We wanted to share the best woodworking guides with you, whether you are a woodworker who is a pro or just starting. You might want something to get started as soon as possible. Or you’re already at an intermediate to advanced level and want to gain a deeper understanding and appreciation for your craft. All aspects are covered in our easy and quick guide.
The Criteria That Guide Our Book Choices
Our woodworking book suggestions aim to provide an unbiased list of popular and highly regarded books catering to different levels of skill and interest within the woodworking industry.
Our recommendations were based on the following criteria:
The recommended books cover topics like techniques and projects. The books are comprehensive and provide practical information to woodworkers.
The selected books are comprehensive and cover many aspects of woodworking. This ensures readers have a solid grasp of the art. These books address topics as diverse as woodworking fundamentals, joinery, wood characteristics, and project completion are also included.
Starting from Scratch
These books cater to both beginners and intermediate 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 list represents a wide variety of authors and techniques covering many aspects of woodworking. This allows readers to explore different methods and find the techniques that resonate with them.
Handpicked List: Top Recommendations You Don’t Want to Miss
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 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 guide contains a thorough coverage of all aspects of woodworking. 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 Essential Woodworker” by Robert Wearing: Like the Amish, this book focuses on historical techniques.
- “The Anarchist’s Tool Chest” by Christopher Schwarz: This book discusses the tools that are essential for woodworking. From modern powered tools to historical but practical hand tools. It also gets philosophical and talks about the mental state of woodworking.
- “The Workbench Book” by Scott Landis: Scott so eloquently covers the physical space around the woodworker, emphasizing the workbench. The book includes photographs and detailed plans.
A couple of additional titles stand out as particularly beneficial for woodworking novices, supplementing the books mentioned above with valuable information. Here are a couple more suggestions for your consideration.
- “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. 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: 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.
- “Woodworking Basics: Mastering the Essentials of Craftsmanship” by Peter Korn: Everyone has to start at square one. And that usually means learning the fundamentals if that’s a language or, in this case, woodworking. This book sees the world of woodworking through new eyes.
- “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. The reader can follow along and check their progress toward their project completion.
Nick Offerman’s Woodworking Book: A Notable Addition to the List
Nick Offerman, the actor known for his role as Ron Swanson in the TV show “Parks and Recreation,” has written a book on woodworking titled “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. He shares his woodworking techniques, tips, and stories. Blending elements of a woodworking guide and a memoir, this book showcases Offerman’s profound love for craftsmanship and creativity.
Woodworking Essentials in Your Pocket: Pocket Books for the Craft
Ideal for the on-the-move woodworker, small, portable reference guides are great for quick access. Compact woodworking books are known for their ability to deliver concise information and handy quick tips.
- “The Handy Shop Reference: Useful Facts and Figures for Every Woodworker” by Tom Begnal: This small reference book contains a wealth 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-sized guide focuses on pocket joinery, one of the most popular techniques in woodworking. You’ll get practical step-by-step projects using 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. Think of the recommended books in this guide as trusted allies accompanying you on your woodworking journey. So check one or two out. Browse them on Amazon. Pick up a couple that resonates with you, and enrich your woodworking journey!