How To Give A Kitchen Knife Block Farmhouse Style

Do you have a kitchen knife block that has seen it's better days?  This is one of those projects that kept getting put on the back burner. I don't know what took me so long because the most time-consuming part of this makeover is waiting for the glue to dry. My Henckel knife block looks like new again...but better!

Farmhouse Knife Block Makeover

Kitchen Knife Block Makeover

Even if your wood knife block is newer, why not give it a one-of-a-kind makeover customized to match your kitchen?

I've had this butcher knife block for decades and it definitely showed. It may have been a wedding gift back in 1987, that's how old it is. Sure I could just spend a few bucks and replace it but I'd much rather breathe new life into it rather than have it end up in the landfill.

Butcher Knife Block Before Makeover

With just a little TLC not only does the knife block look like new again but it has farmhouse-style that looks so pretty in my kitchen.

Butcher Knife Block Makeover

What a difference a little paint and a wood applique made to spruce it up. The possibilities for color choices are endless as well as what style of wood applique you use. I had this fleur-de-lis one in my stash for years just waiting for the right project. The size was perfect for covering up all the worn parts of the wood and the logo.

Henckels Knife Block Makeover

Plus the color and Parisian style matches the painted terracotta pot utensil holder on the tray beside it.

I'm laughing at the photo below because I forgot to remove my MacGyver'd attempt at a window opener tool! 😂  We have a bay window in our kitchen and I can't reach the handle to crank open the window so I use the hole in the dough spatula (I think that's what it is) and it works like a charm!

Upcycled Kitchen Knife Block

How To Upcycle A Kitchen Knife Block In Five Easy Steps

Let's get into the nitty-gritty of how to give a knife block an easy peasy makeover.

This post contains affiliate links so you can see what products I used or recommend for this project. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you.

Step 1 - Prep For Paint

Most knife blocks have a shiny finish or if yours is old like mine, it'll probably have a lot of wear around the knife slots. Give it a light sanding with a sheet of 150 grit sandpaper to smooth out the scratches and remove the shiny finish.

Step 2 - Embellish With Wood Applique

Initially, before deciding to decorate the knife block with an applique I covered the Henckels logo with wood filler. That is an option if you don't want to embellish the front of your knife block.

Otherwise, skip filling the logo and attach a wood applique on the front with wood glue instead.

Wood Knife Block Makeover

Step 3 - Paint To Match Kitchen Decor

Paint the knife block in the color of your choice to match your kitchen decor. I painted mine with Behr Chalk Decorative Paint in the color Granny Smith Apple that I had on hand. The nice thing about this chalky paint is that it can be mixed in hundreds of different color choices.

Step 4 - Protect The Paint Finish

Once the paint is completely dry protect the paint with a clear finish. I used my go-to water repellant Dixie Belle Paint Company Gator Hide clear coat that dries rock hard and will retain the finish.

You can skip the next step if you don't want your knife block to have a time-worn finish that gives it farmhouse style. You can see the difference between just the clear coat on the left and the dark wax on the right.

Custom Knife Block Upcycle

Step 5 - Farmhouse Time-Worn Finish

Brush dark wax all over the knife block, especially in the recesses of the wood applique, and remove the excess wax with a lint-free rag.

Apply more dark wax in a pouncing motion by twisting your wrist from side-to-side along the edges of the knife block. Instead of removing the wax this time, let it cure for a few days. When it no longer feels tacky you're ready to use your one-of-a-kind custom knife block again.

Farmhouse Knife Block Makeover

What a difference a little paint made to customize my beat-up knife block. I like it much better than had I simply replaced it with a new kitchen knife block.

Upcycled Henckel Knife Block Before and After

If you have any questions about this knife block makeover, please leave them in the comment section below or the Contact Me tab at the top. I love hearing from you!

If you enjoyed this Henckels Knife Block Makeover,  I'd be so thankful if you shared it with a friend and pinned it to your Upcycled Home Decor or Farmhouse Style board on Pinterest.

Kitchen Butcher Knife Block Makeover

I share my projects at these inspiring link parties.



  1. What a great idea. The knife holder looks so pretty now.

  2. The picture is absolutely a beautiful scene. I do have a knife block that is probably 40+ years old that I haven't used in about 20 years so I guess it's time to give a redo and use it too. I'm more coastal but I love the color you chose. Mine will be turquoise or Coral I think.

    1. So glad to hear my knife block inspired you to give yours a redo. Turquoise or coral sounds very pretty. Have fun painting!

  3. Marie, you have a customized knife block ! The distressed look and the wood applique did the trick. It looks WOW !!!! I will be featuring your knife block transformation in the next Meraki Link Party.

    1. Woot woot, you made my Monday morning, Naush! I'm glad you like my upcycled knife block idea.

  4. Oooooooooo, I really like this idea Marie. We have two knife blocks and one of them looks almost exactly like yours except for the logo thingy on the front. I'm going to have to keep my eye out for a pretty applique to add.

    1. Yay, glad you found inspiration for your knife blocks, Michelle!

  5. You are brilliant! I have that exact knife block and it gets on my nerves! We use it everyday, but I feel like it is an eyesore! This is the perfect solution! If you have time I would love if you would join us at Embracing Home and Family link party!

    1. So glad you found inspiration to beautify your knife block, Jenn! Thanks for the party invitation too, heading there next.

  6. Knife blocks are usually so ugly, but this makeover makes it really cute. What a great idea and thank you so much for sharing this post with us on the Embracing Home and Family Link-up party. We hope you join us again this Friday!



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