Practical Magic

Last October, I posted a movie house tour featuring one of my favorite comedy movies, The Burbs, starring Tom Hanks and Carrie Fischer. The Burbs is a fun movie to watch around Halloween time.  It’s not scary or gory, just mysterious and funny. (Tour that movie house here: The Burbs.)

When I posted about The Burbs, several folks suggested I post a tour of the Victorian house in the movie, Practical Magic.   I couldn’t wait to watch the movie to see the house.  The movie, Practical Magic is based on the book of the same name by author Alice Hoffman.

I can’t really say I liked the movie that much, parts of it were a little too morbid for me, but it was definitely worth watching to see the interiors of the house.  If you would like to know more about the storyline, Wikipedia has a really comprehensive overview.  This post is a detailed tour of the amazing Victorian house that is so prominently featured throughout the movie.

The Victorian House:
The house. Oh. my. stars!  It’s awesome!  There are a couple of rooms (Parlor and Dining) that are a definitely Victorian style and quite dark.  But the kitchen and conservatory are light and bright.  The gardens are wonderful, too!  While watching this movie, you’ll find yourself craning your neck to try and see more.

Of course, the exterior is fabulous!  Just look at it!  I’ve always adored the exterior design of a historic Victorian home.  And you know I’m loving that white picket fence!

Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

You’re going to disown me for telling you this, but ya gotta know.

Unfortunately, the house in Practical Magic is just like the house in the movie, The Holiday.  It isn’t real–it’s an architectural shell built for the filming of the exterior scenes in the movie. The land was rented on San Juan Island in Washington for the construction of the home.  Once the movie was done, the house was torn down.

All the interior scenes were filmed in a studio in Los Angeles and they were modeled after a home located on San Juan Valley Road in Washington State.   At one point during the filming, the wonderful conservatory was taken apart in Los Angeles and transported to Washington where it was rebuilt and added to the house for the filming of the exterior scenes.


You know, I was really giving this some thought the other night.  Instead of building fake house-shells for movies, why don’t they just go ahead and build a real house and then sell it when the movie is over?   After thinking about it, I came up with this:  1. It costs A LOT more to build a real house to code with plumbing, electricity, heating/AC systems, insulation, etc…. than it costs to just build a beautiful shell.  2. Wouldn’t it be a pain if all that money was spent to build a real house for a movie, and then once the movie was finished, they had trouble finding a buyer. Not good.  3.  There’s also the added bonus of not having all the constraints you have with a real house.  A faux movie house can have break-away walls and open ceilings, allowing for all that extra lighting and movie stuff.

So, though it may not be real, at least we get to see a “dream” home, a fantasy house, in all its glory.  Then we can build that very same house for real.  I wonder if anyone has done that–build a house based on the Practical Magic house.  I’d love to see that!  At the least, we can incorporate some of the features we see in the movie house into our own home.  The kitchen in Practical Magic has been copied quite a few times since the release of this movie.  So in many ways, the house is real.

The roofline you see down along the very front of this pic below is a guest cottage in the movie.  It was built with the roof sinking downward in the center so it would look old.

Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

One side of the home is bordered by a road, while the other side features a picturesque water-side view.  Beautiful!  I can see why they chose this piece of land for the home.   I love the name of the road the house is on in the movie, Magnolia Street.  Not sure why they chose that name.  I guess they wanted it to be located in the southern part of the United States.

Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

Victoria Magazine featured this wonderful movie house in their October 1998 issue.  The article shared some great pics, some of which I’m sharing here.  The article also gave fascinating information about the home, it’s construction and set design.  Of course, it revealed that the house was built just for the movie. The flowers on the trees are actually silk–the magic of Hollywood.

The town scenes are downtown Coupeville, Washington.  I read somewhere, the townsfolk agreed to allow the buildings in town be painted white for the movie.  Once the movie was completed, the buildings were all repainted back to their original color.

Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

Did you know the tower in the movie is supposed to be a lighthouse?  I missed that part somehow.  Turns out, many of the lighthouse keepers back in the day were women!

Robin Standerfer, the Production Designer for the movie, created all the wonderful interiors from the few descriptions she found in the book.   In Victoria, she is quoted as saying, “I analyzed the descriptions of the stairway and the tangle of vines growing up over the back door and decided it had to be Victorian.  But it couldn’t look haunted  It had to be clean and white, not fading and cobwebbed.”  I’m so glad she chose to make it pretty and not scary.

At evening view, all aglow.


Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

As you enter into the home through the front door, here’s the view you would see.  The entry has lots of stained woodwork that is so typical of most historic Victorian homes.

Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

Looking back toward the front door…

Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

The Parlor:
In this view of the parlor, you can clearly see the filming took place in a studio.
Tour the Victorian house in the movie, Practical Magic

Victoria shared the source of some of the furniture and accessories we saw in the movie.  The crinkly, old leather chairs came from Bountiful, an antique store in Los Angeles. Velvet curtains were chosen for the window treatments.  The botanical prints above the piano play a part in the movie at one point.  They were found at Tin Man Antiques in New York.  Wouldn’t it be a blast going shopping for just the right accessories for a movie set?  I imagine it would be stressful, but a so rewarding seeing it all come together in the end.


In this view from the movie, notice the oddly shaped mirror on the wall.

Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

Here’s a close-up of that mirror.  You can really see the wallpaper here, too.  Robin chose this design of birds and entangled vines because the Aunts in the movie, Aunt Jet played by Dianne Wiest and Aunt Frances played by Stockard Channing, are all about nature.  They grow and use all kinds of herbs from their garden in the movie.   You don’t want to be a dove in this house, though…trust me on that.

Let’s check out the room where so much of the action in the movie takes place…the kitchen.  Again, in this view, it’s pretty obvious it’s a set.  I love kitchen cabinetry that’s designed to look like furniture.


In this view from the movie, it’s easy to see why this kitchen was such a huge hit and why so many folks have copied it for their own homes.  It’s an amazing kitchen!  We see a farmhouse sink, a charming plate rack, wonderful storage for glassware/dishes inside lighted cabinets and dark wood floors contrasting against creamy white cabinetry.  Though this movie was filmed in 1998, this look is still very popular even today.

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

This kitchen is huge!  The sink we saw above is actually in the section you see on the other side of the cabinets on the right.  You can just see the old farmhouse table over the back of Aidan Quinn who plays Officer Gary Hallet.  He is investigating the disappearance of Gillian’s old boyfriend in the movie.

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie


We get a closer view of one corner of that area in this view where Gillian is coming down the back stairway.

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

Sally is about to peek out into the backyard in this scene. We catch a great view of the sink area and the Aunt’s wonderful collection of creamware. Or, do you think it’s Ironstone?

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

The paper towels must be from recycled paper…not often you see brown paper towels.

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie


The Production Director, Robin, took great care with every single detail of the design and decor in Practical Magic. For example, she insisted the glass in the cabinets in the kitchen be wavy, just as hand-blown glass would have been a hundred years ago.  Nothing you see in this movie is an accident.  Every prop was well-thought out and planned, down to its location in the house.

On the other side of this section of cabinetry, we see a little area for hanging coats and such. You can see that the walls are beadboard.

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

You can really see the beadboard walls in this scene showing the breakfast area.  Interesting how they painted the trim a tan color.  It really contrasts well against the white beadboard and it’s a nice compliment to the tile at the other end of the kitchen.

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

This same area at night.  Spooky.

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

See the bell jar/cloche on the counter? Those are everywhere in the movie. You see them in almost all the rooms, including the conservatory and even out in the garden.

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

I love how they chose a Dutch door for the kitchen exit to the garden.  There’s just something special about this style door.  I can so picture the top half open with a pie cooling on the lower section.  Or, how about brownies since the Aunts eat those for breakfast.

Tour the Victorian house in the movie, Practical Magic


The views just get better.  How would you like to see this from your kitchen?

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

Note the old-timey scale on the table to the right.  Do you know what that room is in the background?  Love the hanging light fixture.

Kitchen and Victorian Home in Practical Magic Movie

A view of the room from above.  Hint: Those are flower petals scattered across the floor.

Conservatory in Practical Magic Movie House

If you guessed the Conservatory, you were right!  Looks like it’s been here forever, doesn’t it?

Conservatory in Practical Magic Movie House

An evening view, looking across to the kitchen. Feels romantic with all the flowers in bloom.  Here’s a fun fact from the movie:  The Aunts do all their mixing and measuring here in the conservatory, using hand-blown bottles and funnels.  A glass scale that was modeled after a fifteenth-century Italian design was hand-crafted by artist, Allison Berger, just for the movie.   It’s the tall, curvy, glass piece just to the left of the beaker on the tall, black metal stand.  Sooo delicate.  That would last about 5 minutes in my house before I’d turn it over and break it.

I love this view. Let’s go outside and check out the gardens and the pergola.

Conservatory in Practical Magic Movie House


There’s a wonderful garden in Practical Magic.  It’s on the side of the house that’s closest to the water.

Conservatory in Practical Magic Movie House


In this scene from the movie, you see the pergola on the left, the garden on the right and three sets of stairs.  The steps at the far right lead up onto the side porch you saw in the picture above.  The set of steps coming down that we see in a side view, lead into the kitchen.  The other set, just to the left of those kitchen steps, lead up and through the double doors into the conservatory, which is the view we just saw a couple of pictures up in this post.


Here’s the same view at night with the conservatory all aglow.   Wouldn’t you LOVE to live here?  Imagine having a vegetable and herb garden like this just outside your kitchen.  Imagine having a conservatory-like this attached to your home.

Garden in Practical Magic Movie House


In this pic from Victoria, we see bell jars in the garden.  Bell jars were often used to protect delicate plants from frost damage, insects or animals.  I wonder if some gardeners still use them today?  I’ve never seen one in use on a garden tour.  They are lovely in the garden, aren’t they?  Wonder if they could withstand one of our spring hail storms here in Georgia.  Have to be pretty heavy-duty for that.

A gorgeous view…

Garden in Practical Magic Movie House

It boggles the mind to think of all the work that went into creating the landscape, gardens, paths, etc… for this movie.  It all looks so fully grown like it has been there for years and years.



Back inside the home, I’m not exactly sure what this room was in the movie, but it looks like a Butler’s Pantry, to me.  Notice the mix of white cabinetry and white beadboard walls with the stained cabinetry.  The white woodwork and white cabinets really keep the stained cabinets from feeling overbearing.

Update: Thanks to Melanie for identifying this room as part of the conservatory. Melanie states, “In Victorian times the botanical/horticultural era was booming. The way to show your wealth while having extravagant dinner parties – was to cook, decorate, and bake with herbs and flowers grown from your own hands. It was also called Victorian Floriology.”

Practical Magic Movie House

The most subdued room in the home is Sally’s bedroom.  In this scene, she and Gillian are talking after having been apart for a long time.

Tour the Victorian house in the movie, Practical Magic


Sally grew up sleeping in the attic room, but as an adult she sleeps here in this bedroom when visiting or staying with her Aunts.  We never see the bedrooms of the two Aunts in the movie.

Tour the Victorian house in the movie, Practical Magic


The headboard for Sally’s bed…super plain.

Tour the Victorian house in the movie, Practical Magic


Wouldn’t this be the most depressing room to sleep in?  Maybe it would be pretty with the drapes thrown back and the sun pouring in.  The depressing atmosphere is appropriate, though, since Sally is mourning her recently deceased husband.  In this scene, her daughter is trying to draw her out of bed, without success.

Practical Magic Movie House


In the movie, Gillian sleeps in Sally’s old room up in the attic.

Tour the Victorian house in the movie, Practical Magic


The stairs continue upward beyond this attic room, presumably to the lighthouse tower above.  Maybe this is where the light housekeeper would have slept, once upon a time.  Love that old trunk!  I just noticed those “things” hanging on the rafters above the trunk.  Are those bats?  lol

In the book and movie, it is said, “They (Gillian and Sally) sat in the cool parlor late in the day, or sprawled out on the second-floor landing where there were thin bands of lemony sunlight, playing Parcheesi and endless rounds of gin rummy.”

Tour the Victorian house in the movie, Practical Magic


In this weird pic, Gillian is busy being possessed by the spirit of her evil, ex-boyfriend, thus her strange position.  The attic is simply furnished with two twin beds and a cute little desk tucked up under the eves.

Tour the Victorian house in the movie, Practical Magic


As I read about all the work that went into creating the sets, the house and the gardens, I was wondering how the Production Designer can stand seeing all of it dismantled once the movie is finished.  In the article in Victoria, Robin said she always leaves before it’s all gone.

Hope you enjoyed this tour of the Victorian home and the surrounding gardens from the movie, Practical Magic.

Enjoy this post?  Appreciate so much if you’d give it a Google +1 .   Thanks in advance!

Most pictures in this post are pics I took while watching the movie, Practical Magic.  A few are scanned pics from an October 1998 issue of Victoria Magazine and are labeled as such.

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  1. The Little Red Shop says

    HI Susan, Ahh…those sets were lovely, but I agree with you, the movie is loaded with some creepy stuff. As a native Suburban Seattleite, I wanted to let you know that San Juan Island, where some of the outdoor scenes were filmed, is part of an archipelago, so what you are referring to as "the river" is probably either a channel which runs through the islands, or a strait. It such a beautiful area…no wonder filmmakers love it!

    Thank you for another wonderful post! I think of this set often as I restore my 101 year old house.

    : )

    Julie M.

  2. Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) says

    Julie, thanks so much for that info. I'll have to change my wording to just say water. 🙂 Yep, definitely a strange movie!

  3. Debra @ Common Ground says

    I hadn't seen the movie until last year when I had heard so much about the set design and the fabulous house. I really love the conservatory and kitchen. thanks for all the hard work you did on this post, loved seeing all the still shots!

    • I watched a “making of” for the movie. Griffin Dunne said that the land was tribal land and the only way to use it was to agree to return it back to exactly like it was before they were there. So they had to remove everything.


    I LOVE that movie. I'm going to have to go back and watch it yet again and pay more attention to the interiors! They are SO fun. I do remember wishing I could have a butler's pantry like that. And a house on the water. And a conservatory. LOL! I guess I did pay a LITTLE attention to the house after all. Have a great weekend!


  5. Inspire Me Heather says

    Thanks – I enjoyed that little tour around and remember that movie well!

  6. Theresa (Miss Charlotte) says

    Oh, wow! I loved the movie and really was hoping the house was real, as I was planning on moving in when the kiddos grow up and leave the nest. Alas, tis only Hollywood…but how gorgeous is that!? Thank you for taking the time to post this, it's an amazing home. Cheers!

  7. Robin@DecoratingTennisGirl says

    Isn't this the house used on The Munsters, too? 1313 Mockingbird Lane 🙂 Looks very similar from the outside and the front stairway, too where the dragon lived underneath.

  8. This is one of my favorite movie houses. If I had the opportunity, I would love to recreate elements of the kitchen and conservatory. I too have wished to have the actors move a bit to see beyond them. I am glad Victoria did such a wonderful article on this house – both definitely a favorite of mine!
    Thank you for sharing this gorgeous house and garden!

  9. The next best thing as "being there!" Thanks! franki

  10. bedroom chandeliers says

    there is just something magical about a white picket fence

  11. I'm loving all your movie home tours! Thanks so much for taking the time to point out all the wonderful features! Absolutely fascinating!

  12. martinealison says

    Quelle belle maison et quel magnifique environnement!
    La cuisine est sincèrement un bijou… et un lieu créatif…
    Gros bisous

  13. This is one of my favorite movies! I love the story first of all. The set decorating is wonderful too. It's such a perfect movie for this month as well. You make me want to go watch it again!

  14. Thanks so much for the tour. I watched the movie years ago and will have to watch it again now. The house, inside and out, is just beautiful!

  15. How could you not fall in love with everything about this movie…..all the actors and that wonderful world that was created. Yes, I could definitely live in that house. Wonder how many times I've watched this….?
    Thank you for the lovely tour, Susan!

  16. Hi Susan…..That was a great tour. Thanks so much. Yeah, I'd like to live in a house like that. It fits perfectly in New England!
    Would love that plant-filled addition off the kitchen. Wowsers.

    Take care and hope you have a terrific weekend. Susan

  17. I love this movie and thanks for sharing the pictures with us. I have been trying to find that magazine for awhile now. You probably already heard this, but if you ever want to sell it give me an email. HA! HA!

  18. Katherines Corner says

    Oh my goodness this movie is on my favorites list. Don't you just wish you could dance around that kitchen. This was such a fun post, Than you or sharing.Hugs and sincere wishes for a beautiful weekend xo

  19. Carrie'sCreations says

    What a fabulous post!! I can't wait to check out the other movie houses on your list. I heard an interview with the set designer from Something's Gotta Give and the The Holiday! Something's Gotta Give is my dream home!

  20. sweet violets says

    What a great tour….thanks so much!!! This is one of my favorite all time movies…love all of it!!! The kitchen of course is the best!!!

    My parents had bell jars and would use them to cover newly started plants in the Spring, it made like a little hot house inside, by mid summer they are removed, they were never intended to go through a winter. Wonder where they went to???

    My other fav movie house is in The Big Chill…….hugs…cleo

  21. black eyed susans kitchen says

    Thanks Susan, this was such a treat!! I actually liked the movie better than the book and we all know that never happens. There were so many fantastic details in and outside of this house that I fell in love with. It is the perfect time of year to see the movie again.

  22. red ticking says

    what a fantastic post! i never saw the movie but love all of the behind the scenes action you took us thru…
    i dont know if i can read about somethings gotta give as i want to just think it is the perfect house and someone fabulous is living in it now… (also its complicated – know what is not what it seems! boo)

    have a delightful weekend… xoxo

  23. This has always been my favorite movie house. Add the salt water, and the gardens, and for me it just doesn't get any better than this. Maybe someone who owns a beauty like this will send you some photos! 😉
    Hugs, Lisa

  24. Jodi@FreshVintageHome says

    I was so excited to see this post! I just moved from Whidbey Island where much of the movie was filmed. The town scenes are downtown Coupeville, WA. They painted the entire historical street in white. Its no longer white, but has the exact same charm as in the movie. Its the quaintest, adorable waterfront town! The views are amazing anywhere you go on Whidbey and the San Juan Islands. I love this movie, and I love that house. When I lived there, I would drive around looking for it until I found out later that it was a set. ha ha. Thankyou
    for reminding me of the movie, I think I will watch it again soon. Have a great weekend.

  25. Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) says

    Jodi, thanks so much for that info. I thought I had read that either in the magazine or online but I couldn't find it again and was reluctant to add it to the post. So glad you confirmed that. I'm amazed they agreed to let them do that! I know you were disappointed when you found out the house was gone. That's like when folks come down to Georgia, they want to know where to find Tara from Gone With the Wind. Sadly, it doesn't exist, although the south has lots of homes that look very similar. They are everywhere…in all the towns throughout Georgia.

  26. Practical Magic is my favorite movie, mostly because of the house and the sets. One note..something I found interesting. I've very sensitive to light and can look at a photo and generally tell where it was taken. When I saw the street scenes in this movie, I thought….hmmm that doesn't "feel" like New England. Now I see it wasn't. It was WA. Another confirmation for me. Thanks for a great great post. Like you, I study every inch of the background and love all the bell jars, etc. Nice work!

  27. Magali @ The Little White House says

    I began watching this film because Nicole Kidman was in it… But I watched it till the end because I fell in love with the house… I'm still in love with it!

  28. Kathryn Ferguson Griffin says

    Susan, I've loved this house ever since I saw "Practical Magic". Not a big fan of the story line, but the house, garden, and porch kept me captivated. Thank you for doing the research and sharing. Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse

  29. This home is so incredibly lovely!

  30. Susan At Glen Oaks Primitives says

    Hi, Susan, what a beautiful house and beautiful setting this is. Thank you so much for all of the hard work it took you to do this post and put up all the great photos.
    Warm Regards,

  31. Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) says

    Susan, Thanks! It was a lot of fun researching this movie. Fascinating all the things you learn in the process.

  32. I love this house as well as all the others you post I like you have a love for movie houses I will watch a certain movie just to see the house you have posted all the ones I love, I was wondering if you have ever seen the movie with Barbra Striesand called the Mirrior Has Two Faces, love the apartment she and her Mother live in would love to see a post about that apartment.

  33. Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) says

    Jeanie, Thanks! I haven't seen that one…but now I'd like to. Thanks for the suggestion. 🙂

  34. Renee @ where the grass is greener says

    Thanks. This was a great treat since for the last 11 years myself and my friends get together for "midnight Margaritas" –great scene in the movie– and watch this movie. I am sharing this blog link with my friends so they can gain a new perspective on our special night. Yes, the movie is a little freaky sometimes, but it's also very sweet in it's own way.

  35. This is my absolute favorite movie house. I would love to build my own replica… one of these days. There is this wonderful fansite amasveritasdotcom that has a lot of the same info you posted on the house. It also includes exterior and interior elevations and floor plans and has stuff about the other sets as well. I love to roam around that site once in a while. Thanks for posting about this beautiful, dreamy dream house.

  36. scrapfancy says

    Loved the movie alot and glad to know some fun things about the set. So interesting when you found out the house was digital. So many things now are in movies. Keep up the great reviews for us.

  37. Vibration Machine says

    This is a great tour of the movie… Thank you for sharing it.

  38. Nancy's Notes says

    Susan, what a treat! Loved the tour, what a gorgeous home, now I've got to see the movie again!

  39. ❁Velma ~Down Our Country Road❁ says

    Oh my, the "house" is so absolutely beautiful I found myself looking at all the details…did you notice that the stove in the kitchen might be a woodburning stove? There appears to be a stove pipe which is indicative of a woodburning stove.
    It is sad that it is not a real house. 🙁 It would be such a lovely home to live in even if it was used in such a creepy movie. You'd never catch me watching that movie!!! I don't do creepy 🙂

  40. LOVED this movie house tour. So fun and such inspiration.

  41. Anita @ Cedar Hill Ranch says

    Fabulous home tour!! I love these movie house tours you have!! I also wanted to let you know that I added a china cabinet to my back porch and mentioned your blog since you inspired me with your fabulous porch!!

  42. beachcomber says

    AMAZING! thanks for the tour.

  43. Michele/Ohio says

    Not real!!??? Oh my word. Wow.

    How depressing. It is fabulous and this post was amazing, thank you for ALL the great info and pictures!

  44. Katie@LeBeauPaonVictorien says

    I had always wondered if the house in the movie was a real house. I love the movie; it's one of my faves and, of course, the house has always been an inspiration to me. I'd give anything to have that conservatory and the garden!

  45. White Ironstone Cottage says

    Oh My I loved every pic forgot how fabulous the sets were thank you for a fabulous post Loved it all

  46. Ah yes, I remember it well. I love how this captures the details for me without having to pause and play 20 times. 😉 So many beautiful details. It was another favorite of mine, the house that is. I did not like the movie.

    Thanks for sharing and inspiring as usual, Susan. Enjoy your Monday.

  47. This was fun. What a great house and I am dying over that kitchen….dreamy!

  48. Tha house was built on a large grass area at a beautiful camping spot-San Juan County Park. Its fun to see how they transformed it!

  49. Eileen @ Cottage Beach House says

    Wonderful post Susan! I loved all your fabulous photos of the interior. I really did not know that the house tower was supposed to be a lighthouse tower. It really does look like one though. Last year I did a post on how much the practical magic house looks like the Hereford Lighthouse right down the street from me in New Jersey. Even the grounds are laid out with the inlet to the ocean in the back of the lighthouse and with beautiful gardens and a rock seawall exactly like in the movie house.

  50. Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) says

    Eileen, that's so neat! Wonder if the Hereford Lighthouse was the inspiration for the tower portion of the house.

  51. This is my favorite movie of all time. I've watched it more times than I can count and each time I see something new. Thanks for sharing the house with us and for helping me to see even more things I missed while watching.

  52. Karen's Place says

    Eileen, One of my favorite movie and mostly because of this most beautiful Victorian house on the waters edge, so spectacular!!!, the music and the actors were fun, too. "Midnight Margaritas" and the Sister gift for "Helping" women of the town who came to the back door. Thank you so much for reminding me of it when it was featured in Victoria magazine Oct 98. I watch this movie occasionally to see the house and fast forward through the yucky scenes. The sound track is fun to listen to. Thanks Again!

  53. Karen's Place says

    I so apologize Susan if I called you Eileen. I also love Sheryl Chow's song If you ever did believe…I am still looking at all the photos. Love, Love, Love them all and trying to forget it's not all what it seemed and mostly a movie set….

  54. Real Estate Agent in Palm Springs says

    Hello Susan, I like the Victorian houses, they are beautiful and also the interiors are amazing. I have seen this particular house in the movie and yes, it is very beautiful to see. It will be nice to see some real building like this model, especially the kitchen and also the garden. I really have to thank you for posting the pictures of the house and also the description for each pictures.

  55. Bedroom Chandeliers Cameron says

    Wow, seriously. I just stumbled upon this post Susan, and these are some seriously great pictures. I haven't watched the film, but this makes me want to. Thanks for this graphical tour. 🙂

  56. This is one of my very favorite movies but there are some discrepancies! The Aunts take the kids the “summer solstice celebration”, then soon after when Sally is confessing to Mr Hallet, he states that the date is in March… And the first time they are burying Gillian’s boyfriend, they are both shivering and shaking like its 20 degrees. If its the middle of summer, almost anywhere, its not that cold! Still one of my top 5 favorite movies EVER. 🙂

  57. kika thomas says

    The street is called Magnolia because that is the street they live on in the book.
    Although I don’t know how many Magnolias–streets or trees–there are in Massachusetts.
    Plenty in California where I live, though!
    Great site, thank you very much. After all these years this movie still shines.

  58. Thanks, Kika. It is ironic they filmed it in Washington State where you don’t find magnolias, at all.

  59. I LOVE everything about that house. Even though I live in a small town in Indiana I have always said that if I ever win the lottery, that is the house I will have. 🙂 I would do anything in my power to make it just like it. I have even researched on the internet to try to find the floor plans for it. Lol

    • Cindy, I totally understand that kind of passion and enthusiasm for a house! I know, with your determination and desire, it will happen one day. Don’t let go of that dream!

  60. Hey Julie thanks for the pics. I love walking through sets and abandoned places from movies. There are some really neat YouTube vids of abandoned vacation places from 80s like in New York State. Real big place there creepy.. Anyway I got off subject. I just moved to Seattle area. It’s so beautiful here. I was curious where this property is. I’d love to see what’s there now. Prob nothing. Maybe find a souvenir. Love that movie and Sandy..:)

  61. One of the best Practical Magic house tours I’ve seen. I love this house and how perfectly it is accessorized to enhance the story.
    Just a few things, some of which are mere conjecture on my part:
    The things hanging above the chest in the attic are lovely fake butterflies, they look like paper or fabric, and in muted colors to keep with the aged look. And did you notice the gorgeous, delicate floral mural behind the two twin beds?
    The Pantry is just off the breakfast nook in the kitchen and can be accessed by a door from either the breakfast nook or from the small hall/stairwell by gorgeous amber wavy glass double doors, so that the light from the small window in the pantry can help light up the hall which doesn’t have much window access. The fridge is also in there, on the opposite wall from the large storage unit you see in the pictures. This is probably a nod to how old the home is suppose to be in that space for a fridge was not included in the original plans, and that the Aunts eat a very fresh diet based around what they grow.
    The stove is an ADG which is now available in wood-burning and gas models. They cost a small fortune and weigh ALOT. They are especially popular with the Martha Stewart/Bucolic bliss sets, and it’s suggested that you check your home’s structural integrity if you are considering installing one!
    Sally’s room is plain because she has wanted to be ‘normal’ since she was a little girl. She most likely moved into it when approaching adolescence and saw it as a sanctuary from the craziness.
    The dining room is a full time craft (in both the DIY and magic working meanings) room. The family is ostracized by society, especially the past generations, so it’s unlikely that they would ever have guests to entertain, and for that reason they also need to provide as much as possible for themselves, even weaving their own fabric.
    Phew, sorry about the long comment and thanks again for this post.

  62. I missed the mural…it really is pretty! Good eye! I do so love all the detail. It would be so much fun to be involved in creating the set designs and decorating them. Love that about the light in the pantry, too. I have heard of ADG stoves but didn’t know much about them. Wow, they must be amazingly heavy!
    That makes perfect sense about Sally’s room. Yep, so true about no need to entertain. Loved your comment and thanks for sharing all that great detail!

  63. I have loved this house and this movie since the first time I watched it. My parents were able to remodel my home (this is their business) ….(an old farmhouse) to have many similar characteristics as the home in the movie. I love my kitchen- we really tried to duplicate every detail (couldn’t afford the conservatory unfortunately:)….but I think it turned out great! I wish I knew how to post pics to a blog, I am new to this 😉 Tanya

    PS thanks for the pics and post!!

  64. I’m curious, has anyone ever attempted to draw blueprints? Did the production designer/team not have enough renderings to convert to useable blueprint? Still wondering that . . . . 🙂


  65. What a lovely tour! I can never get enough Practical Magic inspiration. Now if only I could figure out how to create this house from scratch!

  66. Hi, in case you didn’t get an answer to your sort-of question, “I’m not exactly sure what this room was in the movie, but it looks like a Butler’s Pantry, to me. Notice the mix of white cabinetry and white bead board walls with the stained cabinetry.” When working with herbs and flower essences creating tinctures etc, you need to store them in a darker room, the light of the conservatory would weaken them.

  67. Practical Magic is one of my very favorite movies! I fell in love with the house the first time I ever saw it and would be incredibly happy to have a place just like it! Thank you for such a wonderful tour of the house and gardens. You did a great job! This makes me want to see the movie again…even though I’ve probably seen it about 20 times! I think I need a Practical Magic house fix! Thanks again!!

  68. My wife is obsessed with this house. The kitchen, in particular. As a woodworker, it is now my job to build this house into our house.

  69. This is my all-time favorite movie. This is the house and gardens of my dreams. Sadly, its a dream that will die as I will never be able to afford anything even close to this.

  70. Kath salvin says

    Ab Fab house. Could sell soul to live there!!!!! Well done set designers. I’ll shout when building mine!

  71. Love your post! I love this movie, too, especially the interior shots of the kitchen. We will soon be moving to a log home in the Ozarks (a far cry from a Victorian house) but I am duplicating the kitchen as best I can. Actually, the white glass front cabinets and white granite countertops look right at home with the dark beams in the ceiling. Will have to settle for an outside conservatory, though.

  72. Morgen Culver says

    My son was watching a movie from 2011, and a Spooky Buddies promo came on and they showed the same house. Did they use the shell to film any other movies that you know of?

    • I’m not sure. I’m pretty sure I remember reading somewhere that it was torn down right after the movie was finished. Morgen, scroll down on this page at Wikipedia to the part under the heading “Production.”
      The Practical Magic house was torn down after the movie was over, but from that Wiki article, it sounds like the exterior was modeled after another home in that area. So maybe it was the other home that you guys saw in the Spooky Buddies promo.

  73. Loved the movie. I live across from whidbey island in Port Townsend WA. I didn’t know it was filmed nearby.

  74. The reason they wouldn’t build a real house is the exterior is cheap to build. No electrical, no plumbing, HVAC, no insulation, interior walls, building codes, neighborhood/zoning restrictions, etc. Just a LOT of plywood. Many coastal areas have very restrictive building codes. For instance sewage, where’s it going to go so close to the water? Just too complicated for one movie. And time-wise it could take years to build and finish a real house the size/design vs a shell.. Still love it! Nancy

  75. Bell jars or cloches are still widely in use in gardening. A low cost version is using a 1 gallon milk jug, cut off the bottom, take off the lid and add a slim stake to held in place. Works great (I’m a master gardener)! Nancy

  76. I also adore this house and story. My adult daughter and I watch it every year. It was not a successful movie, it does have some flaws, but I can handle flaws. 🙂 Griffin Dunne is the director, I think.

    I read the book first. Alice Hoffman is a wonderful author. She has several great books. Best, Mary

  77. I absolutely refuse to believe that this masterpiece home was torn down and discarded, I would dedicate my life to reassembling this house if only to remind future generations how beautiful life can be. I still feel it is tucked away in a movie storage barn somewhere. Someone at the time of the
    dismantling knows of its whereabouts, in my opinion and I sure I,m not alone in what I say, this house / home could have been one of Americas most visited attractions for many many years to come an icon of the American history and dreams.

    • From what I’ve read, homes that are built like this where they only use them for exterior shots, are often nothing more than a shell/facade. So there’s usually nothing inside at all, just the exterior. All the scenes are filmed on a set. It’s a great house and it would be wonderful if someone would build the real thing!

      • I watched a “making of” for the movie. Griffin Dunne said that the land was tribal land and the only way to use it was to agree to return it back to exactly like it was before they were there. So they had to remove everything.

  78. I absolutely loved this book, and the adaptation of the book to the movie. I immediately had to own it as soon as I saw it. Unfortunately your article has a few incorrect bits of information. Please forgive me, but my OCD just had to comment and interject. 1.) The town was not supposed to be in the south (your Magnolia street reference) As the book states- It’s a town in Massachusetts.
    2.) The tower in the home is not a light house tower. It is called a “widows walk or a “captain’s walk” The name is said to come from the wives of mariners, who would watch for their spouses’ return, often in vain as the ocean took the lives of many mariners, leaving the women widows. In other coastal towns, the platforms were called a Captain’s Walk, as they topped the homes of the more affluent captains; supposedly, ship owners and captains- would use them to search the horizon for their ship fleets due in port.
    3.) The back room is not a butlers pantry. This part of a conservatory or greenhouse. In Victorian times the botanical/horticultural era was booming. The way to show your wealth while having extravagant dinner parties – was to cook, decorate, and bake with herbs and flowers grown from your own hands. It was also called Victorian Floriology.
    I am a 4th generation wiccan, with a degree in art, architecture history, and interior design. Have a blessed day.

    • Hi Melanie,

      Thanks for your comment. I pulled all my information from the article in Victoria Magazine referenced in this post. I try to always do a bit research before writing a post, so when I got your comment I re-checked the magazine (which I still have) and confirmed everything once again.

      The easiest thing for me to do would just be to refer you to the article which is in the October 1998 Victoria Magazine. However, I know that article would be difficult to find this many years later, as it was for me when I decided to create this post. I ended up finding a copy of the magazine on eBay where I purchased it before writing the article. The article starts on page 80 and goes through page 88. I’m attaching some pictures for you, snapped this morning with my cell phone from the article in Victoria Magazine.

      Perhaps the information in the book was different from the screenplay of the movie. My post is about the movie, primarily the house in the movie. I know I’ll never read the book because as mentioned in the beginning of this post, I didn’t really care for the storyline, it was the house I loved.

      1. I didn’t say the house was located in the south. What I said in this post was that (in the movie) it sounded like they wanted us to think it was located in the south since the name of the street where the house is located is, Magnolia Street. Magnolia trees are typically associated with the southern region of the United States. I was born in Georgia and Magnolia trees are everywhere here in the south. I have a huge Southern Magnolia Grandiflora in my front yard; it’s one of my favorite trees.

      2. I’m very familiar with a Widow’s Walks. If you’ve been reading BNOTP for very long, you would know that I often point them out when I share a house tour of a coastal home that I love. However, here’s the information I found in Victoria Magazine, again about the house in the movie, not the book.

      3. I’m somewhat familiar with the Victorian era and how they dined, having read a fair amount about it when I was collecting the odd and unusual pieces to complete my silver pattern. The Victorians love for dining and entertaining is why we have strawberry forks, lemon forks, pickle forks, cutlery just for eating fish, etc… They loved showing off all their silver which included having a different piece of silver for every need. Since you enjoy the Victorian period, you might enjoy the book Sterling Silver Flatware by Richard Osterberg. It’s filled with gorgeous antique silver flatware that the Victorians would have used back in the day. I love drooling over the beautiful silver displayed throughout the book.

      Thanks again for your perspective and comment. Again, my post was written about the information I learned about the movie during my “research” phase. I never read the book and never will since I didn’t especially care for the movie…but adored the house!

  79. I think they’ve copied the Practical Magic kitchen for the Netflix Chilling Adventures of Sabrina series. And it’s painted an old turquoise color. It looks exactly the same but a bigger set.

  80. I know this is nearly a decade after you wrote this, but I still have to say I love this movie and this house! I enjoyed your article and I’m so sorry you didn’t like the movie. To me it touched home on love, sisterhood and enduring bullies. The time honored addage, don’t listen to gossip.
    Any who, if I won a the lottery I would definately use this house as a template for building my home, but I’d add a basement. Got have a good dungeon… just kidding. I just love the idea of a dark, cool basement for those too hot days. To get away and enjoy some good movies.
    Thanks for the Tour!

  81. Hi there! I am obsessed with this house, and I discovered–as I was watching the DVD for the bazilyionth time–is the entrance to the butler’s pantry (where you’ll see their fridge!) is inside the breakfast area (behind where Aunt Francis is sitting in the nighttime scene above and where Gilling is sitting gazing at a photograph of Jimmy’s victims), and the door Antonia looks out to keep an eye out for officer Hallet opens out just onto the opposite side of the kitchen cupboards (Gillian is standing across from that door in the pic. of her grasping the stairs with the phone on the wall).

  82. Nancy ballmann says

    So I wanted to share with you the tow truck is a local business and is still in business today with the same owner

  83. Tracy Hicks says

    Thank you for your lovely article. The movie took place in Massachusetts. The room you referred to as part of the conservatory where the Aunts & the Sisters do their “mixing & measuring” is actually called a stillroom. It’s where the leaves & roots of plants are cured, then prepared into medicines & stored.

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