Kitchen Island with Butcher Block Top... Finally!

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Project by Brianthesawdustmaker posted 35 days ago 1062 views 4 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I have been working for the past several months on a kitchen island. We have a limited amount of kitchen countertop space so this project will really help with that problem. Motivated by some of the elaborate cutting boards I’ve seen on this site, I wanted to make the top something ‘interesting’ and also utilize a couple of species of wood in doing so. I drew up the pattern and chose walnut and hard maple as good contrasting woods which are cutting board friendly. After pieceing together the top, I have a lot of respect for all you cutting board makers. To get it flat and everything fitting snugly takes quite a bit of work. I did quite a bit of sanding to smooth out the imperfections. Time to get a planer, I guess.

The base is red oak. The drawers are solid wood with machined dovetail joints (PorterCable dovetail jig). I have always used wood guides for the drawers in my projects. On this project, those guides also serve as support for the cutting board hidden underneath the top. This board can be pulled out either side and goes the full length of the project. The base was put together with Kreg’s pocket screws and the back/sides are 1/4” oak plywood. Doors are solid wood.

I finished the cabinet portion of the project using Minwax stain-a 50:50 mixture of 210b and 211 (Golden Oak and Provincial). I have used this on other furniture and really like the darker hue versus Golden Oak by itself. Oil based polyurethane (2 coats and 3 in a couple places) brushed on. Putting on poly is always time consuming, but I did get it all done to my own satisfaction. The top and cutting board were both finished with mineral oil. The castors are screwed directly into the legs.

Thanks for looking!

-- Brian, Omaha, NE... So many projects, so little time!

12 comments so far

View lyden's profile


3 posts in 52 days

#1 posted 35 days ago

Great work!

View Jim Sellers's profile

Jim Sellers

233 posts in 936 days

#2 posted 35 days ago

A functional work of art. Nice looking dovetails and well built. Probably last for generations

-- J.C.Sellers

View lightweightladylefty's profile


2594 posts in 2314 days

#3 posted 35 days ago


That looks extremely well built! The design is very functional and the top is really striking.


-- Jesus is the ONLY reason for ANY season.

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

13309 posts in 939 days

#4 posted 35 days ago

Very nice work. Beautiful top.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it. - It's not ability that we often lack, but the patience to use our ability

View gsimon's profile


468 posts in 715 days

#5 posted 35 days ago

That’s no ordinary cutting board! Looks great and very practical
I like the thin shelf choice as well – maybe reminds me of an antique cabinet choice

-- Greg Simon

View eddie's profile


7031 posts in 1215 days

#6 posted 34 days ago

beautiful build ,that stain mixture addes a good look too

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View Holdem's profile


19 posts in 258 days

#7 posted 34 days ago

This is an amazing piece!

View Mike_from_Buffalo's profile


81 posts in 487 days

#8 posted 34 days ago

This is one of the nicest kitchen islands I have ever seen, great job!

-- Mike from Buffalo "A man spends the first half of his life learning habits that shorten the other half of his life."

View Brianthesawdustmaker's profile


28 posts in 109 days

#9 posted 33 days ago

Thanks for all the encouraging words everyone. I really enjoy the LJ’s community. Great place to see what other folks are up, get advice, and to and expand your horizons. My project list has sure grown after perusing projects here more frequently. A good thing to be sure!

-- Brian, Omaha, NE... So many projects, so little time!

View Knothead62's profile


2345 posts in 1562 days

#10 posted 33 days ago

Brian, that is outstanding. You must have put a lot of time cutting and fitting the top plus the pull-out cutting board. Congrats and thanks for sharing.

View Slavisa Nesic's profile

Slavisa Nesic

7 posts in 33 days

#11 posted 32 days ago

The top especially striking. Real beauty. Thank you for pleasing our eyes with this.

-- This land is not mine, not yours, this land is given to all of us, to come, to meet, and leave with no return.

View Wayno1's profile


10 posts in 24 days

#12 posted 14 days ago

I really like the design. Great concept with beautiful lines

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