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. You might want something to get started as soon as possible. You might have an intermediate skillset but want to understand your hobby or trade better. Our handy guide will provide you with all the information you need to be on your way.
How We Came Up With Our List
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:
Relevance To Woodworking
These books are geared toward woodworking and cover a wide range of topics, including techniques, joinery, and projects. They offer comprehensive and useful information for woodworkers.
The picked books go over many aspects related to woodworking, ensuring readers can understand the trade. They cover important woodworking topics in depth.
While some books are more suitable for intermediate or advanced woodworkers, the recommendations include titles tailored to beginners. Considering that not everyone is an expert, the list includes selections for those just establishing their foundation in woodworking.
Covering the Gamut of Expertise
The list represents a wide variety of authors and techniques covering many aspects of woodworking. This gives readers the opportunity to learn about different techniques and discover where they would like to focus.
Our Curated List
This list of book recommendations is by no means exhaustive. So we went with a few that are well-known and revered in woodworking circles. They are timeless, even if some were not written during this decade.
- “The Complete Manual of Woodworking” by Albert Jackson and David Day: This extensive guide covers every aspect of woodworking, such as tools, joinery, and finishing. It is a classic.
- “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 provides a detailed guide for woodturning lovers, demonstrating how to turn wood on a chuck. 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. This book contains detailed plans and photos.
Essential Books for Beginners
In addition to the previously mentioned books, a handful of other titles prove especially advantageous for woodworking beginners, providing them with valuable insights. Allow us to provide you with a few more recommendations.
- “Woodworking 101: Skill-Building Projects that Teach the Basics” by Joe Hurst-Wajszczuk: With a focus on easy-to-do starter projects, this book gives readers a practical and enjoyable way to dip their toes into the world of woodworking. The reader can follow along and check their progress toward their project completion.
- “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: This book presents a curated selection of weekend projects exclusively for beginners, making it the perfect resource to kickstart their woodworking journey. If recycling is near and dear to your heart, and you’d like to take that sentiment into your woodworking journey, this book is for you.
- “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Woodworking” by Reed Karen: This book is a user-friendly guide that thoroughly covers the fundamental aspects of woodworking. It takes the beginner through sample projects and provides ideas and plans to whet the appetite.
Honorable Mention, Nick Offerman’s Book on Woodworking
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.” Through this book, Offerman opens up about his profound fondness for woodworking, inviting readers into his world and sharing insightful experiences from his shop. He discusses his woodworking projects, shares tips, and techniques, and includes humorous anecdotes. It combines a woodworking guide and a memoir, showcasing Offerman’s love for craftsmanship and creativity.
Woodworkers Pocket Books
Sometimes a woodworker needs to reference tips and techniques in the field. That’s where pocket-sized books come in. 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 consolidated guide is a treasure trove of information. It covers all the essential topics, and it’s small enough to carry in the field for quick access.
- “The Pocket Hole Drilling Jig Project Book” by Danny Proulx: This pocket book concentrates on the popular woodworking technique of pocket hole joinery. You’ll get practical step-by-step projects 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.
The world of woodworking is a treasure trove of knowledge and inspiration, catering to beginners and seasoned artisans’ needs and aspirations. 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. We hope that a few of these books can provide guidance and wisdom to elevate and enhance your woodworking pursuits.