Whether you’re looking to become a professional woodworker by taking your hobby to the next level, you’re embarking on something new for the first time or you’re already a pro looking to brush up on your craft, there’s always something to be said for learning new tricks of the trade. From your materials to the way you use them, there is always so much to learn about woodworking.
There are a few habits and tips that can get you to a solid place with your craft, and while you might already know some of them, finding even one new tip can boost your knowledge base and help your craft.
1. Have a Plan
Planning out your projects is essential, no matter how experienced you are. In fact, the more experienced woodworkers are the best planners out there. People always say to measure twice and cut once, and there’s truth in that statement. When you have a clear plan, you’ll know what materials you’ll need and what the time commitment looks like so you can stay on a roll.
2. Know Your Safety Equipment
Keeping yourself safe ensures that you can keep on doing the things you love — like woodworking — without any hiccups or bumps in the road. Safety goggles, close-toed shoes and hair out of your face is the way to go for the best precautions. There are so many options for safety equipment, from gloves to face shields and beyond. Take a look at what you have and where you need a little more protection.
3. Stay Organized
Keeping your tools and materials in order is one of the best ways to keep your projects running smoothly and give you access to everything you need as you need it. Specifically, having storage that’s well-maintained, clean and often transportable is ideal. Looking into quality shelving that can hold everything you need can make your life in woodworking much easier.
4. Watch Your Peers
Doing what you do best is always important, but it’s never a bad idea to get some inspiration. Subscribe to Youtube channels and follow Instagram accounts dedicated to woodworking. Find skilled friends you can learn from and exchange ideas with. Growth often comes from exchange.
5. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Getting creative can be such a blessing, especially if you’re working on a budget. If you’re still learning and getting your footing or you’re trying out some new ideas, using old, recycled materials can bring new life into your craft, plus, if you can find free wood or cheap wood you’ll save tons of money. Who knows? You might make something totally unique.
6. Know Your Wood
Before you go out and get a specific wood to work with, make sure you do your research and learn all about it. Is it paint grade or stain grade? Is it flimsy, or strong enough to hold weight? These are things you should consider before starting your project. You don’t have to learn it all in a day, but acquiring knowledge piece by piece can make all the difference.
No matter where you are in your woodworking journey, there is always so much more to learn. The craft will never leave you bored, so you’ll be building and learning for years to come.