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. Need something to get you started right away? Or you’re well on your way to becoming an expert but still want to expand your understanding and love for your craft. Our handy guide will provide you with all the information you need to be on your way.
How We Came Up With Our List
Our recommendations for woodworking publications are designed to give a balanced list of books that appeal to different skill levels and interests.
Here are the criteria upon which we have based our recommendations:
Woodwork At Their Core
These woodworking books, cover a variety of woodworking topics, including joinery and tools. They are full of useful and comprehensive woodworker information.
The chosen books cover a broad spectrum of woodworking aspects, ensuring readers can understand the craft well. They address essential topics like woodworking fundamentals, tools, joinery, wood properties, and project execution.
Selecting Beginner-Friendly Books for Woodworkers
Beginners can benefit significantly from some of the titles, while some are for more advanced woodworkers. Using simple explanations, the authors walk the reader through step by step.
This selection of books includes books by various authors who each offer their unique expertise and perspective on woodworking. This gives readers the opportunity to learn about different techniques and discover where they would like to focus.
Books that Made the Cut
Far from comprehensive is our list. 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: This book is a comprehensive guide to wood finishing techniques, covering different types of finishes, their application methods, and troubleshooting common issues.
- “The Unplugged Woodshop: Handcrafted Projects for the Home and Workshop” by Tom Fidgen: Hand-tool woodworking takes center stage in this book, presenting a range of projects that are perfect for those starting out. By emphasizing minimal tools and traditional techniques, it delivers detailed instructions and valuable insights for creating handcrafted furniture and accessories.
- “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 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: This book features several workbench design ideas, offering inspiration and guidance to woodworkers who are looking to build that perfect workbench. This book contains detailed plans and photos.
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 the environment, this book is for you, with beautiful photographs and instructions on working with reclaimed wood.
- “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Woodworking” by Reed Karen: Don’t be insulted by the title. It’s humbling to start at square one. But also exciting. This read is for those embarking into the world of woodworking for the first time. You’ll get sample plans and inspiration to practice your newfound skills.
- “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: By providing easy-to-do starter projects, this book offers readers a glimpse into the world of woodworking. With a commitment to reader success, it walks the reader through each step of the way, guiding them with tips and expert advice.
Honorable Mention, Nick Offerman’s Book on Woodworking
Funny man and woodworking aficionado has come out with a book 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. It combines a woodworking guide and a memoir, showcasing Offerman’s love for craftsmanship and creativity.
Woodworking Essentials in Your Pocket: Pocket Books for the Craft
There are pocket-sized books available on woodworking that can be handy references for woodworkers on the go. These compact volumes often contain concise information as well as quick tips.
- “Woodworker’s Pocket Reference” by Charles Self: This handy reference book is a great way to learn about a variety of woodworking subjects, such as tools and joinery. It also covers finishing techniques.
- “The Handy Shop Reference: Useful Facts and Figures for Every Woodworker” by Tom Begnal: This compact reference book provides a wealth of information. It’s a quick and handy guide for woodworkers who want instant access to essential information while working on their projects.
While not as immersive as some of the other titles on our list, the handy guides provide lots of value in a compact size.
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. 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!