Cheap Kitchen Island Gets a Classy Upgrade

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Project by wunderaa posted 572 days ago 1589 views 3 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

So the story here is that my brother has this kitchen island that I’m pretty sure was purchased from Walmart about a year or two ago. The last time I was at his house, I noted that the top had started to split because it was made so poorly. When he wasn’t around, I took measurements of the top and the flip up side extension and went about making a much much nicer replacement. My brother was quite surprised by the delivery and subsequent installation!

The main top is made from laminated strips of maple, African mahogany, pecan, and Honduran mahogany.

The flip up cutting board was made from bloodwood, African mahogany, maple, and purple heart. For the cutting board, I started with random lengths and widths of boards and cut blocks that were about 1.5” in thickness. I laid them out in the pattern shown in the picture so that the board was striped with end-grain up. A quick sanding on a reference-flat surface ensured that each piece would sit flush with its neighbors. After a glue-up, I ripped that long-ways and flipped the pieces to get the final pattern. I cut a hole in the unit so that a trash can under the board can catch the scraps.

Both are finished in beeswax and mineral oil.

Main top: 1.5×20x28”
Cutting board: 1.5×20x13”

15 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile (online now)


111999 posts in 2162 days

#1 posted 572 days ago

That is totally the coolest fantastic build.

-- Custom furniture

View jaykaypur's profile


3224 posts in 993 days

#2 posted 572 days ago

That is a beautiful re-build and what a great brother he has in you. Very nice job and the cutting board is beautiful!

-- Use it up, Wear it out --------------- Make it do, Or do without!

View Roger Gaborski's profile

Roger Gaborski

144 posts in 2333 days

#3 posted 572 days ago

Very nicely done.

-- Roger Gaborski,

View Lyn's profile


245 posts in 1213 days

#4 posted 572 days ago


View prattman's profile


440 posts in 702 days

#5 posted 572 days ago

I like it a lot

-- Everyone calls me Ed or Eddie , mom still calls me Edward if she is mad at me.

View Dusty56's profile


11638 posts in 2273 days

#6 posted 572 days ago

The flip up board is so cool !

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View Hamlinwoodshop's profile


46 posts in 597 days

#7 posted 571 days ago

Wow. Nice job….

-- Terry, Hamlin, NY,

View eddie's profile


6852 posts in 1198 days

#8 posted 571 days ago

that is just too cool ,a great design love the swing up ,just get me to thinking of a friend that needs one ,thank you for sharing

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 1822 days

#9 posted 571 days ago

That’s a beautiful kitchen island top. I’m impressed!

-- Hal, Tennessee

View Tokolosi's profile


650 posts in 940 days

#10 posted 571 days ago

That is absolutely stunning!

-- “There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something. You certainly usually find something, if you look, but it is not always quite the something you were after.” ~ JRR Tolkien

View Surfside's profile


3016 posts in 758 days

#11 posted 571 days ago

That is totally elegant ..

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

View Mip's profile


300 posts in 663 days

#12 posted 571 days ago

One nice job. I hope you kept the top from the old cabinet, the picture looks like some decent wood, but shows the lousy workmanship of the old top. The new top is unbelievably better.

View DavidIN's profile


73 posts in 573 days

#13 posted 570 days ago

Too cool with the access hole to go right in the garbage. Great work!

View wunderaa's profile


178 posts in 787 days

#14 posted 570 days ago

Thanks for all of the nice comments, everyone! This was a fun build and even more fun to give it away to a loved one who will use and appreciate it!

View majuvla's profile


3153 posts in 1452 days

#15 posted 569 days ago

It’s realy classy.Amaizing top.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

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