Kitchen island

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Project by Asa Christiana posted 05-25-2012 03:36 PM 3365 views 15 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is a kitchen island I made from butternut, with a soapstone top. Soap stone is amazing stuff…you can rout it with carbide, cut it with a diamond blade, sand it normally and finish it with oil finishes! The carved volutes came from this article:
And the faux pegs came from this one:

By the way, I left the boards rough milled in the bottom shelf area, for a rustic effect. Turned out great.

-- Asa Christiana (editor of Fine Woodworking)

13 comments so far

View ChrisK's profile


1914 posts in 2987 days

#1 posted 05-25-2012 04:00 PM

That is one beautiful piece.

-- Chris K

View BenR's profile


330 posts in 2534 days

#2 posted 05-25-2012 05:36 PM

When I first glanced at the new projects page, I thought “I’ve seen that before”. After I clicked on it, I realized from where. Beautiful piece. Love the carving and the soapstone top. Nice design.

-- Ben in Va

View Richforever's profile


757 posts in 3626 days

#3 posted 05-25-2012 06:21 PM

Nicely done! Love the carving on the volutes. Thanks for posting. I’m having to think through re-doing my kitchen.

-- Rich, Seattle, WA

View a1Jim's profile


116906 posts in 3483 days

#4 posted 05-25-2012 06:44 PM

A very nice Island Asa you do very nice work. Fine Woodworking always has great projects.

-- Custom furniture

View Asa Christiana's profile

Asa Christiana

17 posts in 2106 days

#5 posted 05-25-2012 07:39 PM

Thanks, folks. How cool is it that you can build furniture way nicer than you could afford otherwise? Working on some tansu cabinets right now. Check out this blog:

-- Asa Christiana (editor of Fine Woodworking)

View captferd's profile


169 posts in 2299 days

#6 posted 05-25-2012 08:21 PM

Seen those tops before and wondered what they were. A guy accually worked a scratch out of it. Beautiful Island. Thanks for sharing

-- CaptFerd

View SPHinTampa's profile


567 posts in 3591 days

#7 posted 05-26-2012 12:44 AM

First rate, professional work.

-- Shawn, I ask in order to learn

View GenerationWW's profile


521 posts in 2155 days

#8 posted 05-26-2012 12:47 AM

great work, I like it!

-- list your handcrafted treasures @ for free!

View eddie's profile


8565 posts in 2520 days

#9 posted 05-26-2012 01:27 PM

Asa thats one sweet kitchen the soap stone

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View Hacksaw's profile


185 posts in 3282 days

#10 posted 05-26-2012 02:19 PM

Nice island! What speed do you run the router on the soapstone?

-- Nothing's just gets expensive

View Asa Christiana's profile

Asa Christiana

17 posts in 2106 days

#11 posted 05-27-2012 04:30 PM

Full speed on the router worked just fine, I believe. It’s been a few years now. But it was just a gentle curve, not removing much material. Still, I’m sure I did it in a few passes. Always a good idea, on wood, too, with the last pass being very light for best results.

-- Asa Christiana (editor of Fine Woodworking)

View Chuck's profile


27 posts in 3149 days

#12 posted 06-01-2012 01:37 AM

The island is beautiful – it is one of the few on this site that inspired me. I’m planning a kitchen island for my next build, and your island helped inspire my final design.

-- Chuck, Preston CT,

View Asa Christiana's profile

Asa Christiana

17 posts in 2106 days

#13 posted 06-01-2012 01:35 PM

Thanks, Chuck. One thing about design: spend a lot of time on it, and lots of sketches and adjustments, maybe even do some mockups with foam, or cardboard, or cheap lumber to get your projects just right before setting sail. And then pause mid-project to fine-tune the details you are adding, like I did for the corbels that support the overhang, or the shape of the overhang itself.

That’s a hard lesson I’ve learned over the years. Some of my past design mistakes are still sitting in my house, haunting me. Most have been given away or moved to the basement where I don’t have to look at them!

-- Asa Christiana (editor of Fine Woodworking)

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