Types of woodworking projects: Best way to learn

Woodworking is the process of creating items out of wood. As that description is very broad, the things that you can do with woodworking is even more broad. You can make things from furniture, to toys and game, and to instruments.


  1. What can you do with woodworking?
  2. Best way to learn woodworking

What can you do with woodworking?

  1. Furniture
  2. Clocks
  3. Games and toys
  4. Decoration
  5. Outdoor furniture
  6. Utensils
  7. Renovations
  8. Playsets
  9. Workshop items
  10. Kitchen items
  11. Storage
  12. Instruments


Furniture is a very common item that is made by many woodworker. It is also a very beginner friendly item because a lot of furniture items are shaped in variations of boxes.

Some furniture examples that can be made with woodworking include beds, tables, dressers, cabinets, shelves, bookshelves, ottomans, and chairs.

Think of a generic table, bed, cabinet, and shelf. They are all shaped like a box in some way or form. Once you learn how to create the “beginners box”, you are almost there to building furniture.

Not all furniture items have to be made in a box shape. With woodworking, you can make a round table. I’ve also seen oddly shaped bookshelves in the shape of trees, faces, and animals for example.


Clocks can come in many different designs and shapes and is an item that woodworkers on any level can make. You can make a square clock, circle clock, and I’ve even seen earth shaped clocks.

You can make a tabletop, wall, or standing clock. You can put sticker numbers, numbers made of wood, carved numbers, or no numbers at all. These are just a few possibilities.

Games and toys

Most games and toys require a little bit of expertise to create. Beginner woodworkers can create simple games like Jenga and checkers. More intermediate to advanced woodworkers can create games like tic-tac-toe and four-in-a-row. More advanced woodworkers can create hockey and pool tables.

Toys can be created for kids and adults. Generally, the creation of toys require a little more expertise and carving skills. Toys like tiny wooden tools, planes, and cars can be created for children. Automobiles, characters, and animals can be created for adult enthusiasts.


Wooden wall décor, tabletop lamps, and small tabletop planters are all examples of decoration items that you can make from woodworking. However, your possibilities are almost endless

Wood decoration can be made as simple or intricate you would like. It can also be created by woodworks of any level.

5ft custom-made wall décor

Outdoor Furniture

Outdoor furniture items like chairs, tables, firepits, and hammocks can be created out of wood. However, some of these items will need to be incorporated with non-wood items. A fire pit will need a fire proof interior and a hammock will need a soft and comfortable material to lay on.

However, outdoor furniture items like tables, chairs, and outdoor furniture can be made completely out of wood.


Creating wooden utensils requires a little more sculping and carving skills. But you can create spoons, forks, ladles, chopsticks, and spatulas.


Renovations like building a deck or renovating a staircase is also woodworking. Some people call woodworking on a large scale like this carpentry. However, you are still working with wood.

You will need some additional skills that are not required when creating the other items. You will need to prioritize structure and durability. You will also need to to have a good foundation which may require a specialist.

When creating renovations, you will not need as much carving skills. You will be working with lumber like 2×4’s and 4×4’s and the most design that you will need it a router for the edges.


Indoor and outdoor playsets can be created with woodworking. Playsets can be as simple as a single swing set, to being very complicated. You can create swing sets, seesaws, tire swings, and full playsets with slides.

Workshop items

Since you are woodworking you can build items for your workshop instead of purchasing it. You can create a workbench, chair, miter saw stands, outfeed tables, router tables, and useful jigs.

Kitchen items

You can create items made for your kitchen. Some examples include utensil storage, pan storage, cutting boards, and a drying rack.


General storage items can be created by woodworking like under the bed and under the table storage. You can also build a storage area for shoes, a coat hanger, and organizers.

You can also create multi-use storage items like hidden storage in floating shelves, tables, and ottomans.


Instruments can be created out of wood. One can create simple instruments like the xylophone to complex instruments like a guitar.

Guitar creators master their carving skills and working with stain, paint, gloss, and color to give the instrument a nice uniform look.

Custom-made piano stand

Best way to learn woodworking

Now that you know some of the things that you can do woodworking, you may be wondering what is the best way to learn woodworking. In another article, I explain the two learning approaches to woodworking where I go over each approach and help you decide which one is best for you.

  1. Self-taught woodworker
  2. Woodworking school

Basically, you can either learn by going to school and learning in a class, or you can teach yourself how to woodwork. There are pros and cons to both, and it depends on your time commitment, needs, long term goals, and how much are willing to pay.

Based on your needs, you will need to pick with setting works best for you. If you choose to go to school then you will have a whole curriculum laid out for you to help you succeed.

Self-taught woodworker

If you teach yourself how to woodwork then there are two methods that you can learn. You can take a low cost online course that teaches you everything or you can learn exactly what you want by doing the fill-in-the-gap method.

The brand new woodworker

  • YouTube
  • Cheap/free classes through Udemy and Coursera

I would recommend to first take a good beginner class to first teach you the basics of woodworking. There are many cheap and free options online. Udemy and Coursera regularly have discounts and YouTube is mostly free.

Taking an online course teaches you everything that you need to know. Knowing what to know and knowing what you don’t know can be difficult for a beginner who doesn’t know any.

Additionally, you do know know what is right and wrong and you may learn the wrong techniques from others. People who create online courses tend to have more credibility.

The beginner woodworker

When you hit the beginner phase, you can now learn basic projects online. First you need to learn how to build a box. Then you will need to learn joinery methods, gluing, chiseling, and maybe basic carving depending on the projects you want to create.

  1. YouTube videos
  2. Blogs
  3. Online plans

You can take another class, look up videos on YouTube, read how to blogs and documentation, or read a book. I would recommend a more visual approach like taking a class or watching videos for beginner woodworkers because it will be slightly easier to learn.

The more proficient woodworker

Once you learn the basics, then you can master your skills and learn new techniques. I would start to master my skills through practice and learn new skills along the way. To learn new skills you can take classes, look up videos, or read a book.

  1. Woodworking course
  2. Woodworking books

As you learn more advanced skills like complex carving, wood bending, and complex joinery, then I would recommend the book or class method. Books and online content are created by people with more credibility. Additionally, it is difficult to videos online and harder to teach those concepts.


In this article we discussed many of the different things that you can create with wood. Afterwards, we discussed the recommended way to learn woodworking for brand new, beginner, to proficient woodworkers.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this article and I wish you luck on your woodworking journeys!


My name is Rachel Blanding and I am a woodworker. I started woodworking at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. I mainly create and refurbish furniture and create art. In this site I will share with you the knowledge I have gained over the years, and what worked for me and what didn't.

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