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Making a Travertine Salt & Pepper Dish

Home DIY Dec 8, 2022

I’ve got another travertine project for you to try, and this one makes the perfect gift!

If you’ve been following me for a while, then you know I love a good travertine project. I had an idea recently to find ou how many DIY project I could do wth a single piece off travertine, so this is my first in the series! But I wanted to try something new this time and attempt to carve away some of the travertine, and what tool do I turn to for a task like this? My Dremel of course!

You can watch the full video here for making this piece.

About The Dremel

A Dremel is a handheld rotary power tool that has a range of different accessories for undertaking a wide variety of craft, hobby and DIY tasks. In a broad sense, a Dremel can be used for cutting, sanding, engraving, cleaning & polishing and grinding & sharpening (you can find my guide here). The Dremel 8260 also has an amazing app that I used to help me decide on the speed of the tool, based on the materials I was using. It was so helpful!

Materials You’ll Need

Note that you need to spray the stone with water, and you should avoid getting water on the Dremel.

How To Make A Travertine Salt & Pepper Tray

  1. If you’re starting with a full travertine tile, you’ll need to use a hammer to break off a piece, or carefully drop it on the ground.. This can be a little tricky to get the size/shape you want. But I kind of like not knowing exactly what it’ll look like!
  2. Set up your dremel somewhere outside, a place that’s well ventilated and somewhere you don’t mind getting travertine dust.
  3. With a pencil, trace two circles on your travertine piece where you’d like the little ‘bowls’ to go.
  4. Don’t forget to put on your mask, eyewear and gloves, this one gets a little messy and you want to avoid breathing in the dust.
  5. Use your spray bottle to thoroughly wet the stone before you start, as this will reduce the dust. Keep sporadically spraying the stone while you are doing it.
  6. Attach the Diamond Wheel to the end of your Dremel, keep in mind this attachment is actually meant to be used to cut through things vertically but I decided to use it to carve away the travertine on more of a horizontal angle.
  7. Holding the travertine piece with one hand, turn on your dremel and begin to lightly carve away at the travertine. Be sure not to put too much pressure onto the dremel, you want it to be doing most of the work while you guide it.
  8. Once you are happy with the size of your bowls, you can then use a grinding wheel to slightly grind down the outside of the stone to give it a smoother surface.
  9. Once you are finished, give your piece of travertine a really wood wash in soap and water. You can also give it a coat of food safe wax if you want to.

Add a little gold spoon, some sea salt flakes and an artisan pepper or some spices and you have the cutest Christmas gift! I feel like this could be such a great gift to replace the classic candle gift that we always end up buying for those people in our lives we’re never quite sure what to get.

I’m really happy with the way this turned out, and now that I know Dremel has the ability to do projects like this, I have so many more ideas I can’t wait to try!


Let us know your thoughts!

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