Life By The Seat Of My Pants

BooooOOOoooooook (Hocus Pocus Spell Book Replica)

Posted on: August 22, 2012

To order a Hocus Pocus Spell Book Replica, please email me at Thank you!


Hocus Pocus is one of my all time FAVORTIE movies! We watch it every Halloween without fail and someday I WILL make one of those witch costumes.

Christopher and I decided to watch Hocus Pocus last week and I made the offhand comment that we should make Book. Before I had even finished the sentence, technique ideas flooded my brain and I exclaimed “We should make BOOK!!!!”

So… we did!

You can view the video with a full picture tutorial below.

Thank the Spirits for HDTV and a pause button! I have scrutinized this book for days and tried to get every detail as close as I possibly could.

I found the perfect book to alter at my local thrift store. I thinned some of the pages and hollowed the middle of the book.

Next I started sculpting. I made the first knotted snake on a base using polymer clay. I started making the second snake but it was not tuning out as good as the first, so after some mental debating, I decided it would be much better to have a mold. I mixed up some Amazing Mold Putty® and created a mold for my knotted snakes. Since Amazing Mold Putty is oven safe, I was able to fire my polymer clay right in the mold which helped a lot! I made the two long snakes and the basic eyeball shape, also using polymer clay then fired them all in the oven for about an hour.

While the snakes were baking, I started working on the spine of the book. I sculpted the fingers with polymer clay, then I debated on how to fire them. If I pulled them off of the book, I risked ruining the shape and fit. If I left them on the book, I risked setting my house on fire. I decided a more precise replica was worth the risk, do after much dowsing with water, I put the book in the oven.

The original Book has an intricate clasp, with a circlet around the eyeball on the front, an animal claw on the back and a braided piece connecting them in the middle. I needed the clasp to be sturdy and hold up to regular wear and tear, so back to the polymer clay I went. I created the circlet and added a gem on the end. I had to make sure if fit exactly around the eye, yet still leave room for the stitches. Once that was finished, I sculpted the animal claw for the back, again leaving room for the stitches. I added tiny hinges to each piece, and then created the connecting braid to fit. All of the pieces were fired then painted with a coat of black, then layers of metallic silver to create the look of aged metal.

The next step was adding the stitches. I decided to use Creative Paperclay® instead of polymer for the stitches because I really didn’t want to have to bake the book two more times. I added Paperclay logs, and then sculpted the cuts and thread holes with a tool.

I painted the eyeball and attached it to the cover of the book, then using more Creative Paperclay® I sculpted the eye lids and creases of the eye.

I needed to create the look of skin, so I covered the entire book with layers of tissue paper until I reached the desired look. Next came three coats of paint in flesh tones and titan buff, and that was just the under painting!

I still needed to darken and age the book, so I created several different washes of brown paint and just layered it on until I was happy with the color and look of the book.

While the cover was drying, I painted all of the large pieces, first with a coat of black, then layers of metallic silver to match the clasp. I made the base plates for the long snakes by embossing chipboard, then painting them to match the other pieces.

The stitching was the trickiest part for me because no matter what thread I used, nothing looked right and everything kept raveling. It wasn’t until I tried using help cord that I got the look I wanted. I spent four and a half hours cutting and gluing each individual thread on the book.

Once everything was set and dry, I glued all of the large pieces to the book using E-6000. I let it set for a full 24 hours before moving on to the final step.

For the finishing touch, I added actual spells from the movie to the front of the book. I printed my pages, soaked them in a tea bath for aging, and then glued them in using gel medium. I had left a few original book pages in the front of the book, so I glued one spell page to the front and back of each of those pages.

And so, after five days of pretty steady work, that is how BoooOOOooook came to life  😀

I love, love, LOVE the way Book turned out and I hope you enjoyed the tutorial. You can see more photos in the video slideshow below.  Feel free to ask any questions in the comments section.

I have decided to make and sell these replicas, as well as the eyeballs, so if you are interested in purchasing one, feel free to email me at

27 Responses to "BooooOOOoooooook (Hocus Pocus Spell Book Replica)"

Love love love. That’s it. I love it.

Im very impressed, great job!

wow this is absolutely cool,i love it. You said something about making and selling. I am very curious.

If someone wanted to purchase a replica, I would be happy to make one for them. If you would like to talk more about it you can email me.

I am interested in buying one.

Great Shaina,
You can email me at for more information on purchasing one of the replicas 😀

Wow that is amazing !

This was a great tutorial! I am gonna have to try this too! Hocus Pocus is a classic.

Reblogged this on Frugal Frights and Delights and commented:
Hocus Pocus is one of my favorites. Thanks to this great tutorial, I’m going to make this awesome book.

Edie your book is over the top!! What a fantastic piece and an incredible job! I love it!

this is totally totally fabulous!!!!!!!!

Well, *this* is just fabulous. 🙂

This is totally something I would do as well. I love this. Brilliant! Genius

WOW – THAT is amazing!! SO well done!!!

wow, that looks incredible, I love the clasp claw and the snake, it screams scary. You nailed it on this project. Fantastic!

WOW! The detail on this is amazing, you could do props for theater clubs and different haunted attractions. This tutorial was VERY impressive not to mention fun. Happy Halloween in advance.

My cousins and i watch this movie every year at halloween time. Weve being doing so for about 7yrs. Now a couple of us have kiddos and i thought how great to add a couple of activities to our movie nifht and scrapbook them for our kids when theyre older so they can continue the tradition. How much do you charge for a book?

Turning one of these into a memory book is such an awesome idea! This would be the perfect place to scrapbook those memories and then it could be passed down for the next generation to continue! What a wonderful tradition that would be ❤
If you are interested in purchasing a book, you can email me at ediebug7701@live
I am currently working on one that was purchased, but I could still have one ready for you before Halloween. We can talk about customizing it so you would have plenty of pages to scrapbook on 😀 I look forward to hearing from you!

[…] can view the full tutorial, including tons of photos and a video, in the original post. This is one of my favorite things I have ever created and it is now the centerpiece on my coffee […]

I love this!

Are you still making these to sell?

Yes I do still make the Books! 😀 If you would like more info, please email me at

I LOVE THIS! I’m going to be Winifred for Halloween this year and have been trying to find ideas on how to make the book (I’m thinking of making it into a purse). I was wondering, could you do all the sculpting with the Paperclay? Amazing AMAZING job on this!

Hi Andrea,
Thank you so much! You absolutely COULD make everything in Paperclay, I just worry about the durability of it. I love the polymer because it is very strong. If you decide to make a book, I would love to see it! You can email me at

You’re welcome. I was wondering if it would affect the durability. I will definitely share the finished project! I’m going supply shopping this afternoon. 🙂

how many spell pages come in the replica?

@Lexi – I would have to count to be sure, but it is either 8 or 10 single pages. However, I attach them to the bound book pages, so it ends up being 4 or 5 turn-able pages.

I would love to hear what you have to say. Leave me a comment :)

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