Need the best woodworking books to guide you on your journey? You may need something to get you oriented and on your way as fast as possible. Or perhaps you’re at a more advanced level but would like to understand better and appreciate your craft. All aspects are covered in our easy and quick guide.
Our recommendations for woodworking books are intended to be a comprehensive list of highly-regarded and popular woodworking titles that cater to varying skill levels and woodworking interests.
Our recommendations were based on the following criteria:
Relevance To Woodworking
The recommended books cover topics like techniques and projects. The books are comprehensive and provide practical information to woodworkers.
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.
Selecting Beginner-Friendly Books for Woodworkers
Beginners can benefit significantly from some of the titles, while some are for more advanced woodworkers. These books are ideal for woodworkers who want to get started. They provide detailed instructions and explain basic techniques.
Covering the Gamut of Expertise
The books are written by a variety of authors. Each one brings a unique perspective, experience, and approach to the woodworking world. Readers are allowed to find what works for them.
Our Curated List
There are still many books left out of this list. We just couldn’t list them all. Rather than quantity, we went with quality-a few top recommendations revered by beginners and experts. While some were not written in this decade, they are timeless.
- “The Complete Manual of Woodworking” by Albert Jackson and David Day: This woodworking guide covers everything from tools to joinery. It’s considered a classic in the field.
- “Understanding Wood: A Craftsman’s Guide to Wood Technology” by R. Bruce Hoadley: This book delves into the science and properties of wood, providing valuable insights for woodworkers who want a deeper understanding of the material they work with.
- “The Joint Book: The Complete Guide to Wood Joinery” by Terrie Noll: This extensive guide is devoted to wood joinery and includes detailed illustrations and explanations of the various woodworking joints.
- “The Essential Woodturner: A Step-by-Step Guide to the Skills, Tools, and Techniques” by Hilary Bowen: For all of those that admittedly have, at one time or another, been entranced by the spin of a lathe, this book is for you. It covers the essential tools, techniques, and safety considerations for creating beautiful turned-wood projects.
- “The Workbench Book” by Scott Landis: This book showcases various workbench designs, providing inspiration and guidance for woodworkers looking to build or upgrade their workbenches. It includes detailed plans and photographs.
Handpicked Books to Kickstart Your Woodworking Adventure
While the books mentioned above provide valuable information for beginners, a few other titles are particularly helpful for those new to woodworking. Here are a couple more suggestions for your consideration.
- “The New Woodworker Handbook” by Tom Hintz: This book is aimed specifically at beginners and covers the basics of woodworking tools, techniques, and safety. With easy to understand instructions, this book guides you through typical projects and provides practical advice to kickstart your woodworking journey.
- “Woodworking Basics: Mastering the Essentials of Craftsmanship” by Peter Korn: You have to start somewhere. This book is for those taking the first steps into the world of woodworking.
- “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 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: Despite the title, this book is a beginner-friendly guide that covers the essentials of woodworking. It explains tool usage and woodworking techniques and offers simple projects to practice and build skills.
Nick Offerman’s Woodworking Book: A Notable Addition to the List
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 book, Offerman shares his passion for woodworking and provides insights into his experiences at his woodworking shop. Offerman’s book dives into his woodworking projects, providing readers with a glimpse into his creative process. Along the way, he generously shares tips, techniques, and adds a touch of humor with delightful 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.
Woodworking Essentials in Your Pocket: Pocket Books for the Craft
Sometimes a woodworker needs to reference tips and techniques in the field. That’s where pocket-sized books come in. 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 consolidated guide is a treasure trove 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.
- “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 provides instructions for various projects created using 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.
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. If you have read this far, you clearly have a taste for this rewarding craft. So grab a copy of these books and enjoy a richer woodworking journey!