We had a lovely outdoor summer wedding reception, and the ice-sculptures on the buffet added a wonderful touch! Bill worked with us to help us decide the best ice-sculptures for our particular event and everyone commented how beautiful they were. We even had our shrimp boat made out of ice...nice! Thanks so much for helping to make our day special.
We were so glad to find Bill Bywater. Bill carved an ice castle that was the focal point of our cocktail reception. He delivered on time, was reasonable, and the sculpture was truly a work of art!
Beautiful sculptures. Professional work. Bill's original ice sculptures always add a great unique touch to the reception.
The absolute finishing touch for your event. Outstanding.....
I have been providing amazing custom ice carvings for over fifteen years and have a Bachelors degree in sculpture. I do all my own carving and delivery. Each carving comes with a display/drip tray and florescent back lighting. I use a 300lb crystal clear block and work with each customer to produce a beautiful, unique sculpture for each event. A typical carving costs $350. Please use my on line form to tell me what, when and where you want your carving(s). Order a unique ice carving
These are some frequently asked questions, answered by professional commercial sculptor, Bill Bywater.
What do you do, exactly? Do you use ice molds? How often do the ice carvings melt? How much do ice carvings cost? How long do ice carvings last? Can ice carvings be displayed outside in the sun? Do you have any tips for using ice carvings as party decorations? Do you really use blow torches and chain saws? How did you become an ice sculptor? Does it bother you to put so much work into an ice carving that you know is going to melt away? Where are you located? How far in advance of my event do I need to contact you?
What do you do, exactly?
I create unique, original ice carvings for special events. After being contacted by the host or coordinator for an event, I consult with them to get an understanding of the type of party or event they are planning and to find out if they already have an idea of the type of ice sculpture design they would like. Then I design , discuss, carve and deliver their ice carvings to their event or freezer. I include a drip/display tray and florescent back lighting with each delivery.
Of course, if the event is an ice carving demonstration, I carve the sculpture on site during the event using power tools and chisels.
Do you use ice molds?
Many ice carving companies use molds or preprogrammed routers but I do not. The ice carvings I create are unique and personalized, and each one is hand sculpted by me.
How often do the ice carvings melt?
How much do ice carvings cost?
A typical price could be $350 for a single block carving like the number 40 for a birthday party delivered to Orange, Duchess, Ulster, Putnam or Rockland County. I would bring it to the event an hour before starting time and set it up with a drip/display tray and back lighting.
Another project could be doing a single block demonstration carving for a town park or corporate event in front of a crowd between one and two hours for $500.
Because every ice sculpture I create is designed and carved exclusively for each event, costs vary. Often, the cost is not determined by the design, unless the sculpture requires more than one block of ice. Usually the cost is determined by other factors specific to the event, such as its location. Because the amount of lead time is a factor in the cost, I encourage clients to get in touch with me as far in advance of their event as possible, three weeks at least.
How long do ice carvings last?
Ice carvings will be in good form for three hours and components like wings and fins get more ethereal as they melt. I do not recommend human compositions like ballerinas or soldiers because the facial features soon wash out.
Can ice carvings be displayed outside in the sun?
The cold of winter is a great time to enjoy ice carvings outside for weeks at a time, but in winter or summer the ultraviolet light of sunshine will fracture the ice like a crystal chandelier. For this reason your outside sculpture will need to stay out of direct sunlight. The same is true for outside ice carving demonstrations. Consistent shade can often be found on the north side of a building.
Do you have any tips for using ice carvings as party decorations?
See my page on Six Party Tips.
Do you really use blow torches and chain saws?
How did you become an ice sculptor?
I have a Bachelors Degree in Studio Art with a sculpture concentration from the College of St Rose in Albany, NY. In 1988 I was asked by the owners of a French Restaurant in Newburgh to represent them at a carving competition. (Most ice carvers are chefs.) While attending that carving event and many others I became more familiar with the tools and techniques specific to ice.
Does it bother you to put so much work into an ice carving that you know is going to melt away?
No, because of the fleeting nature of ice as a sculpting medium it can actually be very freeing as opposed to wood or stone.
Where are you located?
I am located in Orange County New York and serve the surrounding area including Western Connecticut and Northern New Jersey.
How far in advance of my event do I need to contact you?
A minimum of three weeks is recommended but some dates do get blocked off so if you know you will be wanting an ice carving please contact me earlier.
(Contact Bill by using his online contact form.)
Party style! 6 Tips for using ice carvings for maximum impact.
1. Mark the entrance to the event with an ice carving
For your guests, one of the most crucial moments of your event is their arrival. Guests decide in the first few minutes of a party whether or not they will enjoy themselves. An ice carving at the event entrance tells guests that they have arrived at the party and they are about have a great time. When using an ice carving to mark the entrance to the event, choose a design that sets the mood, captures the theme, or serves as signage with welcoming words carved into the ice sculpture.
2. Create a visual or spatial focal point
An eye-catching ice carving creates a visual focal point that helps set the mood and pull a party together. The decor for an elegant cocktail reception, for example, might feature a large vase carved from ice and filled with a sumptuous bouquet of flowers. Party planners often place ice sculptures on buffet tables, but you can place an ice carving anywhere in the room provided it sits on a stable table or platform. For maximum impact, place the ice carving where people will see it as they walk in the door.
In a darkened reception room or at a party outside at night you can add even more drama by lighting the sculpture, either by bathing it in light from above or by placing it on a light box and lighting it from below. If you think that this technique would be great for your party decor make sure you ask any prospective ice sculptors you are considering if they have lighting equipment before you choose your ice sculptor.
3. Serve chilled food or beverages from ice carvings
An ice sculpture can do double duty when used to display and serve chilled beverages and food such as wine, champagne, or shrimp. Imagine an ice carving of a shrimp boat filled with shrimp. Or make an even bigger impact by serving beverages from a bar carved from a blocks of ice!
4. Entertain guests with an ice carving demonstration
Not only will an ice carving demonstration entertain your guests, the finished sculpture can become a focal point of the event. Ice carving demonstrations can be performed indoors or outdoors all year round, even in the summer.
5. Create a photo opportunity for publicity or guest momentos.
When guests can interact with an ice sculpture, the cameras come out! Your guests will want to have their picture taken sitting on an ice throne or in a winter sleigh carved from ice. And the photographs make fun publicity shots or personal mementos that your guests will take away with them. You may even want to provide a photographer to take photos that you can give to your guests.
6. Delight your guests with an ice carving that is unique.
The most memorable parties include some special element that surprises and delights your guests. Ice carvings can provide that special element, and they make the biggest impact when they are unique and perfectly suited to the occasion. Most ice carving companies offer only a limited range of ice carving designs that they have used for many clients. The more often your guests see these standard ice carvings, the less impact the ice carvings have. If you want your ice carving to make an impact, make sure it is unique. Make sure it has been designed especially for you to express your personal style and the style of your event.
Order a unique ice carving for your next event now!