Everyone puts furniture on their floor plan, right? When we were designing the house, I knew that I wanted a big, sturdy island in kitchen, so I planned to make sure there was enough room for the thing. It needed to be big enough that you didn’t need to worry about pushing something off the other side (3 x 4′), have a solid top, and be just the right height to knead bread on. Mr. B also wanted something we could use to process an animal on. Some friends recently built an island so close to what I was imagining that I announced my personal plan to build the thing. The thought of me, wood, his tools, and my past wood working projects was enough to get Mr. B on-board, and we turned this project out in about a week (with help from Mr. B’s dad).
We’ve been using a flimsy folding table that you couldn’t get clean, and I was so sick of looking at it. I knew that the island was a good idea though – that little table had already become a center focus of the kitchen. We put groceries on it, drop the mail there, pull things out of the fridge and drop them on it, served drinks and appetizers there. This new island is going to do its job so much better. Mr. B’s brother, Mr. T, helped us move it into place last night and we instantly started using it. The top is maple rubbed with mineral oil, and the base is fir. Ain’t she a beaut?
We need to do something to the top though. I applied the recommended 6 coats of mineral oil, and the wood really did drink it up. But when Mr. B wiped it down with a sponge, a huge rough spot raised on one side. Even letting more oil sit on top overnight didn’t fix it. I know that it is counter, and it is going to get dinged and knife marked and stained, but it is hard to accept that wiping it with a sponge is going to rough up the surface. We’re going to try raising the grain with water, sanding it again, and then applying more oil over several days. Fingers crossed that I can go back to rubbing my face on it by Sunday.