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. This handy guide will cover everything.
How We Came Up With Our List
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.
These are the criteria that we used to make our recommendations:
These woodworking books, cover a variety of woodworking topics, including joinery and tools. They provide comprehensive and practical information for woodworkers.
Topics In Depth
The chosen books provide a comprehensive overview of the woodworking craft, helping readers to gain a thorough understanding. They address essential topics like woodworking fundamentals, tools, joinery, wood properties, and project execution.
Starting from Scratch
The recommendations include books that are geared toward 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
The books are written by a variety of authors. Each one brings a unique perspective, experience, and approach to the woodworking world. This allows readers to explore different methods and find the techniques that resonate with them.
Far from comprehensive is our list. Rather than quantity, we went with quality-a few top recommendations revered by beginners and experts. They are timeless, even if some were not written during this decade.
- “Understanding Wood Finishing: How to Select and Apply the Right Finish” by Bob Flexner: The finishing details are some of the most rewarding. Learn to master application approaches.
- “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. Step-by-step instructions and valuable insights are provided for crafting handcrafted furniture and accessories using minimal tools and traditional techniques.
- “The Essential Woodworker” by Robert Wearing: This book emphasizes traditional woodworking techniques and skills.
- “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: This book showcases various workbench designs, providing inspiration and guidance for woodworkers looking to build or upgrade their workbenches. It includes detailed plans and photographs.
Must-Read Books for Novice Readers
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 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. With a commitment to reader success, it walks the reader through each step of the way, guiding them with tips and expert advice.
- “The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Woodworking: Skills, Techniques, and Projects” by Gareth Branwyn: Ideal for those just starting out, this guide covers all basics starting at the beginning.
- “Woodworking for the Weekend: 20 Projects Using Reclaimed Timber” by Mark Griffiths: Tailored to suit the needs of beginners, this book offers an array of weekend projects perfect to start their woodworking journeys. 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. You’ll get sample plans and inspiration to practice your newfound skills.
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. In a remarkable fusion of genres, this book intertwines a woodworking guide with Offerman’s personal memoir, revealing his deep-seated affection for craftsmanship and his limitless creativity.
Handy References: Pocket Books Every Woodworker Should Have
Sometimes a woodworker needs to reference tips and techniques in the field. That’s where pocket-sized books come in. They contain essential information when needed in the field.
- “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.
- “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.
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. 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 check one or two out. Browse them on Amazon. Pick up a couple that resonates with you, and enrich your woodworking journey!