We wanted to share the best woodworking guides with you, whether you are a woodworker who is a pro or just starting. You might need something to get you started right away. Or you’re already at an intermediate to advanced level and want to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for your craft. Our handy guide will cover all bases.
How We Came Up With Our List
Our recommendations for woodworking publications are designed to give a balanced list of books that appeal to different skill levels and interests.
Here are the criteria we used to base our recommendations on:
The listed books contain a thorough coverage of a wide variety of woodworking topics. The books cover most woodworking topics in great depth.
The chosen books cover a broad spectrum of woodworking aspects, ensuring readers can understand the craft well. These books address topics as diverse as woodworking fundamentals, joinery, wood characteristics, and project completion are also included.
Selecting Beginner-Friendly Books for Woodworkers
Some books are better suited for advanced or intermediate woodworkers. However, there are titles that are specifically designed for beginners. Using simple explanations, the authors walk the reader through step by step.
Covering the Gamut of Expertise
The list represents a wide variety of authors and techniques covering many aspects of woodworking. The books allow readers to discover new techniques and explore various methods.
We Present Our List
This list is anything but comprehensive. We’d be here all day if that were the case. Rather than quantity, we went with quality-a few top recommendations revered by beginners and experts. Some of these books were not published in the current decade but are timeless.
- “Understanding Wood Finishing: How to Select and Apply the Right Finish” by Bob Flexner: For all things regarding wood finishing, this comprehensive guide helps with applying various lacquers and varnishes to troubleshoot when things go slightly awry.
- “The Unplugged Woodshop: Handcrafted Projects for the Home and Workshop” by Tom Fidgen: This book emphasizes hand-tool woodworking and offers a collection of projects suitable for beginners. Detailed instructions and valuable insights are included to assist in the creation of handcrafted furniture and accessories using minimal tools and traditional techniques.
- “The Essential Woodworker” by Robert Wearing: Like the Amish, this book focuses on historical techniques.
- “The Anarchist’s Tool Chest” by Christopher Schwarz: Focused on tools, this book recommends hand tools over modern powered tools. It also gets philosophical and talks about the mental state of woodworking.
- “The Workbench Book” by Scott Landis: While the previous book emphasized tools, this focuses on the craftsman’s workspace-specifically the workbench. The book includes photographs and detailed plans.
The above titles provide a wealth of information for new woodworkers. Here are a couple more suggestions for your consideration.
- “Woodworking 101: Skill-Building Projects that Teach the Basics” by Joe Hurst-Wajszczuk: This book gives readers a taste of woodworking by offering easy-to-do starter projects. Equipped with easy to follow instructions and expert guidance, it ensures that readers can successfully complete each project confidently.
- “The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Woodworking: Skills, Techniques, and Projects” by Gareth Branwyn: Ideal for those just starting out, this guide covers all basics starting at the beginning.
- “Woodworking for the Weekend: 20 Projects Using Reclaimed Timber” by Mark Griffiths: This book includes a selection of weekend project ideas that are specifically designed for newbies. This book is an excellent choice for individuals who have an interest in sustainability and repurposing materials.
- “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Woodworking” by Reed Karen: Don’t be insulted by the title. It’s humbling to start at square one. But also exciting. This read is for those embarking into the world of woodworking for the first time. It takes the beginner through sample projects and provides ideas and plans to whet the appetite.
Woodworking Wisdom by Nick Offerman: A Noteworthy Mention
Who knew actor Nick Offerman has a flair for all things woodworking? So much so that he wrote a book called “Good Clean Fun: Misadventures in Sawdust at Offerman Woodshop.” In this book, Offerman shares his passion for woodworking and provides insights into his experiences at his woodworking shop. Within the pages of this book, Offerman not only discusses his woodworking projects but also shares valuable tips, techniques, and sprinkles in humorous anecdotes for an engaging reading experience. Blending elements of a woodworking guide and a memoir, this book showcases Offerman’s profound love for craftsmanship and creativity.
Woodworking On-the-Go: Pocket-Sized Books for Woodworkers
Ideal for the on-the-move woodworker, small, portable reference guides are great for quick access. These compact books often provide concise information and quick tips.
- “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 these books may not cover all aspects of woodworking in great detail, they can be valuable resources for quick tips, reminders, and project ideas when you’re on the go or need a handy reference in your workshop.
Whether you are a beginner taking your first steps into the world of woodworking or an experienced craftsman seeking new avenues of inspiration, this field is teeming with knowledge and creative ideas that are sure to ignite your imagination. The recommended books in this guide can serve as trusted companions on your woodworking journey. You can rely on the books recommended in this guide to help you along your woodworking journey.Consider the recommended books in this guide as steadfast companions on your woodworking journey, providing trusted guidance and valuable insights every step of the way. So check one or two out. Browse them on Amazon. Pick up a couple that resonates with you, and enrich your woodworking journey!