Canadian Woodworking

Spice rack

Author: Michel Theriault
Illustration: Mike Del Rizzo
Published: August September 2006

This simple spice rack keeps your spices close at hand when cooking. You can either hang it from the wall or sit it on the counter, using its optional base.

Conveniently organized spices removes the frustration of rummaging through drawers or cupboards. You’ll also find out how quick and easy it is to spice up your meals.

I made this spice rack from oak. However, you could make it from maple, cherry, walnut or even pine. If your kitchen has natural wood cabinets, you can either make the spice rack to match, or to contrast the existing wood.

Trace pattern

Bandsaw back and side profiles

Glue ledges and faces

Assemble spice rack

  • Cut the base (A), back (B), and sides (C) to size from 3/4″ stock, on your table saw. You will have to glue together two or more boards to make the back the full 10-3/8″ width.
  • Use a template to transfer the end profile to the back and side pieces. Hold the template in position and trace the template with a pencil, making sure the line is dark enough to see when band sawing.
  • Band saw the end profiles by following the line you drew on the end pieces. Stay just outside the line. You can use a jigsaw for this if you prefer.
  • Sand the sawn edges by hand or with a drum sander mounted in a drill press.
  • Set up a table-mounted router with the edge bit, and rout the top edge of the back piece, and the front and top edges of the side pieces. If you are making the spice rack with a base, rout the front and ends of the base as well.
  • Cut the ledge (D) and front face (E) pieces to size. Glue them together in an ‘L’ shape, making sure the edges are flush.
  • Set up the table saw with the blade 1/4″ high and attach a sacrificial piece of wood to the fence. Set the fence so it is flush with the blade and run the bottom edge of the back piece through the blade with a push block, cutting a rabbet. Move the fence back the width of the blade and run it though again. Set the fence slightly over 1/4″ from the opposite face of the blade and run the back piece through one more time to make a 1/4″ x 1/4″ rabbet on the bottom edge.
  • With the same set-up, set fence 5″ from inside face of the blade and run the back piece through with the bottom edge of the back piece against the fence, using a push block. Set the fence 5-1/4″ from the outside face of the blade and run it through again. Adjust the fence to remove any waste. Repeat this process for the last dado at 10″ from the bottom of the back piece.
  • Apply glue to the mating surfaces, and assemble the sides, ledges and back. Clamp tightly until dry. Make sure the front of the ledge is flush with the front of the sides.
  • Sand, starting with #80 grit and finishing with #220 grit. Apply several coats of your favourite finish.
  • Screw the base to the bottom of the spice rack if you are using the base, otherwise simply attach picture mounting hardware to the back of the spice rack and hang it on your wall.

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