Making Magic Wands

Wands on display at Aug 28th meeting.
Wands on display at Aug 28th meeting.

Tools

A good exacto or craft knife: always be careful when using sharp objects.

Tweezers: you may need them when handling small objects such as beads, sequins or stickers.

Small containers for paint: empty dessert cups (puddings, yogurt, fruit…) or chip canister lids, they may come in handy when you only use a small amount of paint or you need to mix a special colour.

Different size paint brushes: you may want finer brushes for more detailed work.

Different grade sandpaper: the higher the number, the finer the grade, the smoother the finish.  These will  be useful when working with wood dowels or branches.

1″ hook:  when working with wood dowels or branches, screw it in the wide end of the wand so you can hang it to dry.

Basic materials

Wand: you can use almost anything you want, wood dowels you buy in a store, fallen branches you cut down to size, wood mixing spoon with the round end cut off, even large knitting needles will work.  Most wands are between 12 and 15 inches long.  If you use a fallen branch, let it dry first and I suggest you use the knife to whittle away the bark.  Depending on the look you’re going for, a branch has more organic curves to it.

Craft foam: 2mm sheets come in different colours and textures and can be used to add details to your wand.

Acrylic craft paint: they can be found almost anywhere but keep in mind that if you use metallic finish paints, they don’t cover as well and you should use a flat base paint of the same colour as an undercoat.  You can also use glitter paint if you want a sparkly finish.

Latex Varnish

When it comes to paints and varnish I prefer to use water based products: they clean up better, they dry faster and you don’t have to worry as much about the smell or toxic fumes.

Different kinds of glue: depending on what you are gluing, you may want to use white glue or a hot glue gun.

Decorations

This is where you can go crazy, anything goes.

Ribbons, shiny cords, lace or leather.

Stickers: whatever you like but stay away from puffy stickers because they don’t stay curled around the wand.

Beads, sequins or small gemstones

Precut foam pieces: you can find all sorts of shapes but keep in mind that most shapes are seasonal.

Feathers: you can find bags of these in craft stores in natural or dyed colours.

You can find examples of all of these in the picture above.

Now that you have what you need you can let your imagination go.  You can make a wand to go with a specific costume, you may have a theme in mind or you can see a picture of something and think that would make a great looking wand.

Instructions

It’s always a good idea to spread some newspaper pages to work on.

First you round off the tip of the wand with the knife and sandpaper.

Once you have the shape you want, you apply the first coat of paint.  Let dry as needed before applying a second or third coat.

When you have the colour you want you can start to decorate.  This is where the tweezers may come in handy.  If you are gluing things on the wand, be careful and only do a small section at a time, less chance of getting your decorations crooked.

You can always add a small crystal at the tip of your wand or a bobble at the larger end.  For this you can use anything you want such as marbles or small Christmas ornaments.

When your wand is completely decorated you apply the varnish to seal everything and make it shiny.  I recommend at least two coats but that is up to you and the look you’re going for.

Just remember to be careful, not to hurt yourself or make a mess!

Have fun!