Retail Design
One of my recent freelance projects was for friends and constituted the realization of a dream. A friend told me that her husband had always fantasized about opening his own ice cream shop. We talked at length about it and I promised that if ever he decided to go through with it to consider me available to design it. A year and a half later we opened the Manhattan Beach Creamery in the small town of Manhattan Beach CA.

from Concept to Creamery
Early concept scribbles created around the kitchen table as we dreamt up the ice cream shop

Initial Brainstorming

Early on we got together to discuss and sketch up ideas for what kind of shop they wanted to build. Having been residents of Manhattan Beach for years they wanted to create a space that was evocative of the laid back "Beach as Lifestyle" existence of the town, while still retaining the feel of an old fashioned ice cream parlor.


Once we found the perfect store location I assembled the assorted concepts into the existing space

Exterior Elevation
Before & After

Once we had worked out the specifics on the interior we set to work on transforming the existing exterior into something more fitting an Ice Cream Shop.

The above illustration is the color board used by Themescape to paint the faux architecture details. We chose a trompe l'oiel exterior treatment because we felt it most fitting for the whimsy we were trying to achieve on the interior.

Custom Antiques

As part of the interior we wanted to fill the shop with nostalgic ice cream and beach related signs. After haunting local antique shops and eBay we discovered that many ice cream related signs advertise other people's products... so, we decided to design our own.

We created vintage graphics that were later painted by a local sign painter then hung in the shop.


To view photos of the finished Ice Cream Shop CLICK HERE