We wanted to share the best woodworking guides with you, whether you are a woodworker who is a pro or just starting. Getting started and quickly oriented may be what you need. Or perhaps you’re at a more advanced level but would like to understand better and appreciate your craft. Our handy guide will cover all bases.
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.
The standards on which we created our recommendations are listed below:
The listed books contain a thorough coverage of a wide variety of woodworking topics. They provide comprehensive and practical information for woodworkers.
The chosen books provide a comprehensive overview of the woodworking craft, helping readers to gain a thorough understanding. They cover topics such as the fundamentals of woodworking, tools, joining, wood properties, and the science of wood.
Beginner-Friendly Woodworking Resources
These books cater to both beginners and intermediate woodworkers. 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
The books are written by a variety of authors. Each one brings a unique perspective, experience, and approach to the woodworking world. The books allow readers to discover new techniques and explore various methods.
We Present Our List
This list does not include all possible books on the subject. We would rather present some notable woodworking titles highly regarded both by professionals and enthusiasts. Some have weathered the test of time, and although they have seen some years, they still remain relevant to this day.
- “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: Beginners will find a variety of projects in this book that focus on hand-tool woodworking. It offers in-depth guidance and valuable insights for crafting furniture and accessories by employing basic tools and traditional methods.
- “The Toolbox Book: A Craftsman’s Guide to Tool Chests, Cabinets, and Storage Systems” by Jim Tolpin: The beauty of several books on this list is that they’re modular. They fit together. This one highlights the woodworker’s toolbox and the organization of the workshop. It offers insights into design considerations, storage solutions, and practical tips for efficient tool organization.
- “The Essential Woodworker” by Robert Wearing: This book emphasizes traditional woodworking techniques and skills.
- “The Anarchist’s Tool Chest” by Christopher Schwarz: This book is a guide to the most important tools for woodworking, and it emphasizes hand tools rather than power tools. It also covers doctrine and mindset.
- “The Workbench Book” by Scott Landis: While the previous book emphasized tools, this focuses on the craftsman’s workspace-specifically the workbench. Included are practical and easy-to-use workbench plans.
Books For Beginners
The above titles provide a wealth of information for new woodworkers. Here are a couple more suggestions for your consideration.
- “Woodworking for the Weekend: 20 Projects Using Reclaimed Timber” by Mark Griffiths: This book includes a selection of weekend project ideas that are specifically designed for newbies. 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: With a slight chuckle at the title, this book is an ideal guide for beginners, providing a comprehensive overview of woodworking essentials. 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: You have to start somewhere. This book is for those taking the first steps into the world of woodworking.
- “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. Equipped with easy to follow instructions and expert guidance, it ensures that readers can successfully complete each project confidently.
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.” 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 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.
Woodworkers Pocket Books
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 handy reference book is packed with 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. In this book, you’ll find step-by-step instructions for numerous projects that leverage a pocket hole jig.
Although these books may not delve deeply into every aspect of woodworking, they serve as valuable resources for quick tips and helpful reminders.
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. 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!