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Ice Cream Truck Sculpture

Warm weather brings childhood memories of an ice cream truck sounding and strolling neighborhood streets.  In our recent workshop ~ BEEP BEEP! SWEET TREATS, artists created ~ Ice Cream Truck Sculptures!  Love that we still have a few days to celebrate and soak up summer!  The workshop week was spectacular and our mini makers were beaming to exhibit their one-of-a-kind creations.  Along with an ice cream truck, each artist also created a mini picnic table and  handmade sweet treats for imaginative + interactive play!  Turn it up and take a peek at our short + sweet clip to an ice cream truck melody, highlighting the wondrous week!

You may have seen our Collaged Ice Cream Cones created with children in our outdoor art studio for a recent downtown event.  My friend Bar Rucci, over at Art Bar Blog was a huge inspiration in creating these paper sprinkled + cherry topped cones.  Take a look at her fantastic process creating Paper Mache Ice Cream Sundaes and Cardboard Ice Cream Cones!  Here’s a little secret, Barbara has a beyond inspiring book coming out this fall which I’ve had the opportunity to preview (cover to cover) and preorder ~ Art Workshop for Children: How to Foster Original Thinking with more than 25 Process Art Experiences.  All I can say is reserve your copy today, it’s truly one of the BEST BOOKS for creating with children that’s ever hit the printing press.  Personally promise it will be a studio go-to and gem that you’ll open again and again!

On a side note, Handmade Charlotte just shared the cutest + tiniest + tastiest treat, Gingerbread Ice Cream Trucks!  Maybe you’ve also seen Hello Wonderful’s DIY Pretend Play Ice Cream Cones using plaster?  Just a wee bit in love with both ideas!

Enrollment is currently underway and filling quickly for our 2016/17 School Year {mixed-media + hands-on} Art Workshops.  Follow our artful adventure on Instagram and Facebook, would absolutely love to connect, collaborate, and create community through children + creativity!


  • Photo box
  • Light chipboard and one ply cardboard
  • Utility knife for an adult to use
  • Pencil + Scissors + Ruler
  • Handmade pattern
  • Duck tape and masking tape
  • Brown paper bags + papier-mache + bowl
  • Paint- acrylic + tempera multi-color
  • Foil
  • Cardboard rolls
  • White glue + hot glue gun + hot glue
  • Tiny cut colored paper pieces
  • Polymer clay in white
  • Grafix plastic craft sheet
  • Wooden sticks
  • Glitter foam and colored foam
  • Heavy ply cardboard or four black plastic lids
  • Embellishments- decorative paper straws, mini pom pom garland, pom poms, fringe and more!


ONE  Let the construction begin!  Traditional photo boxes (7 1/4 x 11″) were used for the base structure.  Each artist used a simple handmade pattern and chipboard to construct the front end and front sides of their truck which included the roof, windshield, hood, grill and side pieces.  Duck tape was used to attach.  The side window of the truck was pre-cut by an adult with an narrow utility knife to create a curtain for the window and a ledge for serving.  The flaps were then reinforced with duck tape.  See inside of box photo below.

TWO  Two pieces of chipboard were cut and added on the lower (opposite of window side or back side) so the truck was not completely open.  A narrow piece was pre-cut from the box lid to create the truck’s box top to add height and detail.  This piece was taped to secure.

THREE  Once the truck was fully constructed, it was then paper mache and dried overnight on a wire rack so it could fully dry.

ice cream truck sculptures |

FOUR  Each truck was then primed with white acrylic paint and dried.

FIVE  A mini picnic table was constructed using cardboard rolls for legs and a section of the photo box lid for the table top.  Dip cardboard roll ends in white glue and position to balance the table.  Place upside down to dry overnight.

SIX  Mark the lower stripe with a ruler.  Paint a single stripe going around the base of the truck using tempera paint.  Leave grill of truck white.  Paint top of the truck the same color and paint the box top an exciting accent color.  Loved working with traditional ice cream colors!

SEVEN  Create a striped curtain using colored duck tape.  Tear or cut.  Cover a piece of paper, the same size as the cardboard curtain, to then attach onto the cardboard curtain flap of the truck with white glue.

EIGHT  After constructing a simple ice cream cone using foil, a thin tissue paper overlay, and paper mache, dry overnight.  Then paint, dry and embellish with paper sprinkles by brushing on white glue and sprinkling.  A huge thank you to Art Bar Blog for the Paper Mache With Kids Ice Cream Sundae inspiration!  You can go here for the full details on ice cream making!

Yes, the flavors just about melted in your mouth!

NINE  Sculpt tiny + sweet treats out of white polymer clay.  Artists added small sticks for handles for popsicles and cotton candy.  Bake following clay directions and paint with a tiny brush.  We used glossy, satin, and shimmer acrylic paint from Target’s Handmade Modern collection.  Use glitter foam to create a grill and headlights on the front of the truck.  Use Grafix Plastic Craft Sheets for an easy to cut windshield and windows, but keep the blue protective coat on the plastic because it’s the perfect color!  Use white glue to attach and use masking tape to secure until dry.

TEN  With adult assistance, use hot glue to attach mini pom pom garland, an ice cream cone on top of the truck, and wheels either made from heavy ply cardboard and paint or from four up-cycled black plastic lids.

On our last workshop, all artists celebrated with an ice cream social which included a wide array of ice cream toppings, waffle bowls, mini balls of cotton candy, cream cheese bagels with sprinkles and more!  The week was a sweet adventure!

It was incredible celebrating with a mini-maker exhibit for friends and families of each artist!  The celebration was lively, colorful, and scrumptious!  Here’s a peek at our current group of mini-makers in our workshop ~ Wee Wanderlust + Wondrous Weavings.  Yes, we need to recruit some boys to join in on all this, FUN!

What a fabulous group of mini-makers.  Many of these artists have been creating with us in the studio since they were just six-years-old!  So wonderful being part of childhood!  Thank you for following along on the artful adventure of creating with children!  Enjoy these last few days of summertime fun!


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