March 23, 2022
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While I’d heard of painting, pottery and sign-making workshops, I’d never heard of a build your own charcuterie board class. Knowing my passion for charcuterie, my aunt forwarded me the information about this event. A few weeks later, Elizabeth and I were off to learn how to make a charcuterie board using wood and epoxy.
Midwest Woodturners is a Wisconsin-based company specializing in reclaimed wood products, including live edge tables, bar tops, special order items, and of course, charcuterie boards. They offer pop-up workshops in places like make-your-own-pottery shops, which is where we attended our event.
Choosing the wood
When we first walked in, there were tables full of molds, which included two pieces of wood in a plastic container. The wood was surrounded by spray foam to reduce the amount of epoxy waste. Clamps held a strip of wood with screws attached that held the wood pieces in place by pushing them into the bottom of the container. It was fun to look at the different pieces of wood and choose the pieces for your own board. We kept in mind that the space between the wood would be filled with epoxy. All of the wood was a gorgeous black walnut that our teacher explained was taken from trees that came down in storms or were salvaged in some way.
Choosing the epoxy
Once we chose our wood, it was time to decide which color or colors we wanted to fill the void between the two pieces of wood. We were able to pick one or two colors to fill the space between the wood with color. I chose a water-inspired Aqua and Peacock combination while Elizabeth chose the modern Pewter epoxy.
The Epoxy Pour
Once we chose our colors, the organizer poured the clear epoxy into two plastic cups as well as a scoop of our chosen colored mica powder. We were told that thoroughly mixing the mica and epoxy was critical to a good final product. We stirred the mixture for nearly 10 minutes, making very sure there were no mica clumps.
After the most thorough stir of our lives, it was time to pour the epoxy to make the colored stripe between the wood of our boards.
We were told to pour the epoxy resin ever so slowly to avoid making too many bubbles. We each had two cups of resin and poured both in at the same time at the two ends of the molds. Elizabeth chose just one color, while I chose two colors to create an ombre effect.
Mixing and De-Bubbling
Once the epoxy reached the top of the wood, we stopped pouring. I used a popsicle stick to stir the middle section where the two colors met to mix them together. We were able to set the stirring sticks on top of the wood because after the epoxy dries, .25 inches will be shaved off the top and bottom of the boards.
The final step for us during the workshop was to pop as many tiny bubbles as possible with a little torch. We had to avoid the spray foam as we were warned it's flammable... I was convinced I'd be the one to start a fire, but we all survived.
After the charcuterie board making workshop
While the workshop came to an end, there was still work to do. The organizers bring the boards back to their workshop where they remove the boards from the molds, trim all 4 sides as well as a quarter inch off of the top and bottom. Then they sand the boards, wet them slightly, then sand again for a super smooth finish. We were told to oil the wood occasionally to keep them in tip top shape. Any product you'd use to maintain butcher block would work, but we love the food grade mineral oil from Thirteen Chefs, which you can get on Amazon by clicking here.
Because there was still work to be done after the event, we don't yet have our final boards, but will pick them up next week. Make sure you're following us on social media to see how they turned out.
If you've been wanting to learn how to make a charcuterie board with wood and epoxy, absolutely find a workshop like this for your first attempt. I feel confident I could do it on my own now, but learned so much about the setup, process, and materials by attending. We're looking forward to sharing the final products soon!