Inside the workshop: The making of an upcycled walnut serving board
Step into our workshop, where our skilled team crafts high-quality picture frames and delivers outstanding customer service. But for us, excellence goes beyond just products and services — it’s about being mindful of the materials we use.
At SohoFrames we like to encourage a more thoughtful use of resources and breathe new life to old or “waste” materials. In this article we demonstrate how we used a pile of off-cuts from a framing job that would have normally been thrown away and turned them into a beautiful walnut serving board, designed by our colleague Alex Vintilescu. Here’s how we did it.
1. Selecting scrap wood
Firstly, we sorted through our pile of walnut pieces, making sure they were free of defects and imperfections and not too short for our intended use.
2. 3D visualisation
Next, we created a 3D visualisation of the board using computer-aided design (CAD) software. This allowed us to see the initial design in detail from all angles, make the necessary adjustments, and ensure the final product would be just as we envisioned it.
3. Glue together
With the carefully selected and prepared walnut pieces in hand, the next step was to bond them together to form a single board using wood glue and clamps.
4. CNC milling
Then, we moved on to the milling process. Here, the CNC machine carves the grooved pattern into the surfacer and then cuts the board out from the blank.
The next step is to sand the tabs off and make sure the entire milled piece, every edge as well as the front and back, is smooth. Food-safe lemon oil was applied to seal the wood, enhance the walnut wood’s rich colour and grain and provide protection against moisture and wear. The oil can be re-applied throughout the use of the board to keep it in good condition.
And there you have it, one possibility of making something new and beautiful from material that was headed for the bin.
At SohoFrames, our mission is clear: to support sustainable craftsmanship and creative resourcefulness. We hope this story encourages you to look at “scrap” in a different way. We can also turn old doors, bits of off-cut flooring, even pallets into picture frames.
Keep an eye out for more articles on this topic as we share our experiences in sustainable framing and creative resource use. If you have any questions or want to discuss recycling and upcycling, feel free to reach out to us. We’d love to hear from you.