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A French-Inspired Garden and Home by Judith Stringham

Garden Shed Budget Wood Butcher Block Counter

Thursday, May 17, 2018



Countertops Part 3 | Garden Shed 

Butcher Block 

The third in a series of three posts about budget wise countertops. 


Garden sheds are buildings made from dreams, after building the main house. Years of sketching diagrams on long winter nights, of saving reclaimed materials, and of collecting photos stuffed into shoeboxes and garden shed Pinterest boards keep the dream alive. 

Most often a garden shed is built with an even tighter budget than your home. Salvaged windows, doors, sinks, faucets, and counters along with DIY homeowners play major roles in making a garden shed affordable for most of us. 

The le jardin château (garden castle) in my backyard fits that description almost to a T. 


Budget Wood Butcher Block Counter In Backyard Garden Shed


Choosing an affordable countertop for the garden shed was a must. 


Neither budget-wise laminated countertops nor cultured marble countertops were good options because of how I planned to use the counter in the garden shed ... potting plants on it, dragging heavy clay pots across it, splashing water on it ... 

Not to mention dirt, fertilizer, and gardening tools, all giving the counter a beating. 



Budget Wood Butcher Block Counter From IKEA  In Backyard Garden Shed
We considered building one from reclaimed wood until I discovered butcher block countertops from IKEA. 




Budget Wood Butcher Block Counter From IKEA  In Backyard Garden Shed
This countertop was bought about 9 years ago and installed about 7 years ago. When we bought the butcher block countertops, the countertops were in stock at the IKEA store and came in 6' and 8' lengths. 



Budget Wood Butcher Block Counter From IKEA  In Backyard Garden Shed
We had to join two lengths together since our counter was longer than 8'. To make the counter as strong as possible, we joined the two lengths together on top of the set of wooden drawers. You can see the joint in the photo. 



Budget Wood Butcher Block Counter From IKEA  In Backyard Garden Shed
What makes these butcher block countertops "budget" counters? 
  • They came from IKEA, recognized for their great prices. Similar butcher block counters from other local improvement stores were higher priced. 
  • There were two thicknesses, 1⅛" and 1½", from which to choose. We chose the 1⅛" which cost less than than 1½". 
  • Buying an in-store option was less also because the counters were pre-set lengths. Custom-made butcher block countertops were an option for ordering, but cost more to get the custom exact length we needed than buying two pre-set lengths and joining them together. 



Budget Wood Butcher Block Counter From IKEA  In Backyard Garden Shed
When the counter was first installed, I had to rub it down with wood mineral oil, allow the oil to soak in for a few days, and repeat the process two more times. Now I apply mineral oil periodically to maintain the top. 



 Budget Wood Butcher Block Counter From IKEA  In Backyard Garden Shed
How has the butcher block wood held up after about 7 years of use? I think it has held up very well. There are a couple of water spots visible in this photo, but once I apply more mineral oil, the spots will blend in with the wood. 



French Country Christmas Event In Backyard Garden Shed
However, immediately after completion the little garden shed turned into a French Country Christmas Event site instead of a true shed for gardening. The butcher block counter became a store counter instead of a garden shed counter. 

Who knew it was destined to be a Christmas shop instead of a garden shed all those years of dreaming, collecting, and planning? 



Budget IKEA Butcher Block Countertop In Backyard Garden Shed
During the summer there is a little potting, but not much in order to keep the shed in good shape for the seasonal Christmas sale. 

Some Christmas things stay in place all year, and new DIY projects and shipments begin appearing months before Christmas. The first shipment is scheduled to arrive the last week of May. 



Budget IKEA Butcher Block Countertop In Backyard Garden Shed
Therefore, the budget countertop has not had a real test to know how it fares with potting, fertilizer, clay pots, gardening tools, and water splashing all over the place. 

One day the little ugly duckling turned white swan will be the happy garden shed of my dreams instead of a French Country Christmas shop never dreamed about until a trip to France one fall.  

Just a reminder that our future may be bigger than our dreams.  

Keep dreaming, but always remember to be open to a slight shift.  

~~~~❦~~~~

NOTE: A quick search of the IKEA online site does not list my countertop, but something similar to mine. 



3 comments:

FlowerLady Lorraine said...


How sweet your shed is and what you wrote at the end of your post was great.

** Just a reminder that our future may be bigger than our dreams.

Keep dreaming, but always remember to be open to a slight shift.**

A wonderful bit of inspiration for me to read this morning.

How sweet it is to have your very own Christmas Shop that others can visit and buy lovely bits and bobs for gifts and/or the holiday season. When you retire it will turn into your lovely garden shed to putter around in.

Thank you for sharing ~ FlowerLady

Ricki Treleaven said...

I love your little shed, and the countertops look great! I love butcher block, and I would LOVE to shop at your little Christmas shop!

Dana Bishop said...

Butcher block was a perfect choice for the shed/shop. Because your lovely cabinets are painted, you had many more countertop style choices. I have hickory cabinets everywhere so butcher block is not a candidate. I love the wood tones in the shop. They are warm but neutral and so they don’t compete with your displays.