Dad Builds Replica Of Diagon Alley While In Lockdown To Surprise His Daughter

In what has been a crazy year, we look back at the times we’ve spent in quarantine and ask ourselves ‘what have we accomplished so far?’ Many of us probably just ‘stayed at home’ with nothing else to do than binge-watch and binge-eat. But this dad from London made the best of the unfortunate situation by building a Diagon Alley replica for his daughter. So, eat your hearts out, Potterheads!

Dylan, who goes by the name Ella’s Dad on social media, thought of surprising his daughter with an awesome present for her birthday. One day, when he was standing inside Ella’s wardrobe, a brilliant idea suddenly struck him. The room appeared to him like a mini street since they’re living in an old Victorian terrace house. And as a huge fan of Harry Potter, he thought of building a Diagon Alley replica inside Ella’s wardrobe.

 

Dad Builds A Diagon Alley Replica Inside His Daughter’s Wardrobe

 

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The wardrobe has a room space of around 13 feet by 4.6 feet. So, it would be a challenge to fit all the iconic wizarding shops inside the wardrobe. And with the lockdown in effect, he would have all the time to finish the project just in time for his daughter’s birthday.

He mostly used wood and medium-density fibreboard to construct the shops. His friend, Rob from R Concepts, helped him by cutting the shopfronts out. Dylan then built the frames and painted everything. He used old photo frames, which were given to him by his neighbors, for the shop windows. For the flooring, he used linoleum sheets to give the look and feel of a real street. He has to look up on the internet for other essential items such as wallpapers, street lamps, door knobs, ornamental bells, and more.

 

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Dylan took two months to complete the Diagon Alley replica inside the wardrobe. And he did all that while keeping it secret from his daughter. On the day of Ella’s birthday, he invited her to play hide-and-seek when she got home from school. He knew Ella would hide inside her wardrobe and that would be when the big surprise is going to be revealed.

“After a few goes, she decided to hide in the wardrobe which had a curtain behind it,” Dylan said. “She didn’t find it straight away, but she also knew I had made something for her so her first words were, ‘I can see something in here,’ then silence as she walked in and then, ‘Can we keep this here forever?!'”

 

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As Ella walked on the Lino-floored street, she couldn’t hide her excitement as she looked around the shops of the Diagon Alley replica. There’s Ollivanders Shop, Flourish & Blotts Bookstore, Madam Malkin’s Robe Shop, Eyelop’s Owl Emporium, Quality Quidditch Supplies, and Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlour. Each shop even features detailed interior based off the movie. Dylan also placed gifts inside each shop which Ella eagerly opened as she explored the magical place.

“We played for the rest of the weekend, for example, making ice cream in the ice cream shop with a machine I found. I also dressed up as Hagrid which was hilarious for us both as my accent was terrible, but we went back through the wardrobe to the muggle world as Ella and Hagrid and took cushions from her living room for her reading nook above her bookshop on Diagon Alley,” he said.

Dylan also revealed that he is planning to add another shop in the Diagon Alley replica for Christmas. Will it be the Gringotts Bank? Or Slug & Jigger’s Apothecary perhaps? Follow Ella’s Dad on Instagram to find out.

 

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Learn more about Dylan’s ‘magical’ project on the video below

Source: Instagram | YouTube