Woodworking Blog

Techniques and Insights Behind the Art of Fine Woodworking

Team Building on Veterans Day

This year we decided to celebrate Veterans Day with a little bit of fun and some old fashioned elbow grease.

After our weekly safety meeting and some hot coffee, the entire company got together to sweep up some saw dust, fix the tools in need of repair and discussed the finer points of a good chip shot.

We were also able to test our skills behind some beautiful old wooden bows after a nice catered lunch.


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While most of us were not the marksman that we claimed to be, we did successfully manage to keep all our stray arrows within our confined safety area.

Saving a Garage built in the early 1900’s

We are remodeling a home in an older Palo Alto neighborhood and our clients asked us to either build them a new garage or repair the existing one. The old garage was in bad shape. It was falling down and the front was leaning over to one side by 4″.  It looked like it was salvageable, the roofing was passable and the framing was beautiful old growth rough sawn fir, full dimension lumber that is no longer available these days, if it were you would use it to build something beautiful, not a garage!

Teak Table with Copper Legs – made from scraps

This is a simple folding table made from some left-over Teak and a few copper scraps.

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Leftover copper + Leftover teak = Beautiful folding table

Florin Ardel

How to build your own wood steamer/bender

We have had several projects that require the wood to be steamed and bent, so a while back I decided to make a wood steamer to increase the number of jobs that we were capable of accomplishing. Since then I have had several requests for a how to of sorts to list the steps, so here you go 🙂

It’s actually very simple, just requires the following parts:

1  Wall paper steamer Available at any Home Depot

1  4 ft or 8 ft length of 4″ or 6″ PVC  with screw on ends

Getting out of the wind – A Backyard Oasis



A client told me that she loved where she lives but, In San Carlos, even when the sun is shining, it can be cold and windy in the backyard.

She and her husband had lived in their home for many years however they were never inspired to do anything with the back yard, until now.

The yard was 75% covered with a concrete patio made up old exposed  aggregate slabs that had been heaved up by tree roots and all of the wooden header boards in between them had long since rotted away.

Craftsman Style Painted Kitchen Cabinets

Custom Built Kitchen Cabinets
Craftsman Style Kitchen Cabinets

Craftsman style kitchen cabinets will never go out of style . Simple and functional without un-needed ornamentation.

This kitchen was constructed of Maple and then painted to match the clients interior. It features Shaker doors on hidden hinges, our standard pre-finished maple interiors, Premium Dovetailed solid maple drawers on Blum Tandem, full extension, under-mount, soft-close drawer slides. This kitchen features a custom hood over the range designed with the client to meet their needs. This kitchen also has many extras like two custom double lazy susan cabinets in the corners to maximize storage, a large pantry with 5 roll-outs for easy access, and a unique breakfast nook area with extra seating . For more pictures of this project go to our custom Kitchen photo gallery at: Bay Area Kitchens

I Highly Recommend Michael

“I highly recommend Michael and his folks at Fine Woodworking without reservation for any project, large or small. I am moving out of the area. My only wish is that I could take him with me for my next house!” — Deb K.

Wine Cabinet that slips into the wall

A Wine Cabinet Built by MMFWW
Custom Built Wine Cabinet

Recently completed installation of a simple wine storage cabinet, custom made to fit into an existing alcove in the wall. Client did not want a traditional latticework wine rack so we designed some shelves that were more to her liking and added a few doors and a drawer to maximize storage. The look on her face when we delivered the cabinet and completed the install was priceless, hope you like it too 🙂