How to Make a Rustic Bread Board

Antique bread boards are a popular collectible but they're often expensive. With basic woodworking skills, you can turn a piece of old or reclaimed wood into a great handmade gift for your favorite foodie or hostess.

Rustic Handmade Bread Board

Rustic Handmade Bread Board

Have a baker, chef or hostess on your gift list? Surprise them with this handy bread board that looks just like an expensive antique. Reclaimed lumber and basic woodworking skills are all you need. Make your own with our step-by-step instructions.

Materials Needed:

  • piece of old or reclaimed wood
  • chalk
  • table saw or circular saw
  • jig saw or band saw
  • drill equipped with 3/8" drill bit
  • protective eyewear
  • palm sander
  • medium- and fine-grit sanding discs for sander
  • food-safe beeswax wood finish
  • mineral spirits
  • 2 lint-free cloths

Draw Bread Board Shape

Use chalk to draw desired outline onto wood (Image 1). Since old bread boards have a primitive shape, draw designs freehand without worrying too much about perfect symmetry. Scribble out areas that will be scraps to make sketches clear when cutting (Image 2).

Cut Bread Board Down

While wearing protective eyewear, use a table saw or circular saw to cut along straight chalk marks to cut board down to size.

Cut Rustic Bread Board

Cut Rustic Bread Board

While wearing protective eyewear, use a table saw or circular saw to cut along straight chalk marks to cut board down to size.

Cut Bread Board Shape

Use a jigsaw to cut out chalked shape. Wear eye protection and make sure board is on a stable surface. Tip: If an area is tricky to cut out, try cutting out some scrap wood until the line is easier to access with saw blade.

Cutting Out Rustic Bread Board

Cutting Out Rustic Bread Board

Use a jigsaw to cut out chalked shape. Wear eye protection and make sure board is on a stable surface. Tip: If an area is tricky to cut out, try cutting out some scrap wood until the line is easier to access with saw blade.

Drill Hole (Optional)

Many primitive bread boards have a hole in the handle so they could be hung for easy storage. To recreate this look, use a 3/8" sized drill bit to create a hole in the handle.

Drill Hole for Hanging Bread Board

Drill Hole for Hanging Bread Board

Many primitive bread boards have a hole in the handle so they could be hung for easy storage. To recreate this look, use a 3/8" sized drill bit to create a hole in the handle.

Sand Bread Board

Use medium-grit sandpaper and orbital palm sander to smooth edges, sides and surface of bread board. Once edges are knocked down and surface is no longer rough, use fine-grit sandpaper to finish smoothing. Tip: When working with reclaimed wood, sand enough to smooth the surface to make it useable, but don't sand too much and remove the rustic character of the wood.

Sand Handmade Bread Board

Sand Handmade Bread Board

Use medium-grit sandpaper and orbital palm sander to smooth edges, sides and surface of bread board. Once edges are knocked down and surface is no longer rough, use fine-grit sandpaper to finish smoothing. Tip: When working with reclaimed wood, sand enough to smooth the surface to make it useable, but don't sand too much and remove the rustic character of the wood.

Wax Bread Board

Clean board with cotton cloth and mineral spirits to remove any old residue and dust and allow board to completely dry. With another clean, lint-free cloth, apply food-safe beeswax wood finish to all surfaces of the board, working wax deep into the wood grain (Image 1). Buff wax with cloth until surface feels smooth. Allow wax to dry before using to serve food (Image 2).

Next Up

How to Make a Wood Cutting Board

Woodworking projects can be intimidating, but this project is actually easier than you may think. With basic shop materials and dense hardwood, which is the best wood for cutting boards, you'll be able to create a chef-worthy chopping accessory that any foodie would love.

How to Make a Modern Tablet or Cookbook Stand

This handy wooden stand is a great beginner woodworking project for anyone wanting to surprise their favorite chef, baker, techie or hostess with a beautiful and functional custom handmade gift.

How to Make No-Knit Christmas Sweater Stockings

Don't toss that old sweater. Instead, repurpose it as custom stockings for the entire family. This project requires no sewing machine or knitting needles and can easily be completed in an afternoon.

Recycled Sweater Scarf

Create a knit-style scarf without actually knitting by cleverly repurposing sweaters.

How to Make a Monogrammed Tray

Instead of the customary bottle of wine, give your favorite party host or hostess a monogrammed serving tray that can be used throughout the year.

Seed-Starting Kit

The gift that keeps giving — our seed-starter kit is a thoughtful handmade gift for the green thumbs on your list.

Coffee Sack Gift Tote

Repurpose burlap coffee bags to create rustic gift totes that can be used again and again.

Handmade Gift Idea: Make a Classic Tic-Tac-Toe Board

With family gathered for holiday festivities, it's the perfect time to pull out board games. This homemade wood tic-tac-toe set is fun for all ages and makes a thoughtful handmade gift.

How-to: Vintage Stamp Coasters

The DIY experts at HGTV Magazine recreated this flea market find. Here’s how you can, too.

Homemade S'mores Kit

Create fun s'mores kits with made-from-scratch ingredients as a tasty handmade gift for friends and family.

Go Shopping

Refresh your home with stylish products handpicked by HGTV editors.

Watch Live TV

Don't miss your favorite shows. Live stream HGTV now.

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.