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How to Make a Sugar Cube Igloo

How To Make A Sugar Cube Igloo
How To Make A Sugar Cube Igloo | Source

Craft a Uniquely Canadian Igloo Decoration from Sugar Cubes, Glue and Styrofoam Balls

Up here in Canada, the snow has started to fall and the days have grown colder and shorter. It's time to pull our winter boots on and bundle up in our heavy parkas and head out into the frozen tundra to build snow homes strong enough to survive the cold, harsh Canadian winter. Of course, I am just joking, but hundreds of years ago, people actually did live in igloos.

The igloo, or snow house, is a widely recognized Canadian icon. Aside from the good-humored jokes about Canadians living in igloos, they play an integral role in Canadian history. The Inuit people invented the igloo hundreds of years ago to provide temporary shelter from the cold climate and winter tundra of the Arctic while on fishing and hunting expeditions.

In this fun crafting activity, learn how to make an igloo without having to leave the warmth and comfort of your own home.

Instead, I will show you how to make an igloo using sugar cubes, styrofoam craft balls, and a hot glue gun. There is no need to bundle up and go outside in the cold in this fun Canadian activity.

This is an easy interactive craft that is helpful in teaching students about the Inuit people of Canada and the basic structures of igloos. Not only are they great for school, they make great decorations for a holiday themed display or as unique Canadian party favors.

They are super durable and will keep indefinitely. Wrap them up in tissue paper and store them in a shoe box until you are ready to use them again. Decorate your North Pole village for Christmas and then use them as table decorations during Canada Day festivities.

Gather Your Materials and Let's Get Started!

Sugar Cube Igloo Supplies
Sugar Cube Igloo Supplies | Source

Each Styrofoam Ball Yields Two Sugar Cube Snow Houses

FloraCraft Packaged Styrofoam Balls, 2 1/2-Inch-Snowballs, White, 6 Per Package
FloraCraft Packaged Styrofoam Balls, 2 1/2-Inch-Snowballs, White, 6 Per Package

I use 2.5" Styrofoam balls, which is the smallest size you can use that will accommodate the size and shape of sugar cubes. The larger the size of ball you use, the larger the igloo will be. Using a few different size balls, you can make a whole snow village.

 

Supplies:

  • 2.5 " styrofoam balls
  • sugar cubes
  • glue gun
  • glue sticks

A Few Tips Before You Start

  • Because sugar cubes are square and uniform in size, you will not be able to make a perfectly formed igloo. There will be gaps, cracks and holes and the cubes won't line up evenly all the way around, but that only adds to the charm of these little snow homes.
  • Hot glue is very forgiving, so if you make a mistake or don't like the look of the arrangement, you can gently peel the sugar cube off the styrofoam and start again. Don't fuss over it too much though!
  • To get the curved, round shape of the dome, I start building the igloo from the top and work my way down. If you build the snow house from the bottom up, you will end up with a more angular shaped igloo.

Lets Get Crafting, Eh!

Step 1

Cut the styrofoam ball in half using a sharp knife. A dull knife may cause the ball to crumble or leave uneven edges. Each ball makes two igloos.

Step 1
Step 1 | Source

Step 2

Begin building your igloo by laying half a styrofoam ball flat side down on the table and place a small dollop of hot glue on the top center of the dome.

Step 2
Step 2 | Source

Step 3

Place one sugar cube on top of the glue and press down gently.

Step 3
Step 3 | Source

Step 4

Make your next layer by gluing a ring of sugar cubes around the center block resembling the shape of a flower.

Step 4
Step 4 | Source

Step 5

Start the third layer by gluing a cube underneath and in the middle of two cubes from the second layer.

Step 5
Step 5 | Source

Step 6

Continue gluing the blocks around the ball to form a complete circle.

Step 6
Step 6 | Source

Step 7

To make the fourth layer, repeat the instructions above, only this time, the cubes should line up with the bottom edge of the ball.

Step 7
Step 7 | Source

Step 8

Next, we will be adding a base. Glue a ring of sugar cubes to the bottom of the fourth layer since we no longer have any styrofoam left to attach them to.

Step 8
Step 8 | Source

Step 9

Make a doorway by gently prying off two cubes that are vertically stacked together. Now we can see right inside the igloo.

Step 9
Step 9 | Source

Step 10

Next, we will make an arch for the doorway. Lay the cubes on the table and one by one, glue the edges of the sugar cubes together like so, making sure to angle.

Step 10
Step 10 | Source

Step 11

This is what it should look like when it is finished.

Step 11
Step 11 | Source

Step 12

Squeeze a line of hot glue around the arch and position it in the doorway of the igloo.

Step 12
Step 12 | Source

Step 13

Pull off all the strings of glue and we are done! This sugar cube igloo craft is super easy and each snow home takes only about 5 minutes to make.

To Make This a Fun & Edible Craft for Kids, Use Royal Icing to Glue the Cubes Together Instead!

You Can Even Make a Sugar Cube Fire Pit and a Couple of Inukshuk Statues to Go Along with the Igloos
You Can Even Make a Sugar Cube Fire Pit and a Couple of Inukshuk Statues to Go Along with the Igloos | Source

Uniquely Canadian Decorations

Canadian Flag Picks 50/Pkg-2.75"
Canadian Flag Picks 50/Pkg-2.75"

I love using these Canadian flag picks for dressing up simple party foods and table displays. They are also perfect for using with the sugar cube igloo craft.

 

Extra Fun Features

  • To make the sugar cube fire pit, I painted a metal jar lid white. After it dried, I glued sugar cubes around the outer rim of the lid, being careful to leave enough space between the candle and the cubes so the sugar wouldn't melt. I used a mixture of red and white tealight candles.
  • To add even more Canadian charm to the igloos, look through your kid's trinkets or your Christmas decorations for some cute polar bears, penguins or some fake snow to set the scene.
  • For the inuksuks, I just stacked a few sugar cubes on top of one another in statue-like poses. You could even make some edible candy inuksuks to go along with your igloo.
  • Of course, every igloo needs a Canadian flag. Poke a flag food pick into the top of the styrofoam ball between one of the spaces of the sugar cubes. I also added a small Canadian pin to the front door for a welcoming touch.

How To Build A Sugar Cube Igloo
How To Build A Sugar Cube Igloo | Source

Have You Always Wanted to Learn How to Build a Real Igloo Snow Shelter?

Watch A Clip Of "How to Make a Perfect Igloo" By Ray Mears On World of Survival - BBC

© 2013 Corrinna Johnson

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What Do YOU Think? Do Canadians Sleep In Snow Houses? 20 comments

Shoputopian profile image

Shoputopian 3 years ago from Lower Mainland of BC

This was amazing maybe it's because I also am from BC and could be a little bias. I totally enjoyed reading and watching as you created an igloo and the addition of the Canadian flag was priceless.


Corrinna-Johnson profile image

Corrinna-Johnson 3 years ago from BC, Canada Author

@Shoputopian: Thanks so much. Its always nice meeting other Canadians on Squidoo and especially ones so close to home!


Gypzeerose profile image

Gypzeerose 3 years ago

I lived in Alberta for 8 years so I know a bit about cold. My next door neighbor carved one of these igloos out of snow for his kid. It was so cold, but it was gorgeous.


Scarlettohairy profile image

Scarlettohairy 3 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

I'd never even seen a Canadian sugar cube igloo before. This is cute and sweet!


SheilaMilne profile image

SheilaMilne 3 years ago from Kent, UK

I've never even thought of building an igloo with sugar cubes or snow!. I would probably use royal icing as glue, as you suggest, so that the end result could be edible.


audrey07 profile image

audrey07 3 years ago

This is interesting. Love the concept although I'm not a crafty person myself.


anonymous 3 years ago

I have tried building an igloo before and its harder than it looks because the snow has to be just right to make blocks and we didn't really have that....we'd end up with a circle but never got the top right, but we had fun. Speaking of some sweet fun, you sure have that here with your igloos and fire ring, cuteness and great DIY instructions, a great project for kids! :) Congratulations on your purple star and Imminent feature...you handled it with creativity!


mrdata profile image

mrdata 3 years ago

Lovely concept here! Thanks for your sharing!


TheEnglishHouse profile image

TheEnglishHouse 3 years ago

Nice lens! Thank you.


Diana Wenzel profile image

Diana Wenzel 2 years ago from Colorado

I loved this craft. Would enjoy making a real igloo, too. Excellent tutorial and pics. Thx!


smine27 profile image

smine27 2 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

Ohhh, that's really cool. What a great way to use sugar cubes!


shellys-space profile image

shellys-space 2 years ago from Midwest U.S.A.

These sugar cube Igloos are so adorable! I will have to remember your craft page for Christmas craft ideas.


SheGetsCreative profile image

SheGetsCreative 2 years ago from Seattle, WA

Very clever! Pinning to my craft board


Corrinna-Johnson profile image

Corrinna-Johnson 2 years ago from BC, Canada Author

Thank you @SheGetsCreative! Very much appreciated :)


georgescifo profile image

georgescifo 2 years ago from India

really amazing piece of creativity and loved the way you made these Igloos...keep up the good work..


Hezekiah profile image

Hezekiah 2 years ago from Japan

Cool Hub, something to make with my daughter on our time togethera alone.


Sylvestermouse profile image

Sylvestermouse 2 years ago from United States

Beautiful! What a really neat craft and great instructions! Very clever indeed.


Corrinna-Johnson profile image

Corrinna-Johnson 2 years ago from BC, Canada Author

Thank you @georgescifo! They were a lot of fun to make.


Corrinna-Johnson profile image

Corrinna-Johnson 2 years ago from BC, Canada Author

Thank you @Hezekiah! It is a wonderful project to do with kids.


Corrinna-Johnson profile image

Corrinna-Johnson 2 years ago from BC, Canada Author

Thank you @Sylvestermouse! We had a lot of fun designing and building the igloos :)

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