fWondering why we chose to shape our cutting board like Washington State (aside from the fact that we love it here!)? Funnily enough, it all started in Germany. Christopher Coltzau , a woodcut print artist, is collecting cutting boards from around the world to create an art installation. Christopher emailed us and asked us to contribute, so Dan at Dunn Lumber designed this cutting board for the installation—and now you can make one too!

how to make a wood cutting board

Dan brought several Festools that streamlined the process. If you like any of these Festools you can find them at Dunn Lumber. They are helpful but not necessary. Additionally, Dan made his own wood blanks with 6 -3/4” thick x 3” wide x 20” long Alder boards edge glued together to create 18” x 20” blank. You can also use other hardwood species like Maple, Oak, and Walnut.

Step 1

Begin by choosing a shape for your cutting board. Since this is going to Germany we chose to create a silhouette of Washington State. Trace the desired shape on a piece of paper and cut it out.

Step 2

Next, use a pencil to trace your shape onto the laminated hardwood blank. It's important to use a laminated blank to prevent the cutting board from bending as you use it.

wood cutting board plan

Step 3

Then, use two clamps to secure the wood to a firm surface. We are using a HEPA Festool multifunction basic table. It allows us to clamp the wood at almost any angle with very little effort. It's not necessary but it's helpful.

Step 4

Safety first! Put on your safety glasses! Now you can use the jigsaw to cut your shape. You'll need to unclamp and reposition the wood during the process.

diy wood cutting board

sawing wood cutting board

Step 5

After, and only after, you've finished cutting remove your safety glasses and start sanding. We have a sander but sandpaper will work as well it just takes a little bit more time. Sand the edges and both surfaces.

sanding wood cutting board

Step 6

Finish the piece with Daly's "Kitchen Wood Treatment." This will allow you to use the board for food prep. Cover the entire board with treatment and let it sit for several minutes. Then wipe off any residue.

staining wood cutting board

wood cutting board stain

A few notes on cutting board care: Use this board for non-meat products exclusively. Bacteria can get caught in the wood and grow, so avoid cutting meat on this surface. Wash with soap and water. Don't put in the dishwasher.