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. 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.
How We Selected Books For Our Collection
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.
Here are the criteria we used to base our recommendations on:
Woodwork At Their Core
These books are geared toward woodworking and cover a wide range of topics, including techniques, joinery, and projects. The books cover most woodworking topics in great depth.
Thoroughly Covers Each Topic
The chosen books provide a comprehensive overview of the woodworking craft, helping readers to gain a thorough understanding. They cover important woodworking topics in depth.
Starting from Scratch
Some books are better suited for advanced or intermediate woodworkers. However, there are titles that are specifically designed for beginners. These books provide step-by-step instructions, explanations of basic techniques, and guidance ideal for those starting their woodworking journey.
Wide Range of Authors and Perspectives
Several authors are represented, each with their own techniques and approaches to woodworking. Readers are allowed to find what works for them.
Our Curated 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.
- “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’s considered a classic in the field.
- “Understanding Wood: A Craftsman’s Guide to Wood Technology” by R. Bruce Hoadley: Even if we’ve worked with wood before, we rarely have understood the science behind wood. This book demystifies wood and helps us see it from a deeper perspective.
- “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 features some very practical and creative workbench ideas. Included are practical and easy-to-use workbench plans.
Books For Beginners
For beginners delving into woodworking, there are a few other titles worth noting. Here are a couple more suggestions for your consideration.
- “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. For those interested in sustainability and repurposing materials, you’ll find easy to understand instructions and tips on reclaiming natural 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. Within the pages of this book, you’ll discover how to best use tools and approach woodworking projects.
- “Woodworking Basics: Mastering the Essentials of Craftsmanship” by Peter Korn: When beginning a new hobby, such as woodworking, everyone starts from square one. It involves grasping the fundamentals. This book helps master those basics to master the art.
- “Woodworking 101: Skill-Building Projects that Teach the Basics” by Joe Hurst-Wajszczuk: This book helps beginners learn woodworking through hands-on projects. To ensure the successful completion of each project, it provides step-by-step instructions, valuable tips, and expert guidance.
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.” Offerman shares in this book his love for woodworking, and gives insights into his woodworking experiences. Offerman takes readers on a captivating journey as he delves into his woodworking projects, generously sharing tips, techniques, and injecting humor through entertaining anecdotes. Blending elements of a woodworking guide and a memoir, this book showcases Offerman’s profound love for craftsmanship and creativity.
Compact Guides for Woodworkers: Essential Pocket-Sized Books
Ideal for the on-the-move woodworker, small, portable reference guides are great for quick access. Packed with condensed information and practical tips, compact woodworking books serve as go-to references for woodworkers.
- “Woodworker’s Pocket Reference” by Charles Self: This compact reference book covers a wide range of woodworking topics, including tools, materials, joinery, finishing techniques, and more.
- “The Handy Shop Reference: Useful Facts and Figures for Every Woodworker” by Tom Begnal: This compact reference book provides 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.
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.
The world of woodworking is a treasure trove of knowledge and inspiration, catering to beginners and seasoned artisans’ needs and aspirations. Think of the recommended books in this guide as trusted allies accompanying you on your woodworking journey. We hope that one or two of these fine books will enrich your woodworking journey!