The Story

Creating an ice cream shop had always been a dream for our client. Lindsay had a clear vision for her shop and wanted to create a place full of fun and joy where both kids and parents would feel welcome.

The vision began to take shape in the form of a pop-up shop, a temporary location where Lindsay could test her ideas and the market. Sundae School would serve locally made “real” ice cream and its design took on a very hands-on and iterative approach. We wanted to see how the character of the space would unfold rather than design everything in advance. The pop-up space was located in the ground-floor retail of a newly built mixed-use development. It featured high ceilings, a clear window wall along its entrance and exposed mechanical.

We came up with the concept “Factory Fun” as in an interesting, raw space with fun accents and details. We also thought about an ice cream factory serving-up big scoops of delicious ice cream with sprinkles, gummy bears, cookie-crumble and handmade caramel or peanut butter sauce on top.

The biggest challenge was the schedule and the limited duration that the shop would be open. The real risk was deciding where to spend money knowing the shop would close at the end of the ice cream season. Finding the balance meant we needed to think fast, be proactive and “get it done” no matter what. We’re grateful to our client whose confidence and faith in our abilities allowed us the room we needed to work and complete the project on time!

We modelled the shop using virtual reality to help determine the ideal flow inside the shop and ensure the best ice cream buying and eating experience. Lindsay came into the office and was able to experience her space and make comments before construction began. We collaborated on the design every step of the way.

The furniture in the shop was very much based on a retro classroom. The tables and ice cream counter or “teacher’s desk” were custom designed by Linebox. The ice cream counter is key feature in the shop and was inspired by a “teacher’s desk” with real white oak hardwood, vintage knobs and a painted metal frame in the shop’s theme colours. It integrates a lot of storage, wiring and other functionalities, yet still looks like a desk.

Millwork Design: Linebox Studio
Millwork Production: Marfoglia
Photography: Ashley Fraser