DIY Wood Countertops With Herringbone Pattern


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February 11, 2020
Zoe Hunt




3+ Days



Interested in how to waterproof your wood countertops? Scroll to the bottom where we answer that question!

This post contains affiliate links for your convenience (which means if you make a purchase after clicking a link, I earn a small commission, but it won’t cost you a penny more)!

DIY waterproof wood vanity top

One of the first design elements that we locked in for our powder room design was a herringbone wood countertop. Recently we made a herringbone tray and a herringbone (well, chevron) coffee table.

We’ve fallen in love with the pattern and the way it emphasizes beautiful wood grains. We also knew that the wood countertop would bring some much-needed warmth to our otherwise black and white powder room.

Alright, let’s start DIYing!

Want to DIY buy don\'t know where to start? Click here to grab your free guide!


What You’ll Need

DIY Wood Countertops with Herringbone Pattern Tutorial

New to DIY? Download our free 5 Steps to Getting Start with DIY guide!

Step 1: cut your plywood to size

Cut your plywood to the size that you would like your countertop to be minus 1/2″ for the length and width. We used our Kreg Circular Saw Track to make sure our lines were straight.

cutting plywood using Kreg Accu-cut and circular saw

Step 2: mark the center

2. Measure and mark the center of your plywood. This will be your guide as you place your herringbone pattern.

Mark the center of the plywood using a pencil

STEP 3: cut your pine boards

Place your pine boards on top of the plywood, lining up the corner seams with the center line you drew in step 2. You will run out of boards and that’s okay. Take a pencil and mark approximately 1-2″ past where the plywood hits on each board.

arranging wood into herringbone pattern

Cut your pine boards at the lines you just drew. This will be a 45-degree angle. You want to leave a little bit of spare pine just in case your pattern gets shifted slightly. You will cut off the extra later.

Place your pine boards on top of the plywood. Make sure to mix up different wood grains as you are positioning them.

Once you have the entire board filled, remove the bottom piece and mark where your boards hit. This will give you a starting point when you put your boards back on the plywood in a minute. Once you have it marked, remove all of the boards. Make sure to move them off in the same order so that you know exactly where each board goes.

wood herringbone countertop in progress

Step 4: glue your pine boards

Add a generous amount of wood glue to your plywood and then quickly position your herringbone pattern. Once you have everything in place, carefully put something heavy on top of the surface while the glue dries.

wood glue on plywood

Step 5: cut the excess

Once the glue dries, it’s time to remove the excess wood from the countertop. Once again, we used our Kreg Circular Saw Track to make sure our lines were as straight as possible.

cut excess wood from countertop using Kreg Accu-cut

Step 6: frame the countertop

Flip your countertop over so that the herringbone pattern is facing down. This will ensure that the frame is in line with the top of the countertop. The bottom will overhang.

Cut your trim boards to fit around your countertop, measuring and cutting one piece at a time. Once you get the right fit, glue and clamp the frame in place.

clamping frame to countertop

Step 7: sand

Once the glue is fully dry, it’s time to sand your boards. We sanded up to 120 with the orbital sander and then finished sanding with a 220 sanding block. At this point, you can spend extra time sanding to make sure the surface is completely smooth. The goal is to be able to close your eyes and run your hand over the countertop and think it is one solid board.

sanding herringbone countertop

Wipe your countertop with a tack cloth to remove any dust from the surface.

Step 8: stain

Stain your countertop and let dry.

stained herringbone wood countertop

Now I know what you’re thinking. Won’t these countertops get wet in the bathroom…?

Free download wood sizing cheatsheet

How to make wood countertops waterproof

It’s time for the final, and possibly most important, step in our DIY wood countertop tutorial. We need to seal the wood so that it can stand up to some water.

After extensive research, we decided to seal our countertops with Waterlox. We need to be patient with this step as it requires multiple coats to get to waterproof status, and you need to wait 24 hours between each coat.

The results are well-worth it though. The wood looks incredible, feels incredible, and has held up great to water so far! We’ll update the blog with a one-year review when the time comes around.

how to build a DIY wood countertop

There you have it! Once you seal your wood countertop and let it cure, you’re good to go.

We would LOVE to see your photos. Send us (or tag us in) a picture of your wood countertop on Instagram or send us an email! And always feel free to reach out with any questions!

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