No matter if you’re an experienced woodworker or just getting started, we want to provide you with the best books on woodworking to help you progress in your woodworking career. It may be that you need something to help get you going as quickly as possible. You might have an intermediate skillset but want to understand your hobby or trade better. This handy guide will cover everything.
How We Selected Books For Our Collection
We wanted to list timeless and highly regarded woodworking books for all skill levels.
These are the criteria that we used to make our recommendations:
Core Woodworking Principles
The listed books contain a thorough coverage of a wide variety of woodworking topics. They offer comprehensive and useful information for woodworkers.
Thoroughly Covers Each Topic
The picked books go over many aspects related to woodworking, ensuring readers can understand the trade. They address essential topics like woodworking fundamentals, tools, joinery, wood properties, and project execution.
Starting from Scratch
The recommendations include books that are geared toward beginners. These books offer step-by-step instructions, basic techniques explained, and advice for beginners.
Covering the Gamut of Expertise
Each author offers a unique approach, perspective, and expertise to woodworking. With such knowledge, a reader can find their happy place in the world of woodworking.
Our Curated List
This list of book recommendations is by no means exhaustive. Rather than quantity, we went with quality-a few top recommendations revered by beginners and experts. While some are not on the best-seller list, and some are not even written in the last ten years, they hold up even to this day.
- “The Complete Manual of Woodworking” by Albert Jackson and David Day: This comprehensive guide covers all aspects of woodworking, including tools, techniques, joinery, and finishing. It’s a contemporary masterpiece in its 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 book focuses on joints, also called joinery.
- “The Essential Woodturner: A Step-by-Step Guide to the Skills, Tools, and Techniques” by Hilary Bowen: This book is for all those out there who love to see that lathe spin. It covers the essential tools, techniques, and safety considerations for creating beautiful turned-wood projects.
- “The Workbench Book” by Scott Landis: This book features several workbench design ideas, offering inspiration and guidance to woodworkers who are looking to build that perfect workbench. It includes detailed plans and photographs.
Books For Beginners
The above titles provide a wealth of information for new woodworkers. Below are a few more recommendations worth considering.
- “Woodworking 101: Skill-Building Projects that Teach the Basics” by Joe Hurst-Wajszczuk: By providing easy-to-do starter projects, this book offers readers a glimpse into the world of woodworking. 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 beginners, this comprehensive guide provides a thorough introduction to the world of woodworking.
- “Woodworking for the Weekend: 20 Projects Using Reclaimed Timber” by Mark Griffiths: If you’re looking for easy projects with practical applications that will make your spouse happy, this starter guide is for you. For those interested in sustainability and the environment, this book is for you, with beautiful photographs and instructions on working with reclaimed wood.
- “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Woodworking” by Reed Karen: This book covers all the basics with the absolute beginner in mind. Within the pages of this book, you’ll discover how to best use tools and approach woodworking projects.
Crafting with Offerman: Exploring Nick Offerman’s Woodworking Book
Actor Nick Offerman, best known for playing Ron Swanson, a character on the hit TV show “Parks and Recreation” has written a book called “Good Clean Fun: Misadventures in Sawdust at Offerman Woodshop.” In this captivating book, Offerman channels his deep love for woodworking, sharing his passion and providing readers with unique insights into his experiences at his cherished 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. It combines a woodworking guide and a memoir, showcasing Offerman’s love for craftsmanship and creativity.
Woodworking On-the-Go: Pocket-Sized Books for Woodworkers
For woodworkers on the go, pocket-sized books on woodworking serve as convenient and portable references that can be easily accessed whenever needed. They contain essential information when needed in the field.
- “Woodworker’s Pocket Reference” by Charles Self: This handy reference book is a great way to learn about a variety of woodworking subjects, such as tools and joinery. It also covers finishing techniques.
- “The Handy Shop Reference: Useful Facts and Figures for Every Woodworker” by Tom Begnal: This small reference book contains a wealth of information. Some may say this is a must-have resource since it’s packed with information and in a size that makes it portable for any project.
For the size-to-value ratio, these light and portable reference guides pack a punch. Chalked full of value in such a small size.
Woodworking, with its abundance of knowledge and boundless inspiration, serves as a captivating realm that nurtures the passions and fuels the creativity of both novices and seasoned craftsmen alike. Allow the recommended books in this guide to be your reliable companions on the path of woodworking, offering invaluable guidance, unwavering support, and a vast array of knowledge to enhance your skills and enrich your woodworking experience. So check one or two out. Browse them on Amazon. Pick up a couple that resonates with you, and enrich your woodworking journey!