In this Harry Potter memorabilia guide we cover everything from how to start your collection to why the items are so valuable. You’ll also learn about early edition books, custom artwork and even Harry Potter LEGO! Continue reading below…
- 1 Why Collect Harry Potter Memorabilia
- 2 Huge Memorabilia Collections
- 3 Some Notable Props and Collectibles
- 4 What to Collect
- 5 Conclusion
I started my Harry Potter collection when I was just a kid and the books were still coming out. Every time a holiday or birthday came around, I added to my collection: figurines of all shapes and sizes, a plush Hedwig complete with my Hogwarts acceptance letter, LEGO sets, and endless decorations for my room.
At the end of a long day, there’s nothing better than retreating to my magical sanctuary, rereading my favorite books or perhaps listening to the Harry Potter and the Sacred Text podcast while surrounded by over a decade of memories.
With all the HP merchandise out there, it can be overwhelming to narrow down the options and decide what you want to collect. In this guide, I’ll go through some of the major collectible categories, from home décor to movie replicas, from rare special editions to clothing.
Why Collect Harry Potter Memorabilia
There are so many reasons to get into collecting HP memorabilia. For example, you might want…
- To have tangible reminders of what you love most about the books.
- To curate a unique (and perhaps even valuable!) collection.
- To create an enchanting Potter-themed living space.
- To enjoy building LEGO sets or playing board games with your friends.
Whatever your reasons, this hobby can be incredibly rewarding. Over the years, I’ve made many friends through our shared connection to the Harry Potter books. The HP universe is incredibly rich and can be enjoyed in so many ways.
Huge Memorabilia Collections
Ready to get inspired? Take a look at this article on an enormous Harry Potter memorabilia collection. It belongs to a Mexico City lawyer who poured all his bonus checks into amassing his record-breaking collection.
Watch an interview with him here. As he explains, his collection grew organically, as he acquired items that he liked and that exemplified the connection he felt with the HP books. He’s got an array of sweaters, scarves, ties, replicas, and figurines—the list goes on.
Next thing he knew, his collection was too big to contain in a single room, prompting him to take his HP hobby even more seriously by making an inventory and acquiring items more systematically.
Now, most of us won’t pursue our HP passion quite that much, but I think it’s fun to goggle at other people’s impressively vast collections and get an idea of what’s out there. There really are so many different things to collect, depending on your own interests.
Here is a Harry Potter room tour by YouTuber The Bakeey, who walks us through her magical room, which is jampacked with HP paraphernalia, even noting where she got all the different items. She’s got posters and figurines galore, and even a Harry Potter skateboard. I’m a big fan of her handmade Knockturn Alley sign and might try my luck at making one of my own!
Another fabulous HP room tour: This one by Laura Mugford, who has a penchant for Funko Pop! figurines and Hogwarts-themed banners.
Some Notable Props and Collectibles
Occasionally you hear about film props going up for sale, often reaching some fantastical sums. For example, Daniel Radcliffe used a fiberglass broomstick in the first film, and this prop was then sold before the film even came out.
In 2012, Hagrid’s wooden crossbow was auctioned off to a lucky buyer for a cool $25,000.
In conjunction with the second film, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Warner Bros. made a couple hundred life-size Dobby replicas; these are excellent collectors’ items and are now worth quite a bit.
Committed Potterheads can even hope to get their hands on items connected to J.K. Rowling herself. For instance, Rowling often sketches her characters, and these unique drawings show us how she originally envisioned them coming to life. She also personally designed a charm bracelet to be auctioned off for charity.
What to Collect
Rare and Early Edition Books
You might think that only super old books can become rare and valuable—but Harry Potter is precocious in that regard. The beloved book series might only date back to the 1990s, but rare first editions and signed copies often fetch big prices.
Online book retailer AbeBooks has written an excellent guide on collecting valuable HP books. Some of their major takeaways:
- Books signed by J.K. Rowling are generally quite valuable. Signed copies are typically easier to come by in the earlier books (1 through 3) since Rowling was doing more signings then.
- Got a big budget? Spring for a hardcover first-edition first-printing copy of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, first published in 1997. These can command prices in the five figures!
- Other first editions are valuable too, especially if they’re signed.
- You can also purchase an entire set. For instance, here is a set of first-edition, first-printing books in deluxe bindings, the first volume of which is signed.
- When Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows came out, J.K. Rowling signed 1700 copies for lucky fans with tickets to the book launch; those copies are now quite valuable, selling for three- or four-figure sums.
If you’re collecting these early editions for their value, then make sure to do your research before committing to a purchase. As a starting point, read through the AbeBooks guide or watch this video, which provides ballpark price ranges and things to look out for.
What if you LOVE Harry Potter and want a nice collection of all the books, but just don’t have the extra cash to secure an ultra-rare signed copy or first edition?
Take a look at some of the nice but still affordable special editions. For example: Harry Potter: The Illustrated Collection. This set includes the first three books with intricately detailed illustrations by Jim Kay. These books are great fun to read with children who can follow along with the illustrations and really be drawn into the magical world.
Another visually appealing option: these books with custom printed dust jackets by Juniper Books. The colorful covers will look amazing on your shelves. Juniper Books offers many different jacket options; you can choose to coordinate colors with your favorite House or to feature the Hogwarts Express.
Finally, if you want something simple and classic, you can look into getting a complete hardcover boxed set.
Harry Potter LEGO Sets
LEGO is one of my favorite ways to express my love of all things Potter! There’s something so relaxing about settling in on a rainy day to sip some pumpkin juice, put on an HP movie in the background, and build something with my hands.
I finally got the Hogwarts Castle, (with its 6000+ pieces!) and am so looking forward to putting it together. This set has incredible attention to detail. It includes the Whomping Willow (with flying Ford Anglia), the Chamber of Secrets, the potions classroom, and the Great Hall, complete with torches and stained glass windows. There are also 4 minifigures and 27 microfigures.
This LEGO set really can’t be beat; you can tell the designers had a blast figuring out how to construct all the little details that diehard fans will appreciate.
Personally, I collect Harry Potter LEGO just for fun and personal enjoyment, but some LEGO sets can amass real value over time. If you’re interested in LEGOs as investment pieces, check out the website Brickpicker, which tracks the ever-fluctuating values of LEGO sets.
I’ve recently enjoyed purchasing some more personalized HP items for myself. Online platforms such as Zazzle make it easy to find unique designs to upgrade your everyday objects, such as stationary, notepads, tote bags, hats, and binders.
On a quick browse through the site, I’ve found this striking Phoenix notebook, stunning Hogwarts poster, adorable baby Mandrake mug, and Luna Lovegood postcard; these designs can be applied to other items as well!
If you’re looking for unique and artsy items, want HP-themed cards or invitations, or are in search of the perfect gift for the Potterhead in your life, this is a great platform. One major advantage? No matter how much HP memorabilia someone collects, you’re guaranteed to find something new here.
Fans of the Harry Potter films will enjoy decorating their homes with faithful replicas of iconic items. One of the most popular replicas out there: The chess set made famous by Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Wizard’s chess might be a notoriously brutal game, but you’ll want to treat your own set with a bit more care.
They say the wand chooses the wizard…but in this case, you can choose your own wand! Replicas of Harry’s, Hermione’s, Dumbledore’s, Voldemort’s, and Sirius Black’s wands, for example, are all available.
A Sorting Hat replica is a superb statement piece for any room. This version is made of comfortable faux-suede fabric and can be worn if you and your friends want to get yourselves Sorted.
Fans of Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot, and Prongs will love their very own Marauders’ Map, measuring 15.5 by 72 inches when opened up, which allows for a good level of detail.
Finally, a personalized Hogwarts acceptance letter is the perfect gift for an eleventh birthday party (or, frankly, any birthday party).
Funko Pop! Figurines
Show some love for your favorite character, whether it’s Dumbledore, Hagrid, McGonagall, Trelawney, or Harry himself. My personal favorite Funko Pop might be the vibrantly colored Fawkes. These stylized figures make fun gifts for the Potterhead in your life (or for yourself).
You can choose from a wide variety of characters—and that includes magical creatures, as well as human characters in their animal forms! Here is Sirius Black in his Animagus form and Remus Lupin as a werewolf. If you’re a big fan of Buckbeak or the Hogwarts thestrals, you’re in luck.
I love all the attention to detail and the ability to choose among a huge variety of people and creatures, not just a handful of main characters. Plus, with the ongoing Fantastic Beasts films, there’s an even broader array of magical creatures to enjoy.
There’s even a Funko Advent calendar that’s perfect for the next holiday season.
See Related Topic: 12 Best LEGO Sets for 2020
Games and Cards
Many classic games can now be found with a magical twist: Check out this Harry Potter-themed UNO game, Hogwarts Battle card game, Potter-themed Clue, and wizard-approved Trivial Pursuit. Even Scrabble is available with a Harry Potter variation.
Clothing and Jewelry
Some classic Potter clothing items include sweaters and scarves. Show allegiance to your preferred House or to Hogwarts in general, or send someone a Mrs. Weasley-inspired sweater with their initials on it. This stunning handknit wool sweater is sure to become a cold weather staple in your wardrobe; more affordable options are also out there.
As for jewelry, you can take a page from Hermione’s book and don a Time Turner necklace, the perfect accessory for a busy student who has too many classes and not enough time.
I also like this Hogwarts stamp enamel pin, this glittery Slug Club enamel pin, these book-inspired stud earrings, and this liquid luck necklace. Everyone can use a little Felix Felicis in their lives, and this sparkly necklace makes an excellent good luck charm.
Household Items and Home Decor
There are simply so many household pieces that I can’t possibly fit them all into this guide. So, I’ll just highlight a few examples that I especially love, either items I already own or ones that I desperately want.
First up, these gorgeous bamboo cooking and serving utensils feature magical designs inspired by Hogwarts Castle, Quidditch, the Marauders’ Map, and more. They’re an inexpensive and aesthetically pleasing way to add a touch of magic to your kitchen. The one thing they won’t do is magically stir the pot for you.
Next, this Mirror of Erised is a classy and practical accent piece for any room. It’s part of the PB Teen Harry Potter collection, which is full of amazing pieces and design inspiration for wizards, witches, and Muggles of all ages. I want absolutely everything in this collection.
Add some wizard inspiration to your life with this framed Albus Dumbledore quote: “Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light.”
My Potter collection includes multiple Hedwig-themed items, but the one I get the most daily use out of? This ceramic Hedwig mug, which brightens up my morning coffee ritual. I also love my Hedwig plush figure, which lives on top of my bed.
And last but not least, I love the hand-crafted aesthetic of this wooden Hogwarts wall clock, which captures the enchantment and delight of Hogwarts castle on a starlit snowy evening.
Toiletries aren’t exactly collectible, since the whole point is that you use them up and enjoy them. But there are some great products out there—often handmade—that can add a little magic to your daily routine.
A few that stand out include: butterbeer lip balm, a cauldron-shaped bath bomb, specialty soaps, this Harry Potter-themed spa gift box, a dragon egg-shaped bath bomb, and some wand-inspired makeup brushes.
I wish I could accio all of these fabulous items right into my house. As it is, I have to expand my collection in traditional Muggle fashion, by acquiring pieces one at a time when I find something that really stands out. As I’ve grown up, my collection has grown with me, and now includes some truly high-quality, unique, and handmade items, though I’m just as attached to my plush Hedwig, one of the first Potter pieces I ever owned. I hope your collection, like mine, brings magic to your life and enriches your connection to this incredible book series.