Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Crafts from the Crooked Magician


How to make your own powder of life!


The Patchwork Girl of Oz is hands down, my favourite of the Oz books by L. Frank Baum. Not only is Scraps a most memorable character, but the plot is a cracking good one as well--the seemingly impossible quest. 

The story begins with Ojo the Unlucky and his monosyllabic uncle Unc Nunkie  called “The Silent One” visiting Dr Pipt, the Crooked magician, who is crooked in more ways than one. His is described by Baum like this:


He was really very crooked and Ojo wondered how he managed to do so many things with such a twisted body. When he sat down upon a crooked chair that had been made to fit him, one knee was under his chin and the other near the small of his back; but he was a cheerful man and his face bore a pleasant and agreeable expression.


He is also crooked in his dealings--magic is outlawed in Oz  and Dr Pipt knows this. Only Glinda the Good and the Wizard  are allowed. (The Wizard  was a humbug and at one point evil, but now is reformed and a proper magician). He makes an excuse that he is allowed to do it for himself or his household, but not for others or for a profession. Ozma puts a stop to this later.

He also previously had dealings with the old witch Mombi in The Marvellous Land of Oz. The Wizard (in his evil faze) kidnapped the Ozma, the rightful ruler of Oz, and gave her to Mombi who turned Ozma in a boy called Tip and used him as a servant. She visited Dr Pipt and traded some of her magic for a sample of powder of life which was used to bring Jack Pumpkinhead and the Sawhorse to life. 

Enough of the plot for now. On with the crafts!

When we went on holiday to Chichester, we ate jam out of these adorable little jars and so I saved back a few after breakfast and washed them out. I wanted to make a tiny jar of my own powder of life. I used my standard technique of printing a design onto parchment paper, then tearing the edges. I used a brown sharpie to lightly stain the edges of the torn paper and then I used a mixture of watered down white glue to stick it on. I also found this great looking eye on the --check them out for the best free vintage clip art. Take a squinty.


Wanna know how to use it?

1. Sprinkle a bit on the inanimate object you intend to bring to life.

2. Lift your left hand and point your little finger upwards and say Weaugh!

3. Lift your right hand and  point your thumb upwards and say Teaugh!

4. Lift both hands a with fingers and thumb spread out and say Peaugh!

Back to the story.

The Crooked magician had foolishly given Mombi the witch his last bit of the powder of life and so had to make another batch so his wife Margolotte could bring the servant girl to life that she had made out of a patchwork quilt.

Making the powder of life is a lot of trouble. Dr. Pipt  had to spend six years stirring 4 kettles simultaneously --two with his hands and two with his feet.

Note: not having several years to waste (not to mention not owning 4 kettles) I opted to fill my jar with bicarbonate of soda.


That’s all for today. Stay tuned for the next instalment of Crafts from the Crooked Magician!


  1. I love The Patchwork Girl of Oz, too! Very cute craft, although it's too bad you don't own four kettles. ;)

  2. That book was the first one I remember reading as a child. What a clever chickadee you are, you sly crafty thing. . . . .