TedsWoodworking Plans and Projects

You Don’t Have To Be A Natural Woodworker To Work With Wood!

confusedI was reading an article in Popular Woodworking Magazine written by Chris Schawrz. He had an interesting point about woodworking that puts a stop to some when it comes to woodworking.

They would love to try it but think you have to have a natural ability to even get started. This is not true though. And as he stated, some think you either have the knack or you don’t.

He called it “crazy talk” in the article, and I agree. That is crazy talk. Even when it comes to designing the furniture, you don’t have to have a natural ability. I know when I started, I would use other pieces of furniture such as tables, etc.. to determine a good height, width, or whatever.

This way it would match up in size so that it would be comfortable to sit at, sit on, or….you get the point. Or maybe it comes to shapes, stains, or anything else in the woodworking building process.

You don’t have to have a “God given” talent (quotes from Schwarz) in order to become a woodworker. – Though if you work like him with just hand tools, you will be slow in getting projects out the door.

Don’t get me wrong, there are those that have a natural ability, and they are awesome. But I have seen projects from both experienced and natural woodworkers alike, and they can rival each other.

As mentioned in the article from Schwarz, anyone can figure out how to design pieces that are not just well proportioned, but also pieces that will inspire you.

I am not a natural when it comes to woodworking, but use experience. In fact, when it comes to speed, I am slower than many others. But many relatives see my work and say, “I thought that you bought that from a furniture store.”

You have to develop an eye for design if you aren’t a naturalist, and at times this takes putting pen to paper. It all depends on you as an individual. If I have a customer that wants custom work they will sometimes put pen to paper for me.

But again, it will matter who you are and even a naturally talented woodworker will have areas that he excels more than others. He may be able to execute the design that others give him.

He may design well and have to think harder about the execution. It just depends on where his talent lies. But it also depends on his experience as well, because even one who has a natural ability is going to need experience.

So when it comes down to it, experience is really the key no matter who you are. There is more to experience though than trial and error. Experience comes from what you see done.

That is why I love this age of woodworking. You can learn so much just by looking at others work. This includes woodworking magazines, websites, and more.

So if you would love to give woodworking a try, go ahead. It isn’t just a natural talent that will get you cranking out projects and pieces you and others will love. Experience will make you into a woodworker no matter who you are.


DO YOU HAVE a woodworking project or tip that you would like to submit to WooDesigner and get it added to our site? Then go to the contact tab below OR at the top of this page and let me know. Just make sure you are able to give us step by step instructions on it, as well as images as you see here, and we will put it on this site just like you have read on this page! As long as it is clear and concise like you just saw, it will go up. Your name will be credited to the project, as where you live. (Please include that.) Also include the type of lumber you use for the design. We look forward to hearing from you! (Take note that the tip and images and instructions have to become ours. I do hate that so much but in today’s society so many will sue, and yes, you can sue for a lot of money over images.) The tips will need to include YOUR IMAGES that you take. They can’t be images from somewhere online. Remember, we have to go through these images and if they aren’t your own, we will not be able to use them. This is illegal and it won’t be tolerated and you will be banned from this community by being blocked. We can get sued for this, and just one bad apple can ruin our community.

Ted Leger –


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Updated: December 16, 2014 — 9:55 pm
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