WHAT TO DO WITH YOUR WOOD 6 Woodworking Ideas

When looking at ancient cultures, wood was a primary resource for their societies. Whether it was used for building, hunting, fuel or as a tool, wood was essential to the survival and advancement of ancient cultures. Across the globe, wood has been replaced with stronger resources such as steel or plastics, and the art of woodworking is becoming lost in today’s society. Venture into the world of a carpenter and pick up one of the following woodworking styles to make something impressive out of this inspiring resource. You simply can’t beat the feeling of good wood in your hands.

1. Woodburning
Pyrography, or wood burning, is basically drawing with a soldering iron. Special made hot pens come with a wide variety of tips to allow you the freedom to express your creativity through the cave-man’s first fascination, fire. Ever have an event coming up that you need a gift for and are absolutely stumped? Well, the benefit of pyrography is that you can make ANY gift you could ever need! You don’t even have to be good at drawing to participate. Ink transfers are very common in the world of pyrography, which puts the stencil right on the wood for you so all there is to do is run over it with the hot pen. Find a random piece of scrap wood or go buy a premade plaque and burn whatever design your heart desires.

Wood furniture is a hot commodity in home decor and often is quite costly. The high cost can be due to the type of wood, the paint or stain that is applied, or the craftsmanship that has been put into making the piece. Instead of paying wads of cash for a “handcrafted” piece, find a plain, well-made product and take a pyrography pen to it. There are all kinds of designs and patterns out there that can make any boring piece turn into something beautiful and functional. Not only that, but it makes the pieces on your home a little more personal and invested when the design comes from you. So, take an old chair or end table and give it new life with a fresh design.

2. Sculpting
Whittling is a skill that has origins that go back hundreds if not thousands of years and is a technique for sculpting wood. Whittling is done with a knife and is most commonly used to sculpt tools or small artifacts from scrap lumber or even twigs found in the woods. Make a spoon for your hiking or camping trip, craft a handle to insert a blade, or scrape away at a branch to make little trinkets and toys. I’ve seen whittling be used to make an entire custom chess set using a single knife! Your inner cave man is begging to carve up some wood so tap into your boy scout skills, grab a knife and start whittling!


Carving, much like whittling, is used for sculpting pieces of wood into various tools or art pieces. The biggest difference is the tools that are used and the size of the projects that are commonly done. Carving uses a set of very specific blades that are made for making different cuts and designs as you dig into the wood. Carving is also something that is often done to bigger pieces due to the change in the image of the wood instead of reducing it to a whole new figure. Carve a map into an end table, dig out a geometric flower in the top of a stool, or simply cut a name or phrase into a plaque for the man cave. No matter the application, shape your wood into whatever you envision.

3. Building
Organization is a wonderful thing in life. Having a schedule, keeping things in order and having structure makes for a less stressful and more productive home or work environment. Something that makes this organization possible is the various shelving and furniture that is used to compartmentalize the different items in our lives. Instead of paying hundreds of dollars for a custom unit, build it yourself and learn some new skills. Build a custom work bench, crates for a closet organizer, a creative bookshelf, or floating shelves to add some much-needed organization in your home.


Who loves playing games? Everyone, that’s who. There are so many different games out there that can be store bought with all the cheap plastic and brand names but what if you could say it was yours? Show up to a party with your DIY bags (or cornhole if you’re from some other part of the country other than Illinois) and impress the hell out of some friends with your craftsmanship. Better than that, if you are a beginner in your wood work endeavors, make a giant Jenga set where all you have to do is cut the wood to the same size! Expand your horizons a bit and try your hand at making Chinese checkers, shut the box, washers, or giant Yahtzee for all your wild parties. There can never be enough entertainment for your guests so make a game for them!

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