Cheese & Cracker Servers

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Project by Mr M's Woodshop posted 09-11-2014 02:13 PM 1992 views 21 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

It’s our thing.

My wife and I are empty nesters, and it’s very normal for us to reach a Friday night, her not wanting to cook after a stressful week … and dinner becomes cheese & crackers.

She loves using the cheese boards I made her for Christmas (thank goodness) as well as the small wooden bowls for crackers, but she had been after me to make a server that combines the two. So, when Woodsmith published the plans for such a server (issue # 214), I was all over it. A trip to the lumber yard to get some 6/4 cherry, and I was off.

I ended up making 3x with Walnut end grain cutting boards, 2x with Maple end grains, and 1x with Walnut edge grain. The Walnut edge grain is my wife’s favorite; she doesn’t like end grain much for some reason.

The pieces turned out well, in the end, but I didn’t like the design after I had made this group of 6 servers.

The double cove routing on the end is interesting, but then the cutting away of the non-tray and subsequent clean-up of the under curve was my least favorite part of the project. Next time, I’ll do it another way. The inner cove cut for the crackers is fine … but I’ll probably make it a bit larger next time. My favorite crackers (which have a larger diameter than a Ritz cracker) don’t fit well.

I ignored the instructions on how to do the cutting board inserts, and simply made end grain cutting boards the normal way, and cut them to shape.

There’s a “making of” photo essay showing my process, here.

Comments, criticisms & cheap hardwood in Southern California always welcome!

-- Henry Mowry, Santa Clarita, CA,

16 comments so far

View sras's profile (online now)


4365 posts in 2553 days

#1 posted 09-11-2014 02:46 PM

Very nice! I like the inset cutting board.

-- Steve - Impatience is Expensive

View GerardoArg1's profile


936 posts in 1418 days

#2 posted 09-11-2014 04:21 PM

Nice idea. Great job in those. Congratulations

-- Disfruta tu trabajo (enjoy your work) (Bandera, Argentina)

View tt1106's profile


119 posts in 2493 days

#3 posted 09-11-2014 07:35 PM

Really like how you did that. Well done.

-- -Todd

View JimRochester's profile (online now)


370 posts in 1039 days

#4 posted 09-11-2014 08:33 PM

Every year for Christmas I make a project for all the ladies in the family. When I saw this project in wordsmith, I knew it would be a good one. Nice job, thanks for the help

-- Schooled in the advanced art of sawdust and woodchip manufacturing.

View Rick M.'s profile

Rick M.

7735 posts in 1804 days

#5 posted 09-11-2014 09:40 PM

View Mean_Dean's profile


4948 posts in 2571 days

#6 posted 09-12-2014 12:08 AM

Great looking cheese & cracker tray! I’m off to check out your photos!

-- Dean

View hotncold's profile


762 posts in 968 days

#7 posted 09-12-2014 01:08 AM

Very nice Henry! I love projects that can “get done” and “show off”...these qualify. I really like the first pic and I have no intention of showing it to my wife…:)

-- Dennie - Tennessee

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Mr M's Woodshop

392 posts in 2491 days

#8 posted 09-12-2014 03:47 AM

Thanks, everyone. This was an interesting project to build, though I don’t plan on repeating the plan as designed. If I get motivated to tweak the design and make it my own, you’ll be one of the first to know when it shows up here!

-- Henry Mowry, Santa Clarita, CA,

View hoss12992's profile


3814 posts in 1317 days

#9 posted 09-12-2014 06:05 AM

That is really cool and absolutely love it. Great job

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

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Bob Casey

79 posts in 905 days

#10 posted 09-12-2014 10:54 AM

Henry As usual you outdid yourself I have looked at that plan since it came out and after my craft seaon is over this year I will be trying that one Great Job

-- woodnutbob

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8749 posts in 2292 days

#11 posted 09-12-2014 04:48 PM

Nice and elegant tray!

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

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Gene Howe

8111 posts in 2853 days

#12 posted 09-12-2014 04:59 PM

Very nice.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

View WadeHolloway's profile


85 posts in 1518 days

#13 posted 09-13-2014 12:40 PM

For some reason I can not seem to find that on the Woodsmith website. They only go to episode 213 and not 214. I am looking for some Christmas gift ideas and thought that would be a good one. But nice job on yous, looks really good.

View Mr M's Woodshop's profile

Mr M's Woodshop

392 posts in 2491 days

#14 posted 09-13-2014 02:09 PM

Thanks for all of the kind comments.

Wade, this project hasn’t appeared on the TV show, to my knowledge. It was featured in the printed magazine. Old school.

-- Henry Mowry, Santa Clarita, CA,

View JimRochester's profile (online now)


370 posts in 1039 days

#15 posted 09-14-2014 12:21 AM

Since I know I have at least a dozen family members to make these for, I invested in the 2” round nose bit instead of cove cutting. I had also already decided to make the end grain the traditional way instead of piecemeal the way the magazine suggested. Any other suggestions Henry?

-- Schooled in the advanced art of sawdust and woodchip manufacturing.

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