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When it comes to hobbies, having a supportive community around you can really help your passion flourish. Having someone to turn to when you have questions and being able to show your achievements to those that care can be very motivating.

Reddit’s woodworking community is an example of such a supportive network. They are there for each other when they come across challenges and don’t spare praise when their fellow members show off impressive creations. With an incredible 4.9 million members and counting, this community celebrates professionals and also roots for beginner hobbyists alike. Scroll down to find a selection of the most recent projects the members shared online and our conversation with two of the members.

#1

This Is A Cat Themed Wooden Chess Set That I Designed And Sculpted Myself

This Is A Cat Themed Wooden Chess Set That I Designed And Sculpted Myself

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One of the members of this community is Ryan Andrusky, a woodworker that specializes in bespoke boxes and the stunning art of marquetry. His journey to woodworking has been quite winded and full of passion for crafts. He began with origami, a hobby he picked up after tearing a ligament in his thumb when he was 19. His love for these intricate paper creations grew so much, he started making his own paper, which eventually led him down the rabbit hole of bookbinding. After an unsuccessful venture into a bookbinding business, he took a break from handiwork, but came back to it in 2018, when he was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. That’s when he dived into woodworking and never looked back. 

Back in 2020, during the pandemic, he stumbled upon French marquetry, the art of applying veneer pieces to form decorative patterns. He instantly became obsessed with learning the craft, acquired the necessary tools, and started practicing. Three years later, he attended the first ever Wonders of Wood: Inlay and Marquetry conference as a student scholarship winner. 

#2

My Complicated Looking Greenhouse Without Cutting Any Compound Angles

My Complicated Looking Greenhouse Without Cutting Any Compound Angles

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These days, he makes billiard and game tables for a small local business (check it out here) that he feels very lucky to be a part of. In his free time, he continues to master the art of marquetry, which is his hobby and passion. “What really drew me into marquetry is the complexity of it. I am often drawn to more difficult, almost magical crafts. <…> The challenge and the feeling of completing a project drives me to the next one, always with the thought of how can I improve or create something more outstanding.”

The most recent creation he is proud of is the “Bee on a ‘honeycomb’” comb, which sounds like a fascinating project that involved using horn material. “I used a technique that I have never seen used in marquetry before to create the bee's transparent-looking wings. I used steerhorn for the wings. When hot pressed and thinned down, they become very transparent. I created the background with the body of the bee first, inlaid those into my comb body. Then I inlaid the wings halfway through that layer, so that the background and body of the bee would still show through, creating a very convincing trompe l'oeil effect.”

#4

DIY Woodpecker Clock Made By Myself. Material Is 3mm Plywood

DIY Woodpecker Clock Made By Myself. Material Is 3mm Plywood

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#5

My Third Project Through My High School Class What Do You Think?

My Third Project Through My High School Class What Do You Think?

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Andrew Burke
Community Member
6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Wow! In HS all I got make was a crappy candy bowl and piece of wood with a notch in it which was supposed to be a boot jack.

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#6

Found Out They Were Making Micro Machines Again And Made A Birthday Present For My Youngest

Found Out They Were Making Micro Machines Again And Made A Birthday Present For My Youngest

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When asked to elaborate on marquetry, Andrusky shines with enthusiasm. He explains that there are three different ways of cutting wood when it comes to this craft. There’s stack cutting also known Boulle marquetry, double bevel or conical cutting, and piece by piece cutting. You can cut marquetry with a small knife that’s good for thinner commercial veneers or with a larger knife called a shoulder knife that’s able to cut through thicker veneer pieces. You can inlay marquetry directly into solid surfaces with chisels or router tools or even use laser technology to do it. But the technological advancements don’t entice him: “I am not interested in that kind of work at all, I do this because I want to do the cutting and have all the fun!”

#8

Bee On A "Honeycomb"

Bee On A "Honeycomb"

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Agne Steponaityte
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6 months ago (edited) DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

The tansparent wings were quite a feat to achieve! Read the interview with the wonderfully passionate creator Ryan Andrusky to find out how he did it

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#9

Hi Everybody, Here Is My Second Attempt To Create A Sculpture With Wood. My Father Taught Me

Hi Everybody, Here Is My Second Attempt To Create A Sculpture With Wood. My Father Taught Me

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Blue Bunny of Happiness
Community Member
6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Wow, if that’s their second, I can’t imagine how good their third will be!

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His process of creating a marquetry piece is quite remarkable and very involved. He starts with a design or tracing of the piece and preparing his veneers and other materials he’s using to inlay (metal, stone, bone, horn, etc.). He then cuts the pieces out in whatever method is best suited. When they’re done, the pieces are typically shaded with hot sand (acids or even simple charcoal crayons can also be used for that). After that, he glues it down to a substrate, sands and/or scrapes it, and finishes. He always sticks to traditional methods and uses protein glues (hide glues, fish glue, etc.) and finishes. “I make my pieces so that they can last for hundreds of years and still be reversed and fixed if need be.”

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#11

Wood Dolphin I Made And Decorated It In A Pattern Inspired By My Huichol Culture

Wood Dolphin I Made And Decorated It In A Pattern Inspired By My Huichol Culture

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#12

I Made A Spice Rack

I Made A Spice Rack

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These intricate processes not only yield impressive work, but make Andrusky very happy. “I love the challenge and the process of marquetry. It is not easy and succeeding provides me with ample amounts of dopamine! This craft has also really helped me in lowering my stress levels and seeing life in a different way. It has improved my Rheumatoid Arthritis to the point that I don't take medications for it anymore. Dealing with stress is vital in our daily living and marquetry provided that for me.”

#13

Layered Plywood Spiral Staircase (With White Oak Treads)

Layered Plywood Spiral Staircase (With White Oak Treads)

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#14

Walnut Mountain Shelf Made From My Carver

Walnut Mountain Shelf Made From My Carver

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Nina
Community Member
6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

How awesome would this look on a wall in your living room!

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Woodworker Hunter Locke had a way more straightforward path to his craft. His love for woodworking started when he got married and moved to his first unfurnished apartment. “As [my wife and I] scoured the internet for nice furniture, I realized that we probably didn’t have the budget. I’ve always been good with my hands, so I started to research building furniture, and realized that it sounded really enjoyable to me.” Now, at 25, he’s already 5 years into his woodworking journey and has his own custom furniture business (check it out here).

At this point in his career, he’s mostly working on practical items. “I really enjoy building 'stand-alone furniture' pieces like dining tables, chairs etc.” With the help of traditional woodworking methods, he designs pieces that are meant to last for generations. However, Locke is also intrigued by more decorative pieces. “I have a couple of light fixture designs in my head.”

#16

My Wife Said She Could Never Tell If I Was On A Call In Our Home Office

My Wife Said She Could Never Tell If I Was On A Call In Our Home Office

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#17

Husband Bought 32 Old Windows And Is Using Them To Build Us A Greenhouse. Still Needs A Roof But Looks So Cool

Husband Bought 32 Old Windows And Is Using Them To Build Us A Greenhouse. Still Needs A Roof But Looks So Cool

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When it comes to his favorite pieces he’s made so far, a recent creation he loves is a bar cabinet shaped like a robot that he made as a wedding gift for his cousin. “She had sent me a reference image over a year ago that I had saved with the intention of building as their wedding gift. The time came, and I was able to build my own take on the piece. It’s very different from what I normally build, but it was a fun challenge! And I think it turned out pretty great."

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#19

My Screen Porch I Built In 2020

My Screen Porch I Built In 2020

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#21

Made A Wall Ruler To Track My Grandchildren’s Growth

Made A Wall Ruler To Track My Grandchildren’s Growth

Nothing complicated but I’m already getting requests to make more. So far only one of them can even stand up so I’m way ahead of schedule. Simple but fun, gives me joy!

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Kimbowa
Community Member
6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This looks so great and is a brilliant idea! I hope that artfully you still get to mark their growth with the little lines!

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Locke is also excited about all the learning possibilities that woodworking offers. “I am currently very intrigued and excited to get into more bent lamination.” The process of making bent lamination involves cutting a board lengthwise into thin strips so they are able to bend easily. Then, you glue and clamp them back in order and place it in a special bending form that allows it to bend into a certain shape. Once the glue cures, you have yourself a bent board. “This is something I’m using for dining chair seat backs, but I want to start using it in more places.”

#22

My First Project

My First Project

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#23

Here's An End Grain Cutting Board I Made. It's My First Try At This Design. There Were A Few Issues But The Next Batch Will Be Better. Wenge, African Mahogany And Hard Maple

Here's An End Grain Cutting Board I Made. It's My First Try At This Design. There Were A Few Issues But The Next Batch Will Be Better. Wenge, African Mahogany And Hard Maple

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Dee Rutherford
Community Member
6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

This would not be a cutting board in my house, it would be displayed in a special place. Awesome.

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#24

A Small Gang Of Strange Birds In My Workshop. Kinda Noisy And Keep Demanding Fish

A Small Gang Of Strange Birds In My Workshop. Kinda Noisy And Keep Demanding Fish

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Looking into the future, Locke has big plans ahead. He hopes to continue growing his signature collection and sell more and more of his pieces. “Eventually, I want to run a small-scale production shop that works solely on my designs, and I can still take on an occasional custom piece.”

#25

My Wood Sculpture 'Hildr'. Made From Walnut Timber And Limewood

My Wood Sculpture 'Hildr'. Made From Walnut Timber And Limewood

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#26

My First Chair, Took Me 10 Months To Finish (Elm)

My First Chair, Took Me 10 Months To Finish (Elm)

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BetterBitterButter
Community Member
6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Beautiful! Reminds me of an old chair in our house when I was a child.

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#27

I Carved This Giant Monarch Butterfly From Maple Wood!

I Carved This Giant Monarch Butterfly From Maple Wood!

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Aqsa Azam
Community Member
6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

OH MY GOD. This looks absolutely majestic! How are people so talented!

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Finding a craft that you can put all your love into is quite magical and lifechanging. Having a community around to support that love only makes it more precious. The redditors that found their place in the woodworking community can attest to that. If you wish to see more of their impressive works, check out the posts here and here.

#28

Big Marquetry Project I Finished Today

Big Marquetry Project I Finished Today

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Lyop
Community Member
6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Why doe it look like its been photoshopped, or is that the effect its supposed to give off?

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#29

When You Want To Carry A 17’ Kayak Inside A 6’ Wide Teardrop Camper

When You Want To Carry A 17’ Kayak Inside A 6’ Wide Teardrop Camper

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#31

Finished My First Piece Of Furniture Ever! Solid Cherry And Finished With Danish Oil

Finished My First Piece Of Furniture Ever! Solid Cherry And Finished With Danish Oil

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#32

I Made A Tissue Box From Some Scraps Of Walnut And Cherry

I Made A Tissue Box From Some Scraps Of Walnut And Cherry

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#33

I Made A Little Person Very Happy Today

I Made A Little Person Very Happy Today

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#34

I Made 60 River Coasters For My Upcoming Wedding

I Made 60 River Coasters For My Upcoming Wedding

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#35

Bought An Entire Walnut Tree And Built A Custom Wine Room With It

Bought An Entire Walnut Tree And Built A Custom Wine Room With It

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#37

My Marshall Amp Dresser

My Marshall Amp Dresser

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Mixed Reality Portal
Community Member
6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

Hehe it needs throwing down the stairs and off a stage a few times to give it that authentic rock 'n roll look 😂 Great work!

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#38

Dragon Priest Staves From Skyrim I Crafted Out Of Wood. They Are 140cm Tall

Dragon Priest Staves From Skyrim I Crafted Out Of Wood. They Are 140cm Tall

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#40

Made This From A Tree That Was In My Front Yard

Made This From A Tree That Was In My Front Yard

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PandaGoPanda
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6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

And your dog is gazing forlornly at where his favourite tree used to be …

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#41

Only My Second Cabinet Ever, And It Had To Be Massive 28 Foot Wall Unit For The Shop I Work At

Only My Second Cabinet Ever, And It Had To Be Massive 28 Foot Wall Unit For The Shop I Work At

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#44

It’s Not Perfect But $35 For All The Materials Beats Buying A New Door. Damn Dog Won’t Keep Me From Getting That Security Deposit Back

It’s Not Perfect But $35 For All The Materials Beats Buying A New Door. Damn Dog Won’t Keep Me From Getting That Security Deposit Back

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#45

Rate My Skills For My First Project

Rate My Skills For My First Project

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#47

Set Of Media Cabinets I Made - A Mix Of Solid And Veneered Walnut

Set Of Media Cabinets I Made - A Mix Of Solid And Veneered Walnut

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#48

Walnut Side Table With Epoxy. LED Light Strip Underneath For Lighting Effect

Walnut Side Table With Epoxy. LED Light Strip Underneath For Lighting Effect

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Lemme get the lemons
Community Member
6 months ago DotsCreated by potrace 1.15, written by Peter Selinger 2001-2017

I'm pretty sure it isn't, but this looks like diamond ore, or a skulk block from Minecraft

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#49

I Built A French Cleat Digital Sandpaper Sorter That Keeps All Of My Orbital & Mouse Sanding Pads Organized

I Built A French Cleat Digital Sandpaper Sorter That Keeps All Of My Orbital & Mouse Sanding Pads Organized

I didn't want to have written labels so I used cheap decade counters to denote the grit of each shelf of sanding pads. Now I just punch in grit value whenever I resupply pad types!

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#50

I Made A Millennium Falcon Bed For My Daughter

I Made A Millennium Falcon Bed For My Daughter

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Note: this post originally had 60 images. It’s been shortened to the top 50 images based on user votes.