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Make a pine chess board

This weekend at the DIY Divas Painting Techniques workshop the Divas made a chess board using laminated pine. The blocks were stained using Woodoc gel stain and the entire board wiped down with liming wax.


Even if you don't play chess you can use this as a serving board for drinks and snacks!


1 of 305 x 380mm piece of laminated pine

Wide masking tape

Craft knife

Steel ruler


Woodoc gel stain in your choice of colour

Liming wax


Disposable gloves

Buy all the supplies that you need for this project at your local Builders.


Before you start use 240-grit sandpaper to smooth the board.

1. Use wide masking tape to cover the entire board. Overlap the rows of tape by about 4 to 5mm.

You will now use a steel ruler and pencil to mark off the lines for the chess board.

Here are the measurements for marking out the chess board:

A. Measure in 70mm from both sides

B. Measure down 33mm from top edge

C. Measure up 32mm from bottom edge

This is the frame for your chess board

D. Work from left to right starting at the 70mm line and vertical draw lines at 100, 130, 160, 190, 220, 250, 280mm. 

E. Work from top to bottom starting at the 33mm line and draw horizontal lines at 63, 93, 123, 153, 183, 213, 243, 273mm.

Make both the vertical and horizontal lines longer and wider than the size of the frame to allow for adding a 5mm border all the way around the outside of the frame.

2. Draw a 5mm border around the outside of the chess board frame.

3. Using the diagram above, mark alternating blocks with an 'X'.

4. Use a steel ruler and craft knife to score the lines along the border and chess frame.

5. Using the tip of the craft knife remove all the blocks marked with an 'X'.

6. Rub your hand over the taped areas on the board to make sure the tape is firmly pressed down onto the surface.

7. Pop on a pair of disposable gloves and use a cloth to apply Woodoc gel stain in your choice of colour over the areas where you removed the blocks.

8. Continue to apply gel stain until the entire board is covered. 

9. Wait for about 10 minutes and then carefully peel off the remaining masking tape.


  • Cover the entire board with a thin layer of liming wax.
  • For the handles you can use an old leather belt and two pieces of pine dowel, or you can add your choice of handles.


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