Ministry of Magic Memo - Paper Airplane

Krats

Active Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I created this project a while ago when I was on a bit of a Harry Potter buzz after visiting the WB studios. Surprised to find there weren't accurate instructional for producing these already. Already posted it on my blog but thought I’d post it up here too in case anyone finds it useful.

So these are the Interdepartmental Memos on display at the Warner Bros Studio Tour:

Original-prop.jpg

On closer examination, the first thing I noticed is that the majority of people who attempt to recreate these are making the wrong design of plane. Took me a few attempts but I discovered that to match the appearance of the ones in the movie you need an A4/A3 sheet of paper, and you need to start with the paper landscape. Here’s how you do it:

1. With your sheet landscape in front of you, fold it in half, then open it back out again

1 Fold in half.jpg

2. Now fold the top corners in to the centre.

2 Fold nose in.jpg

3. Turn the paper over and fold the top edges into the centre.

3 Turn over.jpg 3b Sides in.jpg

4. Turn the paper over again and fold the plane in half

4 Fold in half.jpg

5. Now fold the wings down on both sides… and there you have it. I’ve included the instructions as a screenshot in case you need a template to work to.

5 Wing down.jpg 5b other wing down.jpg 6 MoM Memo.jpg

Memo-pattern.jpg

(continued in next post...)
 

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Krats

Active Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
6. So now you know how to make a MoM aeroplane folded to the correct pattern but it needs some enchantments placing on it. Now you could take your lilac paper and a black marker pen, copy out the designs from the reference photos and start from there… or you could run a print out of this design which should fit perfectly :)

Front:
Memo-Front.jpg

Back:
Memo-Back.jpg

Here's how you start to fold the printed sheet:
6 Fold nose in.jpg

7. I’ve also worked up a design for the seal which I include below. All you need to do is print some on plain white sticky backed sheets, cut them out with a sharp knife and apply them carefully to the centre of the plane.
Memo-Seal.jpg 7 Sticker.jpg

8. The finishing touch is to add the gold tip to the nose. You could use paint, or a gel pen, or even glue some foil on but the prop I saw used a gold leaf. First I sealed the surface where the leaf was to be applied using red acrylic which provided a nice, plasticy, non absorbent surface. A red base also helps make the gold look richer.
8 Red Paint.jpg

9. Once this was dry I applied the Size. Using an old/cheap brush I painted it over the red paint then left it for a few minutes to dry.
9 Size.jpg

10. Finally I took a sheet of gold leaf (I would recommend the transfer type that comes on a backing sheet) and laid it over the Size. After gently rubbing the back, I carefully lifted the sheet away, took a soft brush and rubbed it over the gold surface to help make sure the leaf stuck and any lose material was brushed away.
10b Gold Leaf.jpg 10 Gold Leaf.jpg 11 Finished.jpg

And there you go, a finished Memo that looks like it’s come straight from the Ministry of Magic, except of course if you look at the screen shots from the movie, the ‘M’ is the other way up… :p
 

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Monkey540

Sr Member
Thank you for all this info, I'll have to make one myself.

Which size sheet do you think makes a more accurate memo, A4? or the larger A3? Is coloured stock as readily available in A3?
 

lynx0099

Well-Known Member
Hello Krats, this is a great tutorial... thank you very much for sharing this.
It looks wonderful :)
 

Barneyrfd

Sr Member
Very nice. I had figured out a way to make the memo using 2 sheets of paper (the one sheet was sort of like the envelope for the memo itself) but this looks great.

bfd
 

Krats

Active Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Thank you for all this info, I'll have to make one myself.

Which size sheet do you think makes a more accurate memo, A4? or the larger A3? Is coloured stock as readily available in A3?
I *think* the memos at the studio were printed on A3 sheets, they looked larger than mine and I printed at A4. They certainly used paper at an A-ratio though as that’s the only way you can match the proportions on the finished plane.

As for card stock… I struggled to find the perfect colour. I believe it’s a textured “pastel” style paper in lilac but the only stuff I could get locally was a bit on the pink side. It’s sold in big racks in art shops, you’ll need to trim it down but size won’t be an issue. I’m sure if you looked you’d be able to find something that’s closer to the screen props than I ended up using.

Very nice. I had figured out a way to make the memo using 2 sheets of paper (the one sheet was sort of like the envelope for the memo itself) but this looks great.

bfd
Thanks. My only regret with the Memo design is that it doesn’t open up nicely into an actual memo. The two piece of paper idea sounds like a nice work around for this.
 
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