Growing up in Darjeeling, Megha Thapa, 23, enjoyed arts and crafts as a child, moving on to now creating wands for fellow Potterheads. She talks to us about what makes these Harry Potter wands special.
Tell us a little about yourself.
I’m 23 years old and I am from a small town called Kurseong situated in the Darjeeling district of West Bengal. I finished my schooling from Himali Boarding School, Kurseong and Mahbert High School and recently graduated from Southfield College Darjeeling with an honours in English Literature; ever since then, I have been putting my heart and soul into my passion for photography.
What do you enjoy about Harry Potter? What level of Pottermania would you peg yourself at?
The genius behind the writing is what amazes me every time and that’s one among the many reasons I love and enjoy the Harry Potter series. On a level of 1-10, I would rate my Pottermania level a 9 ¾!
Tell us some interesting facts about wands in Harry Potter books that fans would like to hear?
The wand facts online are what make these interesting to me. The fact that “the wand chooses the wizard” amazes me by leaps and bounds. I came across a wiki page which stated how wands and their owners aligned with the Celtic tree calendar. This shows each month and the wood that goes with it, like the Trio’s and how Harry, whose birthday is on the July 31, owned a wand made out of holly since July falls on the Holly cycle. How Granger, whose birthday is on September 19, has a wand made out of vine and Ron, whose birthday is on the March 1 has a wand made out of ash wood. There are more amazing and mindboggling facts online and I recommend every Potterhead to look them up.
Growing up, did you enjoy crafts and making things with your hands?
Yes, yes and yes! I love everything art and craft. Especially craft. I grew up watching a lot of art shows, such as MAD by Rob on Pogo, Art Attack and a few others I cannot remember the names of, but I did watch a lot of them and tried making my own version of the crafts. I still love watching shows like these to this day.
What are the different wands that you make?
I make almost all character wands, and to name a few — Dumbledore’s (The Elder Wand ), Harry’s, Hermionre’s, Ron’s, Luna’s, Neville’s, Lupin, Snape, Ginny, Sirius Black. I also make Pottermore wands and personalised ones. The wands are 13 inches long and If you ask me what goes into making a wand, I’d say magic! Lots of hard work and genuine love for the art.
Who are the wands meant for? Are you aware of children’s reactions to these?
The wands are meant for Potterheads of any age group but my clients are mostly millennials like me who and are diehard fans. So I relate to the reactions each one has when they receive the wands. I’ve had only a few customers aged around 13-15 but the ones I’ve had have absolutely loved their wands. The wands are used as collectibles, cosplay merch and are sent out as birthday gifts or party favours.
How did you start making the wands?
My venture “wandsbymeghamax” is something that had never crossed my mind. It was like a leap in the dark. I started by making the wands for myself. As a Potterhead for a really long time, one develops the urge to own anything related to the wizarding world. For me, wands were something I really wanted to own. There were people willing to buy the wands before I even had a store or website to sell them in. It began with requests from people I had known on social media and recommendations from others. Three years later, I finally started my venture, which is also helping me achieve my dreams of photography.