May 24, 2024 - Culture

Get your own custom wand, lightsaber in Des Moines

Two stuffed owls with three wands stacked in front of them

Customizable wands at WC Outpost. Photo: Courtesy of Whimsy Cellar

If you've ever wanted to immerse yourself in fantasy, there's a new shop at Valley West Mall that can help.

Driving the news: WC Outpost is a new fantasy and sci-fi shop selling custom lightsabers, wands and other cosplay and geeky needs.

  • Owners Marjory and Michael Chaffin opened the shop this month on the lower east side of the mall.

How it started: Marjory started selling homemade items at craft shows a decade ago, but expanded after her husband suggested she try selling more niche "nerd" items.

  • Big fans of "Harry Potter," "Lord of the Rings" and "Star Wars" themselves, they found success selling fun pieces like wands, dragon eggs and lightsabers at conventions.

Zoom in: WC Outpost specializes in custom items, including handmade carved wands that come with their own backstories.

  • The lightsabers can go as far as "screen accurate" costuming that meets the standards of cosplay groups like 501st Legion. Customers can choose everything from blade style to motion controls and sound.

The intrigue: Prices range from $10 beginner wands to $800-$900 lightsabers.

If you go: Shop hours vary, but it's typically open 12-7pm Tuesday-Friday and 10am-7pm Sunday.

Custom light saber parts inside a glass case
Customizable lightsabers. Photo: Courtesy of Whimsy Cellar

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