Top 8 Sources of Popular Woodworking Projects & Plans

January 16, 2015

woodworking plan and pencil

Most of us know that woodworking is fun and exciting.

When you have a weekend to spare, there is a lot you can do that doesn’t involve sitting around the house.

You can build sheds, decks, treehouses or dozens of other awesome items that will be a fully functioning part of your life.

Sources you will find in this post:

  1. Jay Custom Creations (free)
  2. Woodworking for Mere Mortals (free)
  3. Min Wax (free)
  4. Anna White (free)
  5. Wood Logger (free)
  6. Instructables (free)
  7. The Winfield Collection
  8. Plans Now

While some people can draw up their own plans, it takes a lot of experience and know-how to reach this level of professional woodworking. Even advanced woodworkers have been known to look for projects and schemes that can help them go from idea to reality.

Let’s look at the 8 best sources for plans of all kinds. We will start with the 6 free ones first before moving into the in-depth, paid-for schemes and instructions that are amazing, advanced and well worth every penny.

8 Best Sources of Woodworking Plans You Need to See

1. Jay Custom Creations (Free)

image of Jays Custom Creations

Jay Custom Creations is a great place to begin with that offers around 52 free woodworking projects. These are very detailed and they are presented in article format full of images and videos. The following are just a few of the schemes that are covered (keep in mind most are benches or tables):

  • Picnic tables
  • Porch swing
  • Drill press table
  • Dog house

  • Benches
  • Chests
  • Dining chairs
  • Bed bunks

What I really like about these plans is that Jay provides you with everything to get started. Not only is the finished product pictured, but shopping lists are provided so you know exactly what to buy when going to the store.

yellow projects button

You will also find basic schemes for trash cans, tool holders and various other items. As you go through the plans, you will see that there are computerized pictures that show you what you should be doing all along the way.

Keep in mind: Jay provides basic projects and instructions that even the novice woodworker will be able to learn from with ease.

2. Woodworking for Mere Mortals (Free)

image of For Mere Mortals website

A wacky website with awesome plans (around 94). These are functional projects, such as snack tables, footsteps, planters, tool boxes and more. These are simple in nature and can be used for virtually anything around the home. A few of the many schemes you can find are:

  • Spice rack
  • Snack tables
  • Gardening tool box

  • Planters
  • Drums
  • Storage unit

The one aspect of these plans that I truly like are the PDF and video options. The PDF leaves a lot to be desired and is a basic diagram of sorts, but the videos go through the entire project so you can see exactly how the final product was made.

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There are also SketchUp files included (download SketchUp files viewer here first), which have proven to be very helpful. These are items that are able to be used for a variety of regular household needs.

Keep in mind: While you won’t find benches or sheds, you will find a bunch of other awesome projects that are relatively easy to put together.

3. Min Wax (Free)

image of MinWax site

Min Wax is one of my personal favorite sites. While I haven’t built a lot of the items listed, they are the perfect resource for this list. Let’s get started with the great possibilities that the site has to offer starting with their categories. The entire site is broken into the following categories that all together have around 52 free plans to follow:

  • Accessories
  • Cabinets & chests
  • Chairs & benches
  • Desks

  • Media organizers
  • Shelving
  • Tables
  • Toys

This is a lot of categories, and it gets even better. At the bottom of the page, you will find the following skill level choices: Beginner, intermediate & advanced.

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The instructions are presented in PDF format and are very easy to follow. The parts needed are labeled, so you know everything you need to do in a concise manner.

Keep in mind: This is more like an instruction manual you would find when putting together furniture from the store and includes details on how to make every piece needed for assembly.

4. Ana White (Free)

the Ana White homepage

Ana White is a great resource for hundreds of woodworking projects (around 1111). This resource is massive, and you can search from newest, popular or items specifically made by Ana herself. A few of the great items you will find are:

  • Picnic tables
  • Bookshelves
  • Carts
  • Flower holders
  • Pergola projects

  • Wooden stairs
  • Faux mantle
  • Jewelry box
  • Secretary cabinets
  • Open drawer base

You can also refine your search by skill level, project type, room and various other ways.

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These are easy to follow, but they are often listed on other websites. You will also be able to find a lot of accompanying videos that are made in a how-to format when the item has been made by Ana.

Keep in mind: This is a great resource for all of your needs, and Ana is bound to have something related to your next project listed on the site.

5. Wood Logger (Free)

projects from Woodlogger

Wood Logger has 7 pages (36 projects) of great products listed with instructions on how to make them all. This is a great resource for the novice to intermediate woodworker and you will also find a few experienced schemes to work with.

This site is more of a blog style, so you will be able to find items by going through pages rather than categorization. A few of the neat projects found are:

  • Fish-shaped treasure box
  • Bird feeds
  • Wood crates
  • Wine bottle opener

  • Benches
  • Twin bed
  • Workbench with tables
  • Battery organizer

yellow projects button

The author does a good job with showing you where he found the plans, and then shows you how he created the end product step-by-step. There are pictures to go with every single step.

Keep in mind: You can also follow the video provided that shows you everything from start to finish.

6. Instructables (Free)

instructables woodworking projects

A terrific site for beginners. Instructables provides you with 50 beginner woodworking plans to create virtually every beginner item in the book. There are also quirky projects listed, such as:

  • Wooden spoons
  • Beer mugs
  • Boomerangs
  • Cigar box ukulele
  • Bows & arrows

  • Candle holders
  • Jelly beans dispensers
  • Tobacco pipes
  • Firewood racks
  • Boomerangs

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You will also find picnic tables, bookshelves and more within the site’s collection.

Keep in mind: The instructions are easy to follow and there is usually a materials list to help you get started.

7. The Winfield Collection

projects from The Winfield Collection

If you want to go beyond the basics, you will need to pay a premium. The Winfield Collection has affordable prices and hundreds of the most beautiful designs and kits you will ever see. There is virtually everything you could ever want to build in this collection, including:

  • Sheds
  • Toys
  • Furniture
  • Holiday items
  • Indoor items

  • Bird projects
  • Picnic tables
  • Adirondacks
  • Dog houses
  • Gazebos

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You can even see how to make huge wooden trains for kids, flower boxes with wheels to emulate old carriages and more. The schemes are also very affordable.

Keep in mind: From beginner to advanced projects, you will be able to find it in this collection.

8. Plans Now

image of Plans Now website

The final entry on our list. Plans Now shows you in hundreds of available schemes and instructions how to build professional looking items. This is meant more for the professional or perfectionist that wants to build their own timeless classics. There are a few sections to choose from:

  • Workshop
  • Furniture
  • Outdoor
  • Home improvement

You will learn how to build your own bedroom set, entertainment centers and even how to build your very own cabinets that you can put in your kitchen.

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The best part is that you will find most plans to be very affordable, and they include: full-color photos, tips and techniques, and of course, a how-to guide on creating your masterpiece.

Keep in mind: All schemes can be downloaded right in PDF format for quick, easy access.

  • Lyn Pattenson

    woodworking plans can be downloaded for free online, I have always been an advocate of buying them instead. One reason is because free plans aren’t easy to find in the first place. You will have to spend a good deal of time browsing before you come across some. Second, free plans are free for a reason; they are not usually the best plans. However, this is not always the case, as you can find some great plans for free. When you buy woodworking plans from a reputable place, you can be sure that quality of plans is not an issue. You can trust their accuracy and have confidence in them while building out your project.

  • Kaka

    Free download teds woodworking plan in torrent file (2.94 GB)