I start with local hardwoods that have been sustainably harvested from around the Champlain Valley, on both the Vermont and New York sides of the lake. This broad and scenic area features some of the most beautiful landscapes in the country, flush with its numerous mountains, streams, lakes, meadows, and expansive forests. Many of the locals feel that it is the area's fresh air, clean water, and the mountain and valley settings that give the trees such unique spirit and unabashed character. This combination of natural influences provides for some amazing lumber from which to work.

Once the trees have been logged they are trucked to a local lumber mill which has been a family run operation for better than a century. I search through their racks and bundles of kiln dried lumber for the most interesting pieces with regards to their unique figure and grain patterns. This character wood, with its quirky nature, provides boards which have incredible natural coloring and interesting textured patterns. Due to its limited availability this type of stock is more difficult to come by and pricier than the mill's regular stock. It is also more challenging to work with than its straight grained counterparts, but it helps to produce exceptional and one of a kind works of art.

When designing and crafting the boards I adhere to the concepts of simplicity, function and aesthetics. I work with each piece until there is nothing left to take away. I believe that if a design is right then the aesthetics will be there. The results are boards with fine lines and ones which have calm and peaceful presences, yet boards which will provide years of service with minimal care.

I work mainly with hardwood varieties of maple, birch, and cherry while occasionally using oak, ash and hickory lumber in my small one person shop. All of these hardwoods are known for their stability as they resist swelling, splitting, cracking, and warping due to the stresses of temperature and humidity. They are also easier on your kitchen knives than boards made from synthetic materials.

All of my serving and cutting boards are made from solid stock as opposed to being constructed from strips of different woods that have been laminated together. This helps to assure that the wood tones and figuring are consistent throughout each piece. I feel that this is an obvious choice, not just for aesthetic reasons, but because each piece will tend to wear more slowly and evenly.

Once the boards have been shaped a considerable amount of attention is given to the sanding phase. After they have been adequately smoothed they are then ready for finishing where several hand rubbed coats of mineral oil and bees wax are applied. These coatings provide for food safe surfaces yet ones which are silky smooth and feel good to the touch. Each finished piece is intended to be both elegant and appealing.

If you are interested in purchasing a board please let me know what you have in mind. My serving and cutting boards fall into two main categories, those with and those without thumb holes, and are available in multiple sizes. The boards without thumb holes range in price from $25 to $60 and those with thumb holes from $75 to $105. I will provide free USPS 2-3 day shipping on all orders of $60 or more that can be delivered in the Continental US. Although I tend to focus on working with figured woods I do work with some straight grained woods as well.

The boards with thumb holes are 3/4" thick and come in five main sizes: 14 1/4" by 8 5/8", 18" by 9 7/8", 18 1/2" by 8", 18 1/2" by 9", and 21" by 5 3/4". Each size has a unique shape. The boards without thumb holes are more varied and range in thickness from 3/4" to 1 3/4" and in size from 12" by 5" to 21" by 9". Sometimes there will be slight variations in sizes due to the stock that I work with as nature prefers to be irregular and random. If you provide me with your email address I will gladly send you images of possible boards that fit your request along with their specifications and prices.

From time to time I set aside some choice pieces of lumber for special projects. I use these to fill orders for folks who are looking for a distinct gift for family members or close friends. Throughout the ages trees and wood have come to symbolize relationships that continue to grow and become more solid and lasting over time, and these boards are perfect for representing and celebrating these special connections. From each piece of select lumber I am usually able to craft between two to six boards, and in some instances even a couple more. Coming from the same piece of stock will assure that each board will have similar color and grain patterns with all the others, yet ones which will still be unique in their own way. It is amazing the personal and uniting bond that can be generated when everyone realizes that each of their gifts came from the same natural source. Truly, gifts that will be deeply appreciated.

So, please contact me with your inquiries. I can be reached at info@jeromemilks.com or by calling 802-545-2030.