Great British Bake Off”‘s Terry Hartill created a gingerbread Hagrid’s hut model. (Credit: Tim Sturgess)


Hartill has said that his previous work as an engineer and ceramicist has contributed to his skills for these creations. The hut is 12″ tall and 33 by 20″ in diameter. Harthill delved into the complexities of creating such artwork.

The roof tiles and brickwork are all individually made. There are literally thousands of parts involved in the construction. I make moulds and hand[-]cut parts [that] go into the sculpting of the cake. I like things to be detailed, and this is really intricate cake art. […] When I made the castle [Hogwarts], I spent three weeks making the moulds and then about 50 to 60 hours creating it, and it was all made out of gingerbread and icing.

Though not a Harry Potter fan, Hartill pours his heart into these pieces, surprising the film-based promotional company that hired him to make the creations.

Things have to be right if I’m going to do it. I do extreme baking.

The money earned from the project was donated to a charity close to Hartill and his late wife, Barnardo’s – a charity to support vulnerable children.

The importance of art is not lost. In fact, on the other side of the globe, local mothers Haliey Judd and Heather Parkinson have led the charge in an art initiative for Oakwood Elementary School and Pioneer Elementary School in southern Idaho. This year, the Wizarding World has come to life within the schools’ halls.


Southern Idaho Schools Decorate with a Magical Twist

Southern Idaho schools Oakwood and Pioneer Elementary incorporate “Harry Potter” art projects. (Source: akwood Elementary School and Pioneer Elementary School)


Each class participated in bringing the Harry Potter books to life. A paper Whomping Willow and a crashed Ford Anglia with Harry and Ron screaming inside can be seen in a wide hallway. Candles and jack-o’-lanterns are suspended from the ceiling; paper windows line the walls to look like the interior of a castle; flying brooms and handmade wands decorate the once-empty spaces. Lights and music are added for ambience.

Pioneer Elementary School principal Dan Wendt explained the children’s excitement about such a project.

The students were excited to see the art. Excitement continued to build through the week when wanted posters of wizards and witches were posted. The amazing art week culminated on Thursday with a Harry Potter dress-up day. Many of the Pioneer students and staff dressed up and used their wands every chance they got to cast spells. It was wonderful to see the kids excited about art (and about reading Harry Potter). I look forward to the art show next year.

Since arts are not highlighted in the schools’ curricula, the annual art show allows students who don’t excel in other areas to shine. It started four years ago with an art show and a school auction to fund it. Since this year’s auction brought in so much money, some of the funds are going to help put art supplies in the classrooms.

Principal Wendt expressed his enthusiasm for this art inclusion.

Research has shown that students who are involved in the arts do better in math, reading, and critical thinking. They also show gains in cognitive ability, motivation, concentration, and confidence. So I was excited at the opportunity to have a time to focus on art at Pioneer.

Have you made any Harry Potter creations? Comment below.


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Jillian Loveday

I grew alongside Harry since I was 12 years old. It is such a treat to be a part of the best book club any Harry Potter fan could ask for. I graduated in 2016 with a Creative Writing degree and since then I have been doing freelance writing on the side. Outside of the literary world, I love the outdoors, hiking, and binge-watching Parks and Rec for the billionth time.