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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.

Chris Schwarz
Arts & Mysteries RSS FeedRead Adam’s Blog »

Arts & Mysteries with Adam Cherubini

Arts & Mysteries is one of our most-read columns in Popular Woodworking Magazine. Whether you sympathize with Adam Cherubini’s approach to working wood entirely with hand tools or think he’s simply a glutton for punishment, I think we all can agree on one thing: Adam’s column is never boring.

Joshua Klein, a furniture maker and conservator based in Brooklin, Maine, visits the Furniture Study to demonstrate woodturning techniques used in 17th- and 18th-century furniture making, using a traditional foot-powered treadle lathe.

Dawks at the Yale Furniture Study

A few weeks ago I was invited by the Yale University Art Gallery to do a presentation on colonial wood turning. The event took place at their legendary Furniture Study in lieu of their weekly public tour. During the presentation, I highlighted the differences between the work of the cabinetmaker and the work of...


Boarded Scandinavian Tool Chest – Too Cool

It takes a special tool chest to get me to sit up straight – I’ve spent the last six or seven years of my life researching and writing about tool chests. But this one, presumably Swedish, is fantastic. It was recently sold on this auction site for an astonishing sum. While the composition of...


Smoothing Milk Paint & Other Rough Surfaces

If your painted finish feels a little rough, you need to go to the liquor store. OK, that doesn’t make sense, so let’s back up a couple weeks when I was teaching a bunch of young woodworkers how to build a tool chest by hand at the Marc Adams School of Woodworking. After building...


What I Don’t Know About Veneering

I’ve been woodworking for a little over thirty-five years (I was barely out of diapers…I swear!), and in all that time I’ve done just enough veneering to know that there is a lot more about veneering that I don’t know. It’s one of those specialty woodworking areas that has it’s own set of tools, expectations and...

Before: This is how I was cutting sliding dovetails and rabbets by hand.

A Tip for Handsawing Rabbets & Sliding Dovetails

I’ve been cutting a lot of large-scale sliding dovetails and rabbets lately. And when these housed joints get to a certain size (think of a dovetail socket that is 4” wide and 30” long) it’s much more efficient to saw out the walls by hand. When I need the rabbets or sliding dovetails to...

Workbench Design

Workbench Review: A Classic Joiner’s Bench

As always I’m very grateful to anyone who makes the time to comment on my postings here, and I do my best to respond in a helpful manner. On the back of my last write up on the wooden try squares, Shawn was kind enough to ask a question about my workbench and in...

James Hamilton

5 Tips for Your Homemade Workshop

James Hamilton, also known as Stumpy Nubs to his throng of online fans, is an advocate for constantly finding new and innovative ways to streamline workflow in the shop. Whenever a problem arises or something seems like it should be easier he frantically eats a donut and then sets his mind to finding a solution...