Joe's beautiful boards...

12 February 2013, Arts, events and places, Would you like to leave a comment?

I’ve often been asked if I can make a chopping board, or platter for serving cheese. As a wood turner, most of the timber I stock is quite deep in size and not really suitable for this purpose. Generally speaking, thinner planks of timber are what you really need for chopping boards, similar in some respect to that used by a furniture maker. However, there is also something else required – a whole new set of skills brought on by years of being a specialist!

Local designer, Joe Butler, is an expert in this field and has developed his own range of high quality serving boards. Made only from Cumbrian timber, they incorporate many of the features mirrored in my wooden bowls and are hand made from start to finish. They include natural edges, burry grain and knot holes and are available in a variety of different shapes and sizes.


Since they are designed for use with food, particular care has been taken to their finish. Natural defects do look great, but are of little benefit in a chopping board. Because of this, Joe uses a resin filler to block all holes and cracks. This enables the natural imperfections to be visible, but sealed from food and moisture.

Joe hand sands each board until it is silky smooth and incorporates a rather sumptuous round over to the edges. This is to facilitate handling and does look rather nice. The finished piece is then coated with osmo top oil – the best oil available for this purpose.


I will soon have a selection of these boards available for sale on my website, with commissions available on request. However, if you have any questions regarding them, I’m always happy to advise.

Jonathan Leech

Written by Jonathan Leech

Jonathan Leech is a woodturner working and living in Cumbria. He specialises in making bowls, dishes and platters from local sustainably sourced timber. Read more or about Jonathan or see a selection of his work.

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