Maple Salt Cellar


After my first attempt at making a salt cellar / vessel for Design*Sponge, I figured I wanted to try some more styles. The first one was going to be a gift for my Mom, but after finishing it, I realized it was too modern for her home aesthetic. So, I gave her the walnut one as a ‘placeholder’ gift and said I’d be making her one that better suited her place. I ventured out to the amazing Goby Walnut in search of some boards, and came across a couple maple boards that I couldn’t live without.

Working with maple, I found it to be a little more tricky than walnut. Both are hardwoods, but maple seems REALLY hard. And with the figure in the grain, it was even more challenging. Sanding went well, but turning the cellar on the lathe was interesting. True, you’re not supposed to be really turning wood in that direction of the grain, and it definitely left some tear-out… but I just kept sanding and sanding. Eventually I removed most of the tear-out and got the wood to a smooth point.

After forming, I used OSMO again and I love that stuff more each time. This time I used matte clear Polyx-Oil. If you want to review the instructions, you can check out my walnut cellar post.

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12 Responses to “Maple Salt Cellar”

  1. tams says:

    absolutely beautiful. what an amazing gift to give your mother!

  2. Heather Lea says:

    perfect, as always! That’s one lucky mom.

  3. Sally says:

    Just beautiful!

  4. Ken B says:

    Personally I like the maple over the walnut and love that rough edge. Nicely done there Matt.

  5. Shannon says:

    Such a beautiful project- love the live edge and figured grain. Will have to visit Goby soon!

  6. pergolina says:

    that is just delicious

  7. Harold says:

    How did you attach the piece of wood to the lathe, a face plate?

    • MMP says:

      Exactly. I used a small faceplate on the underside and just filled the screw holes afterwards. Since it was on the bottom, it’s hardly noticeable.

  8. MatK says:

    You should consider using a gooseneck scraper to smooth the cellar. It would save some time, and produce a nicer and more even surface. Especially with tricky wood like that curly maple.