Saturday, July 14, 2012

The ice cream stall

When this whole Little Fair on the Prairie project first came up, it was suggested that the St. Albert club members include their pedlar's carts that had been done for a previous show. Okay, that's one display done.

Since I had all those beautiful plants that I had bought from Connie Stitt awhile back, I said I would do a garden stall. Off to a great start! Now completed! That's two!

Then I opened my big mouth and said I would do an ice cream stall. That's three!

Then we went to Amber's big sale of miniatures and I found the beautiful stall made by John Greer, a late member of MEE. It just spoke to me and from it came the St. Albert Public Library stall. That's four!

My original intention was to make an ice cream stall similar to Doreen P.'s. What did it matter that I had given away all the tubs of ice cream when I had the great "clean out my stash" giveaway! I could always make more. VBG

Several Christmases ago, DS Carol had given me a gorgeous lace angel that was enclosed in a round box she had made. I knew the box would come in handy 'sometime' so it has been sitting in my stash - just waiting to be made into an ice cream stall.

So I removed the wrapping paper from it:

I didn't want the front completely open like Doreen's - just wanted a very big window so you'd still be able to see the freezers, etc.

Just one problem! This is made from the tube forms that are used to form cement. It's only about 3/16" thick but it's SOLID. I'd have to get out my sabre saw and try to cut a rectangle out of a curved surface...not something I was particularly anxious to do.

Also by now, time is running shorter, my enthusiasm has waned, and I want to simplify this project drastically! Plus, quite honestly, I'm running short of display room and would rather make something that I can dispose of after The Fair.

So last week before Joanne and Barb came over for a work session, I was tidying up the kitchen and went to throw away this empty ice cream cone box. It's the perfect size for a stall and if I cut the service window small enough and put a doll behind it, you won't be able to see inside and I won't have to make the freezer or anything else inside.

My original thought was to use the box pretty much "as is" but the miniature ice cream cones I have are the regular kind, not cups, plus once I cut the counter out, most of the effect of the filled cups will be gone anyway.

The original idea was to cover the sides with matboard and put a matboard cover on the top flap so I would still have access to the inside of the box to put my doll in place.

But I got to Joanne's and realized that I'd left a couple sheets of matboard at home and had to borrow some from Joanne to make the side pieces below. In order to make the best use of the matboard, the side pieces were cut so they don't quite come to the top of the box. At which point I decided to make a removeable cover for the stall.

Below: The pictures of the one, two and three scoop cones will have prices below them. That will go on one side of the window and the flavour list on the other.

The two pieces below will go on the sides of the box.

TIP: When you stop for lunch, make sure you rinse out your brush (I was using Yes glue) before you eat. BUT if you don't and the glue dries HARD, all is not totally lost. Tear off the foam and you're left with a handy/dandy glue spreader!

Another "Learn the Hard Way" TIP: Yes glue and glossy cardboard don't particularly do well together. (Think maybe my first clue should have been with the Yes glue pilled up on the outside of the box.) It was too late for that first side of the box - we'll see what happens when the glue dries - but I've lightly sanded the rest of the box to create some 'tooth'.

Oh, this is slow going. The actual work only takes minutes but each "wall" has to be added individually and weighted until the glue dries.

The glue has dried for the sides and back. Now waiting for the front piece to dry in place.

Along the way I've prepared some things for later.

Before I glued the back piece on, I scored where the door would go. I cut a door frame from coffee stirrers, then stained it.

I cut the matboard for the front and decided how big the opening for the counter would be. The doll from Pat that I had planned to use was a bit tall but fortunately this one (about 3/4" shorter) was in my stash and the top from Pat's doll fits her.

Cut out counter opening,

Then traced the opening on the front of the box and cut it out also.

The counter is cut and ready to install.

Once this last bit of glue dries, I can put on the door frame, install the counter and glue on the price and flavour signs.

I DID SOMETHING RIGHT! I installed the counter, then added the signs.If I had put on the signs, then tried to install the counter, it wouldn't have worked.

That just leaves the lid to be made.

I am so angry and frustrated. Ordinarily, I would design the lid on the computer, including the stall name, print it on card stock - a few cuts and folds and it would be finished.

But, WAIT!!! I can't print on card stock with this fancy new printer!!!!!!!!!!!

So now I have to transfer the pattern to the card stock and do the name by hand. Not a happy camper! Well, then I decided to print the stall sign separately and glue it above the counter opening.

I'm declaring this finished! Just noticed that I haven't put the prices on  the sign but that's a minor detail at this point.

Left side:

Added the door frame and a door handle made from a watch stem. Big OOPS here as I had cut the top piece of the door frame too short and had to cut another one and stain it. In terms of time, I had 10s of door handles in my 'hardware' box but I wanted one that didn't cost me anything....

My first thought was the plug from a halogen light bulb

But I couldn't find one in my 'Hardware' box. So then I looked for a watch stem. Found one - but it took about 20 minutes of digging! Then had to drill a hole and install it.

Right side:

When I went to put the doll inside, I couldn't find the bottom half of my doll stand so I just glued a film canister in place and put her legs in that. Actually sturdier than a doll stand.

The furniture and the boy and dog with the ice cream cone are off the lawn between my two houses. Thanks very much to Doreen for the idea of the RL ice cream scoop on top of the stall - works well with the name of the stall - which just came to me.

I did go back through this and try to make sure I had mentioned all the times I had goofed and/or run into trouble - especially for Natasha who had a really bad miniature day a couple days ago.

Hon, whether you've been doing this one year or thirty five - sometimes things just don't work out the way you originally planned and you have to regroup. I just wish I had come as far in my first couple years as you have in your first.


  1. My compliments on your creativity.If you need anything printed on cardstock let me know-my printer works with cardstock-Doesn't use that much ink-I have a Kodak printer


    1. Thanks for the offer Margaret. Joanne and my sister Shirley would print anything I needed but the frustration is in buying a brand new printer and not being able to use it for something I really need to do.

      Plus let's face it, when you're in the middle of a project, you want to have that printed item RIGHT NOW!