[Maintaining Tray with Walnut Oil]

Watanabe Mokkogei's Chabon, which we use with great care, is a tea tray made of carefully selected zelkova from the Hokuriku region, finished without painting or coloring and polished only by hand, a gem of white wood beauty.

We accidentally put a hot iron teapot on our favorite tea tray last day, and it got a black scorch-like pattern on it. We felt uncomfortable leaving it as it was, so we took on the challenge of self-maintenance of white wood products, something we've always wanted to do.

First, we sanded the burnt area and surrounding area with coarse sandpaper to remove the burnt part, and then smoothed the surface as much as possible with fine sandpaper. The next step was to apply vegetable oil to the surface, and we found a way to maintain it using the oil from crushed walnuts, so we decided to give it a try. Oils are classified into three types: non-drying, semi-drying, and drying oils. Olive oil and rapeseed oil are non-drying oils that do not solidify in a sticky state. On the contrary, drying oil is a type of oil that hardens like a resin in the air and protects the surface, and walnut oil falls into this category. By the way, it is best to use walnuts that have not been processed with flavor or oil.

Walnuts wrapped in unbleached cotton cloth are pounded with ground wood to release the oil, and then carefully rubbed into the surface of the tray, which changes to a deep color from where the oil has soaked in. After applying it thoroughly and letting it dry for a while, the greasiness on the surface was almost gone. When we saw the shiny orange tray, we were so happy that we forgot all about the scorch marks.

Plain wood products can be cared for by you, and you can enjoy growing them into your own unique wood. Rubbing the oil in single-mindedly, we feel like we're getting calmer. Maintenance of the tree may also lead to maintenance of the mind.

Watanabe Mokkogei's Chabon S
Kiya's Unbleached Cotton Cloth