Learn to carve—or improve your wood carving skills 
with step-by-step tutorials

We remove the guesswork so you can focus
on perfecting your carving.

Whether you’re new to wood carving—or you’ve been carving for a while—we know how important it is to “get a project right” and complete a job “well done” that you can be proud of.

When we started carving, we noticed that many tutorials require the use of a band saw, numerous gouges (or other tools), and are missing crucial steps.  Our step-by-step tutorials feature free, full-color patterns and give you the option of creating a carving with—or without—a band saw.  

The majority of our tutorials are created with just a knife or two, but we often also suggest where other tools can be used.  This makes our wood carving tutorials perfect for both beginners and more experienced wood carvers.  

Say goodbye to guessing

Trying to figure a project out without clear directions is downright frustrating.  Another let down is the lack of pictures of a work-in-progress from different angles.  

Our comprehensive tutorials provide easy-to-follow photos and you never have to guess how your carving should look from start to finish. 

Latest tutorial!

Valentine hearts wood carving tutorial polaroid

Free painting guides too

Our handy painting guides include specific acrylic paint colors and whether we use a wash (diluted with water) or not. 

This allows you to easily replicate any colors that you like with any of our carving and whittling projects.  

Also, check out our comprehensive page on painting a wood carving.

Helping you improve your carving

The best way to improve your carving is to practice, practice, and practice! 

Every time you carve you will learn something new about the ways you can manipulate wood to get the shapes you desire. 

Check out our sections on wood carving caricatures,  flat plane carving, and how to whittle wood for helpful tips, new techniques, and easy-to-follow tutorials.  

Also check out our best wood carving knives and best wood carving tools pages to learn what we love, use and highly recommend. We've done a lot of trial and error to put these favorites together! 

While you're here, join our free Covered in Chips Club to receive a free gift and to get tips that are exclusive to our club members.  

”Thank you for your newsletter and website. I do the newsletter for Montana State Woodcarvers and am always looking for information to put in the newsletter.” EM

Why do many of our tutorials use small wood carving blocks?

  • We want to be able to design, carve, and create new tutorials for you as fast as we can.
  • We love the simplicity of using a small block and a knife or two.  
  • Carving small blocks makes it easy to carve on the go where you work, play, or travel.
  • Practicing on small blocks can help you enhance your wood carving skills for much larger projects.
  • You can get a lot more carvings for the money that you spend on wood. 
  • There is less wood to remove, which preserves the health (and comfort) of your hands.  
  • Small projects don't take up a tremendous amount of time so you will never get bored!
  • Small blocks don’t take up too much room, giving you more room to display your carvings.  
  • It’s super fun to see how much detail you can pack into a small carving ( a lot!).
  • It is a great starting point if you want to eventually design your own wood carving projects.

Of course, you can always easily double (or triple) the dimensions of any of our patterns to create a larger carving. 

Making wood carving addictively fun

There are so many benefits of wood carving that we want to help you experience, including: 

  • Relaxing, unwinding, and getting away from daily stresses.
  • Unleashing your creativity.
  • Learning new skills that will help make you a better carver.
  • Challenging yourself to work on more advanced projects, or perhaps designing your own.
  • Making one-of-a-kind gifts that will be treasured by everyone.
  • Sharing this amazing hobby with your children, other family members, or friends.
  •  Showing off your wonderful creations to others. Please send us your pictures! 

Stick with it

Persistence is just as important as practicing. 

If your mindset is to become a great carver you will be! 

If you are new to carving, check out our how to hand carve wood section that includes a beginner's guide to wood carving, the basic wood carving cuts that you will need, and much more.

Helping you enjoy the process

It’s easy to get lost in a wood carving and drive yourself to finish quickly. 

Try to get in the habit of slowing the process down and taking frequent breaks. 

Your hands will stay fresh and you may come back with a different point of view.

Our goal is to teach you to trust the process. When you do, everything will fall into place. 

Encouraging you to learn from mistakes 

We will help you see that every mistake is a learning opportunity.  

Never give up!

Simply look at your creation and see what new direction you can take.  

Don't like something? Carve it off and start again. You may end up with an even better carving.

We will also help you learn how to think a carving through, which can help you come up with cool designs on your own.  

Wood spoon carvingAvoid common mistakes

Celebrating your progress

We strongly suggest that you hold on to all your carvings.

It will help you see where you started and how far you have progressed. 

In a short time, you will be amazed at the improvement. 

Early carving examplesSome of our early carvings

Indulging your obsession 

We love collecting great knives and other carving tools and we’re happy to share our honest opinions with you

What you will not find on our website is lots of spammy product suggestions.

We endorse something because we have used it ourselves—and absolutely love it—or we know someone we respect who recommends it.

Just to let you know… We do participate in the Amazon and Focuser Carving affiliates program. We make a few pennies if you purchase products we recommend—at no cost to you.

Thanks for your support! 

Let’s get carving together

Grab some wood, a super sharp knife, and let those chips fly!  

We hope you will share your creations with us. We really want to see your successes. 

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