A dad-of-four has amazed wizarding fans by making this amazing tiny version of the entire Harry Potter world — in his living room.
Tony Rigby, 47, said it all started when he spotted a character in his Christmas village arrangement looked just like giant Hagrid.
He used some clay to transform the figure – and before he knew it he’d totally recreated the giant’s hut from cardboard boxes, quick dry clay and paint – in amazing detail.
Married business consultant Tony has been working on the project for more than a year and has so far made the Forbidden Forest and Hogsmeade train station.
He also created Diagon Alley – the cobblestoned wizarding shopping alley – and Hogsmeade Village, complete with the student’s favourite shops.
The Burrow – the ramshackle home of the Weasley’s – took him a couple of months and he’s chipping away at Hogwarts.
Talented and totally self taught Tony has made the Knight Bus, the Whomping Willow Gringott’s Bank, a tiny Quidditch pitch and even the Weasley’s cabbage patch.
Almost all his incredible creations are in 1/87th scale and include tiny characters such as Buckbeak, Dobby and even Hagrid’s pink umbrella in perfect detail.
Tony joked that it’s his version of a “mid life crisis” and expects that his creation will take another year or so to complete.
He’s hoping to add the Dursley’s home and Platform 9 3/4 , and eventually put it on show somewhere it could bring joy – like a hospital or retirement home.
Tony, from Bluffdale, Utah, said: “It’s a bit of a midlife crisis. That’s the only way I get permission to take over the house.
“I think it’s one of those things I had to do.
“I have a wonderful family. I was looking for another measure of fulfillness in life. That’s not to say that I don’t get that from my family because I do.
“But this is something creative and I was looking for a creative outlet to enhance my enjoyment of life.
“I wasn’t as upbeat about life – everyone has good days and bad days. I wouldn’t say I was depressed but I wasn’t finding as much fulfillment in life as I wanted.
“I joke that it’s a bit of a midlife crisis for me. Some people buy a Corvette – and some people just make a Harry Potter world in their living room. I’m the latter.
“Thankfully I have a very patient and tolerant wife who lets me do it.”
Tony, who had previously made a Christmas village for his family, started the project last September.
“I had a little figure and I could see Hagrid in him,” he said.
“I got some clay and made him into a Hagrid figure and I couldn’t help myself. I thought then ‘I have to do everything now’.
“I work from home most days. I have time that I can dedicate to things, so I started doing a little bit at a time.
“I did Hagrid’s hut – 2ft by 2ft square and I thought ‘wow I could expand this’ so I did the Forbidden Forest.
“I was hooked. I knew I had to do the whole world.
“My wife was kind of scared. She could see much space it was going to take up. Then I told her I thought Hogwarts could be 6ft across. Then she got really nervous.
“I even sold a sofa in our living room to make more room and now I totally take over that room.
“I spread it out over months because I have a real job and obviously spend free time with family. But this kind of has been the focus of my free time.”
First he spent two weeks making Hagrid’s Hut before embarking on a project to make the adjacent Forbidden Forest.
He then turned his attention to Hogsmeade train station and then Diagon Alley, which took him three months.
“That took a long time because of all the little figures,” he said.
“For some of them I used Christmas decorations and gave them a makeover.”
The Burrow – the ramshackle home of the Weasley’s – took him a couple of months, and then he started work on Hogsmeade Village, including all the shops and homes.
And during the entire project he has been working on the pièce de résistance – Hogwarts, the school of witchcraft and wizardry.
For the first time, he has been using 3D printing to make the raw unfinished larger pieces of the castle which he then renovates and adds to.
“All the rest has been from scratch but Hogwarts is so complicated and intricate, I have been doing that with a friend who has helped me with the 3D printer,” he said.
“I have the Great Hall and I’m through with the large tower.
“I have got the viaduct done.
“For the Great Hall for example you can see the rafters with the little gargoyles.
“I have done windows that look like etched glass and will be lit up.
“There are little battery powered lights that flicker like a torch.”
He said he’s always loved Harry Potter because it lifts his spirits.
“I’ve always loved it. I love the books and the movies. I’ve always been artistic. I found I love doing this.”
He is still to complete the rest of the world – including Kings Cross platform 9 3/4 and the rest of Hogwarts.
He said he’ll probably also make locations like Harry’s aunt and uncle’s house and of course all the main characters.
“I’ve done most of the figures,” he said.
“I’ve done all of the main characters – Harry, Ron and Hermione – three of the Weasleys, tiny little Dobby.
“I have to finish the characters before I get so old I can’t see them because they are so, so small.”
He said his favourite character to make was Hagrid because it ignited his passion for the project.
“It just lit a fire inside of me to do everything else,” he said.
“My favourite area to make has been Diagon Alley because it took so much effort, more than anything else.
“With great effort usually comes great reward.
“For me the devil is in the detail and I love adding in tiny details, like Hagrid’s pink umbrella for example.
“I go back and read the books looking for little details to add.
“It started with my own children. I didn’t tell them all of the details I had put in and the two younger children I will see them sitting on the floor looking for the hidden details. That has been fun.
“It has kept my childhood alive for me.”
For the characters, he often uses a readymade figure – such as a Christmas decoration – which he modifies with clay and paint, and cuts to size.
Some the buildings are made with cardboard skeletons, and he uses air dry clay to add stone and brick detail, with balsa wood for the window frames and wooden features.
Some of the materials are recycled every day items, but others he gets from local hobby shops.
“There is nothing special that has gone into this,” he said.
He has taken over one of their living rooms – selling a sofa to make more room – and a bedroom to make and store his magical world.
The family are planning on moving next year, and Tony has his heart set on a new home with a massive basement for his creation.
Tony, who is married to Sanetta, 43, has daughters Aysha, 18, Alexis, 16, and London, 11, as well as son Boston, 13.
The entire thing is 1/87 scale, apart from Hogsmeade which is 1/64 scale.
He said he thinks it will take one or two more years to complete but admits he might never be done – and might keep adding more and more parts of the Harry Potter world.
“Now I have this idea of it helping a childrens’ hospital or assisted living place, that has given me a new found enthusiasm to get it really finished,” he said.
“My wife I’m pretty sure sees it as one big dust collector, so she’s ok if I get rid of it.
“She’s very tolerant.”
Tony shares his work with fans on www.instagram.com/tonyrigbyart