My Very First Woodworking Project

After many months of waiting and watching them work, the other editors finally turned me loose in the shop last week to tackle my first-ever woodworking project: a simple bookshelf. Well, “turned me loose” is a strong phrase – I had quite a bit of coaching using the router to cut rabbets, and wielding my new block plane (a gift from Popular Woodworking contributor Carl Bilderback) to flush the edges.

Somehow I managed to avoid nailing my hand to a board, and sans a few a kinks in the building process, I’m pretty darn proud of how it turned out. In fact, maybe I’ll celebrate by calling it an on-the-ground wine rack instead – reds on the left side, whites on the right and glasses on the shelf in the middle.

The piece will be featured in the December issue’s I Can Do That column, so keep an eye out. And while you’re at it, let me know what you think of my design in the comments.

– Tom Nunlist

6 thoughts on “My Very First Woodworking Project

  1. njwoodworker

    Tom, I like the design.
    I would love to build a large bookcase like that.
    However, in my opinion, the horizontal piece in the top square is not needed. Books can be stacked at a 45 degree angle and I like the look.
    Good luck on future projects!

  2. Lars

    Nicely done. I too initially thought it was a wine rack and believe it would make an excellent one. Stack another on top and you’ll have the best of both worlds.

  3. Moontoad

    Very nice, Tom. You’re on your way, though you can’t call yourself a woodworker until you’ve bought your first (too expensive) hand tool. We all drink the koolaid eventually.
    Keep us posted on your journey!

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