It has been under way for a while, but finally Harry and his friends can now get a sweet treat while doing their shopping at Diagon Alley. This model of Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlour supplements the buildings I’ve previously designed: Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes and the Flourish and Blotts bookstore. Let’s take a closer look…
In the survey I did after completing Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes, most votes for what building to do next were for the Flourish and Blotts bookstore, which is now also completed. Runner up was the Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlour, so that was an obvious one to continue with – in particular when I realised it at the Diagon Alley at the Harry Potter Studios Tour in London it was right next to the bookstore (which again was next to the Weasleys’ joke shop), and thus a natural extension.
I particularly remembered the ice cream parlour from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, as he frequently visited the place while staying at The Leaky Cauldron. He was often doing his homework there and Mr Fortescue offered his assistance.
But looking further into it, the existence of and ice cream shop is apparent already from Harry Potter’s very first visit to Diagon Alley, where Hagrid have him a large chocolate and raspberry flavoured ice cream.
Harry also bought ice cream for himself, Ron and Hermione when they visited Diagon Alley art the beginning of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
Much later, after Voldemort’s return, we learn through Bill Weasley that Mr Fortescue had disappeared and the parlour boarded up.
In the Harry Potter Studios set, the shop is almost white. My memory however has it slightly pink, but it may have been from the coloured lights in the ceiling cycling through day and nighttime lighting effects. So some of my photo’s show it clearly white, others with a pinkish tint.
When I realised it was the neighbouring building as the bookstore I had just stated on, sharing a lot of the same design elements (like the big bay window), I started collecting bricks to do this one as well. To a large extent it was done in parallel, typically tailing the book store slightly. As for colour, I decided against doing white building with white windows and moved bravely ahead with pink.
I quickly realised that simply using pink would be way too “LEGO Friends” like. Like the book store I decided to break it up with older pink, round plates, tiles, etc to give it a more rough look. It worked sufficiently well for me to keep the pink colour.
One difference (seen on the very first photo) between Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream Parlour and Flourish & Blotts book store is that the former has a cellar windows underneath the bay window. To make this possible, I had to create a slope the buildings were standing on, raising the ground level two plates between where the cellar window is and where the book store starts. While part intensive, it does however add character to the overall build, so I’m glad I took that path.
Knock – knock, who is there?
As the building started to take shape, also on the inside, I realised I needed some figures to give it some life. From the original LEGO Movie sets, I found Mike and Jo who had an ice cream van and converted them into “flesh” characters. There are now the serving ice cream. Florean himself may be on vacation…
A wizard mum with her daughter were their customers.
I haven’t found any great detail about the interior of the shop giving me a large degree of freedom in designing this. But as the early photo’s show, above the bay window two café chairs and a small table is found (I think for decoration rather than use). However, I decided to use the café style furniture inside the shop as well, and reverse engineered a suitable café chair from a photo I found using the new wands on a sprue as the back.
It is totally flimsy the way I did it, but everything is held in place without use of any glue/blu-tack.
The completed building
Here is the completed building from the front. Plenty of texture added to facade. Roof is exactly the same construction based on cheese slopes used for the neighbouring book store. While the buildings otherwise have different colours, using same colour scheme for the roof also adds to the consistency of the buildings.
And here is another photo from a slightly different angle, better showing the cellar window.
Two floors can be found inside. Upstairs is the seating for enjoying your ice cream treat, and downstairs with the shop itself. The use of the lamps upstairs is an attempt add a little bit of wizard feel to the shop.
Inside the shop is a soft-ice maker (wizards can probably just use a wand, but I needed something in there), a pot of tea with cups, and a selection of 6 different ice creams to scoop up into cones.
Sourcing six different colours of ice cream scoops took some effort, but I’m finally there. Mike has plenty of spare cones to serve his wizarding customers.
The expanded Diagon Alley
The finished building looks great next to the bookstore.
Here’s another photo I took of the setup – covering the three buildings shown in my first photo from Harry Potter Studios in London. I haven’t taken too may other photos as I’ve been too busy progressing the other side of Diagon Alley.
That’s all folks!
Head over to the locations page to have a look at the other buildings and rooms featured on this blog. Another three Diagon Alley buildings are almost complete and a fourth is coming along. So expect more here soon.
Till then, Build the Magic!