Whether you’re a seasoned woodworker or just beginning, we wanted to bring you the best woodworking books to help you grow in your woodworking journey. It may be that you need something to help get you going as quickly as possible. Or perhaps you’re at a more advanced level but would like to understand better and appreciate your craft. We address all areas in our convenient guide.
Criteria For Book Selection
We wanted to list timeless and highly regarded woodworking books for all skill levels.
Here are the criteria upon which we have based our recommendations:
Core Woodworking Principles
These books are geared toward woodworking and cover a wide range of topics, including techniques, joinery, and projects. They are full of useful and comprehensive woodworker information.
The picked books go over many aspects related to woodworking, ensuring readers can understand the trade. They cover topics such as the fundamentals of woodworking, tools, joining, wood properties, and the science of wood.
Some books are better suited for advanced or intermediate woodworkers. However, there are titles that are specifically designed for beginners. These books offer step-by-step instructions, basic techniques explained, and advice for beginners.
Several authors are represented, each with their own techniques and approaches to woodworking. The books allow readers to discover new techniques and explore various methods.
Books that Made the Cut
There are still many books left out of this list. We just couldn’t list them all. Instead, we would like to present a few notable woodworking books highly regarded by enthusiasts and professionals. While some were not written in this decade, they are timeless.
- “The Complete Manual of Woodworking” by Albert Jackson and David Day: This guide contains a thorough coverage of all aspects of woodworking. It’s considered a classic in the field.
- “Understanding Wood: A Craftsman’s Guide to Wood Technology” by R. Bruce Hoadley: This book helps us think like scientists about the materials we work with.
- “The Joint Book: The Complete Guide to Wood Joinery” by Terrie Noll: This comprehensive guide focuses specifically on wood joinery techniques, providing detailed explanations and illustrations of various joints used in woodworking.
- “The Essential Woodturner: A Step-by-Step Guide to the Skills, Tools, and Techniques” by Hilary Bowen: This book offers woodturning enthusiasts an easy-to-understand approach to turning on a lathe. For those of you that want stunning results and smooth curves.
- “The Workbench Book” by Scott Landis: This book features some very practical and creative workbench ideas. You can look forward to some beautiful and detailed drawings.
While the books previously mentioned are valuable for beginners, a few other titles specifically cater to those new to woodworking, offering them tremendous help. We have some additional suggestions to offer you.
- “Woodworking for the Weekend: 20 Projects Using Reclaimed Timber” by Mark Griffiths: This book features a collection of weekend projects specifically designed for beginners. For those interested in sustainability and repurposing materials, you’ll find easy to understand instructions and tips on reclaiming natural materials.
- “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Woodworking” by Reed Karen: Despite the title, this book is a beginner-friendly guide that covers the essentials of woodworking. Within the pages of this book, you’ll discover how to best use tools and approach woodworking projects.
- “Woodworking Basics: Mastering the Essentials of Craftsmanship” by Peter Korn: This book emphasizes the essential skills and techniques of woodworking, providing guidance for beginners as they embark on various projects. It highlights the significance of comprehending and honing fundamental woodworking skills.
- “Woodworking 101: Skill-Building Projects that Teach the Basics” by Joe Hurst-Wajszczuk: This book helps beginners learn woodworking through hands-on projects. To ensure the successful completion of each project, it provides step-by-step instructions, valuable tips, and expert guidance.
Honorable Mention, Nick Offerman’s Book on Woodworking
Funny man and woodworking aficionado has come out with a book titled “Good Clean Fun: Misadventures in Sawdust at Offerman Woodshop.” Through this book, Offerman opens up about his profound fondness for woodworking, inviting readers into his world and sharing insightful experiences from his shop. Offerman takes readers on a captivating journey as he delves into his woodworking projects, generously sharing tips, techniques, and injecting humor through entertaining anecdotes. This unique book seamlessly weaves together a woodworking guide and a memoir, providing readers with a captivating glimpse into Offerman’s unwavering passion for craftsmanship and boundless creativity.
Compact Guides for Woodworkers: Essential Pocket-Sized Books
Pocket-sized woodworking books are available for woodworkers who are on the move. Packed with condensed information and practical tips, compact woodworking books serve as go-to references for woodworkers.
- “The Handy Shop Reference: Useful Facts and Figures for Every Woodworker” by Tom Begnal: This handy reference book is packed with information. It’s a quick and handy guide for woodworkers who want instant access to essential information while working on their projects.
- “The Pocket Hole Drilling Jig Project Book” by Danny Proulx: This pocket-sized book focuses specifically on pocket hole joinery, a popular technique in woodworking. It will help you discover the wide variety of projects that utilize a pocket hole jig.
While not as immersive as some of the other titles on our list, the handy guides provide lots of value in a compact size.
The world of woodworking offers is rich with knowledge and inspiration for both beginners and experienced craftsmen alike. Think of the recommended books in this guide as trusted allies accompanying you on your woodworking journey. We hope that a few of these books can provide guidance and wisdom to elevate and enhance your woodworking pursuits.