I highly recommend that if you’re going to attempt to make butcher block… start with something small. And I mean really small. Like make a cutting board. Whatever you do, do not attempt for your first time to make an entire kitchen island top.
But in true Post Grad fashion, I’ve jumped in head first into a project way too big for someone of my level of expertise. I think I realized this around 8pm the other night. Assuming I was close to completion, I snapped this iPhone pic to mark my progress only to whip out my measuring tape and determine I was just over the halfway mark.
So this is going to take awhile, but it’s not like I’ve never said that before!
Anyway, the point of this post is to show you how easy it is to do on your own. Great intro for that right? Theoretically, the process actually is incredibly simple. You glue wood together and clamp it tightly with some super strong industrial bar clamps. Tada! No really. That’s literally all there is to it. So what’s the big hold up? Well here’s what I have to do:
- Pour some glue down one side of the cut board.
- Smooth the glue with a sponge brush.
- Line it up against the rest of the butcher block.
- With one hand holding one end trying to line it up, I use my knee to try and balance the other end of the board so that it doesn’t fall.
- Try with your free hand to get the clamp on the board to tighten it. Drop glue covered board on floor.
- Regret doing this over carpet.
- Repeat starting from step 5, but this time use baby clamp to assist knee in balancing board while trying to use big industrial clamp too heavy for you to hold. Clamp one side.
- While clamping second end, notice first end has started to slide out of alignment.
- Remove both clamps. Start over from step 3 now that most of the glue is on your hands, knee, and the carpet below.
- Once everything is finally lined up and clamped. Go upstairs and get a glass of wine.
OK so besides the fact that I’m a completely ridiculous always-in-over-my-head person, things are actually coming along. I’ve completed 9 rows as of last night and have only 4 more to go to make the whole thing as wide as it needs to be (~ 20″). And in other exciting news, the mister and I brought the island base up last night from the basement. Literally the ONLY piece of furniture we’ve brought up from the basement workshop successfully in one attempt without having to saw it into pieces. Cue slow clap.