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PWM Shop Blog

Formerly called the Editors’ Blog, these articles offer hands-on advice, woodworking tips and techniques from the editors and contributing editors of Popular Woodworking Magazine

This blog includes free videos, tool reviews we didn’t have room for in the printed magazine and tidbits of the day-to-day life here at the magazine and in the world of woodworking.

Chris Schwarz
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Chris Schwarz Blog

Contributing editor Christopher Schwarz is a long-time amateur woodworker and professional journalist. He built his first workbench at age 8 and spent weekends helping his father build two houses on the family’s farm outside Hackett, Ark.— using mostly hand tools. Despite his early experience on the farm, Chris remains a hand-tool enthusiast.

Chris’s blog focuses mostly on hand tools and hand work. Chris also writes short tool reviews, book reviews and generally gets the inside scoop on new hand tool introductions before other blogs.

Bob flexner
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Flexner on Finishing Blog

Bob Flexner is a contributing editor to Popular Woodworking and the author of woodworking finishing books, including “Flexner on Finishing,” “Understanding Wood Finishing,” and “Wood Finishing 101,” available at ShopWoodworking.com. Bob is probably best known for defining the products used in wood finishing and organizing them into categories that make them easily understandable.


Popular Woodworking Magazine: October 2016

The October issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine just mailed to subscribers, and is now available in our online store. While it’s difficult for me to pick a favorite article from a given issue (that’s akin to picking my favorite cat!), it’s made a bit easier this time by circumstance. I’m in the midst of...

Applying an oil finish to a deck and not wiping off the excess will leave the wood spotty, gloss and dull

Deck Stain Followed by Oil

My brother is remodeling his house, which is great for my blog because he’s a magnet for finish problems. Then he calls me. Here’s the latest: He hired a paint contractor to recoat his deck, which was worn in spots. The contractor pressure washed, let the deck dry, then brushed on a deck stain....


Working Without a Cambered Iron

The cutters in my bench planes all have cambered irons. The jack has the most – a 10” radius curve – followed by the much slighter curves of my jointer and smoothing planes. The curves do two things: They prevent the corners of the iron from digging into the work and creating “plane tracks,”...

Woodworking in America

Woodworking in America: An Interview with Yoav Liberman

Yoav Liberman’s work has been featured in several woodworking books – most recently in “Robin Wood’s CORES Recycled,” and in American Woodworker and Woodwork Magazine. He’s also a regular contributor to the PWM Shop Blog. Yoav teaches woodworking at the Rudolf Steiner School in Manhattan, frequently guest teaches in craft schools across the country,...


Woodworking In America: An Interview with Nancy Hiller

Nancy R. Hiller earned a City & Guilds of London certificate in furniture making in 1980. She’s been a professional designer and cabinetmaker ever since and specializes in period-authentic work. Her work has appeared in Fine Woodworking, Fine Homebuilding, Popular Woodworking Magazine, Old-House Journal, American Bungalow and many other publications. Hiller took few moments to speak to us about her...


Use Sandwich Construction to Create Case Panels

Create a thick, solid look for your cabinetry with a laminated plywood approach. This excerpt from “How to Build Bookcases and Bookshelves” covers a plywood sandwich construction technique that will give you the look of heavy solid panels for your furniture projects. Sandwich construction uses readily available thicknesses of plywood to create thicker panels....

bunch of hammers

Build Furniture with a Hammer

Far from a crude implement, a good hammer is a wonder of subtlety and an asset for many kinds of joinery. by Christopher Schwarz (Excerpted from the Spring 2006 issue of Woodworking Magazine) Most woodworkers, and woodworking publications, regard the hammer as a crude implement. Everyone has a hammer or two on the wall,...

Furniture Fundamentals

Furniture Fundamentals

When I joined the woodworking team a couple of years ago I found myself thumbing through a couple of our newest books at the time to get the lay of the land. Those two books,“Chairs & Benches” and “Tables,” are part of our Furniture Fundamentals series and teach you how to build some of the most commonly...