Danvers wand maker creates woodworking wizardry

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DANVERS, Ill. (WMBD) — For hours at a time, you’ll find Gary Horrie working in the basement of his Danvers home. But his office is for what you might call self-taught woodworking wizardry.

“I was always interested in woodworking. And one Christmas a few years ago, my wife actually got me a lathe for Christmas and I was pretty much overjoyed,” he said.

A lathe is a rotating tool used to cut, sand and design wood. It’s where the creative magic happens for Horrie. What was once a way for him to make wooden home accessories and even band drumsticks, has since evolved into something more.

“I needed practice for doing the stair spindles and stuff, so I’m like, ‘Okay, well let me just try something simple.’ And next thing you knew, I had a wand.”

gary horrie

Each wand is crafted by hand with a different design.

He said, “Probably for the last couple of years, I don’t use any kind of reference at all. I just put the wood on there and let the artist kind of take over.”

What started as an accident, then became a business boom.

“I’d bring them into work and I would see people—see people’s reaction and it was, it was just great. You know they’re like, ‘These—there’s a market for this. These are great,’” Horrie said.

Horrie has since started his online store, WandCraft. His work is getting national attention, even by Buzzfeed.

“Everything just started exploding for me. So that was really the boost that kind of made me pick up my game,” he said.

Horrie credits the popularity of Harry Potter and other cosplayers for the growth of his wand work. Ultimately he’s looking into making other products and participating in more cosplay conventions.

For more information, visit Horrie’s online store, WandCraft. He plans on donating part of his wand proceeds to Children’s Hospital of Illinois.

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