Need the best woodworking books to guide you on your journey? 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. This handy guide will cover everything.
The Criteria For How We Choose The Books
Our woodworking book recommendations aim to provide a well-rounded list of popular and highly regarded woodworking books catering to different skill levels and interests within the woodworking community.
These are the criteria that we used to make our recommendations:
Core Woodworking Principles
The recommended books cover topics like techniques and projects. They provide comprehensive and practical information for woodworkers.
The books chosen cover a wide range of woodworking topics so that readers will be able to understand what woodworking is all about. The books cover essential topics such as woodworking fundamentals and tools.
Selecting Beginner-Friendly Books for Woodworkers
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.
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. So we went with a few that are well-known and revered in woodworking circles. Some of these books were not published in the current decade but are timeless.
- “Understanding Wood Finishing: How to Select and Apply the Right Finish” by Bob Flexner: For all things regarding wood finishing, this comprehensive guide helps with applying various lacquers and varnishes to troubleshoot when things go slightly awry.
- “The Unplugged Woodshop: Handcrafted Projects for the Home and Workshop” by Tom Fidgen: This book spotlights hand-tool woodworking, accompanied by a selection of beginner-friendly projects. Detailed instructions and valuable insights are included to assist in the creation of handcrafted furniture and accessories using minimal tools and traditional techniques.
- “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 explores the essential tools needed for woodworking and emphasizes hand tools over power tools. It also touches on the philosophy and mindset of the craft.
- “The Workbench Book” by Scott Landis: Scott so eloquently covers the physical space around the woodworker, emphasizing the workbench. Included are practical and easy-to-use workbench plans.
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. We’d like to share a few more recommendations with you.
- “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. 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 explains tool usage and woodworking techniques and offers simple projects to practice and build skills.
- “Woodworking Basics: Mastering the Essentials of Craftsmanship” by Peter Korn: This book emphasizes the essential skills and techniques of woodworking, providing guidance for beginners as they embark on various projects. It highlights the significance of comprehending and honing fundamental woodworking skills.
- “Woodworking 101: Skill-Building Projects that Teach the Basics” by Joe Hurst-Wajszczuk: This book emphasizes learning by doing by giving the reader easy projects to get started right away. It provides step-by-step instructions, tips, and guidance to ensure the successful completion of each project.
Woodworking Wisdom by Nick Offerman: A Noteworthy Mention
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.” In this book, Offerman shares his passion for woodworking and provides insights into his experiences at his woodworking shop. Along with practical tips, he shares funny stories. It is a book that combines both a woodworking instruction guide and memoir.
Woodworking Essentials in Your Pocket: Pocket Books for the Craft
For woodworkers on the go, pocket-sized books on woodworking serve as convenient and portable references that can be easily accessed whenever needed. These compact books often provide concise information and quick tips.
- “Woodworker’s Pocket Reference” by Charles Self: Encompassing a broad scope of woodworking subjects, this compact reference book is a comprehensive resource that addresses tools, joinery techniques, finishing methods, and various other topics.
- “The Handy Shop Reference: Useful Facts and Figures for Every Woodworker” by Tom Begnal: This consolidated guide is a treasure trove of information. This quick guide provides woodworkers with instant access to important information when working on their project.
These books are not comprehensive, but they do provide quick tips and ideas for projects. They can also be useful when you need to refer back to them in the workshop.
The world of woodworking offers is rich with knowledge and inspiration for both beginners and experienced 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, grab a copy, dive into its pages, and let these authors’ guidance and wisdom enrich your woodworking endeavors. Happy woodworking!