6 books like How to Carve Wood

By Richard Butz,

Here are 6 books that How to Carve Wood fans have personally recommended if you like How to Carve Wood. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Unknown Craftsman: A Japanese Insight Into Beauty

Strother Purdy Author Of Doormaking: Materials, Techniques, and Projects for Building Your First Door

From my list on on working with your hands.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a teenager, I worked on cars and motorcycles in my spare time while apprenticing in an architectural millwork shop, paneling the homes of the rich and famous. Thus I discovered the great joys and satisfactions of working with my hands. After a long stint in graduate school, then four years as an editor at Fine Woodworking magazine and for Taunton Press books, I opened a custom design furniture business in 2000. Travel, writing, and reading are aligned passions, and I’ve lived, taught English, and woodworking here and abroad in France, Slovakia, India, and Japan.

Strother's book list on on working with your hands

Strother Purdy Why did Strother love this book?

They say that travel opens the mind in ways that staying home doesn’t. Books can take you places you can’t otherwise go. So with Yanagi, I got to visit the mind of an early 20th-century Japanese craft connoisseur who looked at thousand-year-old (plain and unassuming) tea bowls and wondered why they’re utterly beautiful and treasured (the best fetch huge sums at auctions–$25million recently for one). Yanagi’s exploration of how the hands of craftsmen can unknowingly and unintentionally create objects of great beauty was both fascinating as it was challenging. It made my shop work a hundred times more enjoyable.

By Soetsu Yanagi,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked The Unknown Craftsman as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

craftsman working in a set tradition for a lifetime? What is the value of handwork? Why should even the roughly lacquered rice bowl of a Japanese farmer be thought beautiful? The late Soetsu Yanagi was the first to fully explore the traditional Japanese appreciation for objects born, not made.' Mr. Yanagi sees folk art as a manifestation of the essential world from which art, philosophy, and religion arise and in which the barriers between them disappear. The implications of the author's ideas are both far-reaching and practical. Soetsu Yanagi is often'


Book cover of The New Fine Points of Furniture: Early American: The Good, Better, Best, Superior, Masterpiece

Strother Purdy Author Of Doormaking: Materials, Techniques, and Projects for Building Your First Door

From my list on on working with your hands.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a teenager, I worked on cars and motorcycles in my spare time while apprenticing in an architectural millwork shop, paneling the homes of the rich and famous. Thus I discovered the great joys and satisfactions of working with my hands. After a long stint in graduate school, then four years as an editor at Fine Woodworking magazine and for Taunton Press books, I opened a custom design furniture business in 2000. Travel, writing, and reading are aligned passions, and I’ve lived, taught English, and woodworking here and abroad in France, Slovakia, India, and Japan.

Strother's book list on on working with your hands

Strother Purdy Why did Strother love this book?

Albert Sack is a riot. He lines up expensive antiques, ranks them from the definitive label “Masterpiece” to the slow-hand insult of “Good”. He describes each in brutally honest and thereby exceptionally insightful terms. One chair is “a brilliant achievement”, while a clock is “relatively crude,” and a table’s legs “end nowhere.” No one comes away with a trophy for participation, making the book exceptionally good to train your eye towards good design. You want people to like the things you make, don’t you? Learn to distinguish good from great with Albert.

By Albert Sack,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The New Fine Points of Furniture as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

An indispensable guide for collectors and dealers who want to compare and evaluate early American antiques. When Albert Sack's Fine Points of Furniture: Early American--Good, Better, Best was published in 1950, it established a new standard for evaluating American antiques. In his new book, Sack applies this standard to furniture pieces that have appeared on the market in more recent years. Full color and black-and-white photographs.


Book cover of Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry Into the Value of Work

Rebecca Struthers Author Of Hands of Time: A Watchmaker's History

From my list on for people who love taking things apart.

Why am I passionate about this?

For as long as I can remember I’ve been obsessed with figuring out how things work. What started with me pulling apart redundant household tech as a child (thanks to my very supportive parents) has become a lifelong passion in making and restoring one of the most incredible machines invented – the watch. Our millennia-old obsession with making things tells us so much about who we are and the world we like in. I love all of these books as, in varied ways, they inspire curiosity and connect us with our innately human instinct to understand the world around us.

Rebecca's book list on for people who love taking things apart

Rebecca Struthers Why did Rebecca love this book?

Shop Class as Soulcraft is a very special book to me, because it’s the first one I read over 10 years ago that managed to perfectly weave between the philosophy and practice of craft. It was that moment of “wow, I want to be able to write like this!”

Too often, craft is studied by academics or theorists, while the craftspeople getting their hands dirty rarely write about what they do. This book so perfectly balances between the two, it’s an ode to making, with the passion for working with your hands oozing from every page in such a brilliantly funny and engaging way.

By Matthew B. Crawford,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Shop Class as Soulcraft as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A philosopher/mechanic's wise (and sometimes funny) look at the challenges and pleasures of working with one's hands 

“This is a deep exploration of craftsmanship by someone with real, hands-on knowledge. The book is also quirky, surprising, and sometimes quite moving.” —Richard Sennett, author of The Craftsman

Called “the sleeper hit of the publishing season” by The Boston Globe, Shop Class as Soulcraft became an instant bestseller, attracting readers with its radical (and timely) reappraisal of the merits of skilled manual labor. On both economic and psychological grounds, author Matthew B. Crawford questions the educational imperative of turning everyone into a…


Book cover of Make A Chair From A Tree: An Introduction To Working Green Wood

Strother Purdy Author Of Doormaking: Materials, Techniques, and Projects for Building Your First Door

From my list on on working with your hands.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a teenager, I worked on cars and motorcycles in my spare time while apprenticing in an architectural millwork shop, paneling the homes of the rich and famous. Thus I discovered the great joys and satisfactions of working with my hands. After a long stint in graduate school, then four years as an editor at Fine Woodworking magazine and for Taunton Press books, I opened a custom design furniture business in 2000. Travel, writing, and reading are aligned passions, and I’ve lived, taught English, and woodworking here and abroad in France, Slovakia, India, and Japan.

Strother's book list on on working with your hands

Strother Purdy Why did Strother love this book?

There are more comprehensive and detailed books on green woodworking, but none with Alexander’s unedited, liberating spirit, or his pioneering work. Lines such as “You need very few tools to go into the woods and bust a chair out of a tree” gave me a kind of permission to be bold, experiment, and just have fun (which is what he did, and is where the book comes from). You’ll learn how to make chairs (chairs!) with a small set of tools. You’ll likely put the book down before finishing it, and run into the woods to get started.

By John D. Alexander Jr.,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Make A Chair From A Tree as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

When a tree is felled, the wood is green and is easy to cut, split, shave and shape. As it dries, the wood shrinks and hardensQand it becomes vastly more difficult to work. In the old days, wood-workers relied on the ease with which green wood could be worked to make the parts they needed, and on the way wood shrinks to hold these parts together. These old ways have almost been lost, but are revived here for the modern woodworker. Make a Chair From a Tree is a lively and informative introduction to the old ways of splitting and…


Book cover of By These Ten Bones

Sarah M. Awa Author Of Hunter's Moon

From my list on pawsitively awesome werewolfs.

Why am I passionate about this?

While the werewolf curse isn’t real (as far as we know/thank goodness!), I do know what it’s like to have my life turned upside down by a painful illness that seems like a curse. When I was 23, I almost died from a rare autoimmune disease that tried to devour my lungs. More than a decade later, I’m still here and fighting, and my escapist love of reading fantasy books turned into a passion to write them. I also love metaphors and werewolves, and it all combined nicely with my BA in English! Aside from writing, I help other “underdog” authors as COO for indie publisher Thinklings Books.

Sarah's book list on pawsitively awesome werewolfs

Sarah M. Awa Why did Sarah love this book?

This book is at the top of my list because it’s one of my very favorites. Dunkle spins a gripping, atmospheric story with memorable characters, and you can tell she’s done her research on medieval Scotland. I love the old Celtic tales woven in, and the sweet romance between Maddie and the woodcarver. But what I like most of all is the theme of redemption. Maddie is a true hero, brave in the face of an unimaginably powerful, ancient evil. She showed me that you don’t have to be big or strong or rich or “somebody” to make a difference. You just have to be willing, have faith, and do your part.

By Clare B. Dunkle,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked By These Ten Bones as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 11, 12, 13, and 14.

What is this book about?

There’s hidden places all over this land-old, old places. Places with a chain for them to chain up the wolf when it’s time.
A mysterious young man has come to a small Highland town. His talent for wood carving soon wins the admiration of the weaver’s daughter, Maddie. Fascinated by the silent carver, she sets out to gain his trust, only to find herself drawn into a terrifying secret that threatens everything she loves.
     There is an evil presence in the carver’s life that cannot be controlled, and Maddie watches her town fall under a shadow. One by one, people…


Book cover of The Attributes: 25 Hidden Drivers of Optimal Performance

Stephen Shedletzky Author Of Speak-Up Culture: When Leaders Truly Listen, People Step Up

From my list on transforming your leadershit into leadership.

Why am I passionate about this?

The first day of my career began with 1,000 people being laid off citing “post-merger efficiencies.” I was the young whippersnapper walking in as many more were walking out, boxes in hand. I saw, firsthand, the impact of uncertainty, lack of clear and transparent communications, and leadership, not just on performance, but also on the health and well-being of the colleagues around me. In that first job I became fascinated and obsessed with how work can be something we enjoy and find meaning in. Since then, I’ve devoted my career to making work more inspiring, engaging, and fulfilling. This became my passion and cause because I felt the very opposite.

Stephen's book list on transforming your leadershit into leadership

Stephen Shedletzky Why did Stephen love this book?

We’re told to hire the most skilled and experienced folks and that couldn’t be worse advice.

Ret. Navy SEAL Commander Rich Diviney teaches us that when we hire, build teams, and promote folks not only considering their skills, but focusing on their attributes, we can truly create teams where one plus one equals infinity. Diviney examines the categories of attributes for optimal individual and team performance – Grit, Situational Awareness, Drive, Leadership, and Teamability.

A must read for anyone who wants to make the most of their life, career, and relationships around them. 

By Rich Diviney,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Attributes as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'So much of what I know about trust I learned from Rich Diviney'- Simon Sinek
'Incredible... explains why some people thrive - even when things get hard' - Charles Duhigg
'If you care about getting better, you need to buy this book' Daniel Coyle

Learn the secret to being your best

During his twenty years as a Navy officer and SEAL, Rich Diviney was intimately involved in specialized SEAL selection, whittling hundreds of extraordinary candidates down to a handful of elite performers. But Diviney was often surprised by who succeeded. Those with the right skills sometimes failed, while others he…


3 book lists we think you will like!

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