We’ve talked about ideal beginner woodworking projects. We’ve given you some ideas for advanced woodworkers, too. Now it’s time to meet in the middle with some wood project suggestions at a medium level of difficulty.
Grab your tools and some wood, put them on your workbench, and get ready to make some cool stuff while growing your woodworking skills with these 10 awesome intermediate woodworking projects with tutorials.
1. Magazine Rack
Do people read paper magazines anymore? Even if not, we bet you’ll still find plenty of paper around your living room or bathroom that will look better straightened up in a handsome, handy magazine rack.
But don’t buy a shoddy version at a retail store. Seize the opportunity to create a rack you can be proud of. This DIY project is a great way to work on joinery skills, as well as angle and taper cuts.
You can get this thing done in a day. You’ll need your saw, sanding equipment, wood glue, and clamps for the bulk of the work.
2. Wood Wagon
A good ol’ wood wagon is the stuff of nostalgia. It’s also mighty practical for hauling kids and toys around the neighborhood.
A metal one will rust. A plastic one is tacky. So build a sturdy, attractive wood wagon yourself.
You’ll need a day’s time, plus a miter saw and a jigsaw for cuts. Paint or stain to protect from the elements. With some patience, you’ll end up with a mid-century wagon the whole family will love.
3. A-Frame Toolbox
Not every job can be done at your workbench, and it might not exactly be home decor, but nothing says “I love woodworking” like carrying around your files, saws, and other tools in a classic A-frame wood toolbox.
An advancing woodworker like you would never stoop to buy such a piece online when you can DIY it. Especially not when you can make one fairly easily in a few hours on your own with a 2×4 and a wooden dowel. You’ll be using your miter again, and be sure to have your framing square close by.
4. Dog Ramp
How can you show your love for your aging furry friend? By building a DIY dog ramp for those spots they can’t climb to anymore, that’s how. To make sure you get one that matches your specific needs, it’s best to make one yourself.
This project involves a fair amount of materials and some precise angles. But it’s otherwise straightforward. And with some dogged determination, you can get it done in a weekend. Tools include a jigsaw and a good drill with bits. Your pooch will offer many wags and licks of thanks!
5. Adirondack Chair
There’s something just plain wrong about an Adirondack chair made of plastic. So please don’t go that route. With some intermediate carpentry skills, you can make one that’s way nicer and longer lasting.
You’ll be doing a lot of angle cuts with your miter saw. Consistency and precision are essential. But you can still pull off this project in just a few hours. Then, if the weather’s right, sit back and relax on your new creation out in the yard.
6. Shoe Organizer
Got one of those “shoes off inside” households? Good for you. It keeps your floors cleaner, and it’s more comfortable. The only issue is where to put all those shoes everyone takes off at the door.
The answer: Slide them into a nice shoe rack in your entryway.
But first, you’ll need to build it. The good news is that, with some moderate DIY woodworking skills and a little more than half a day, you can make one that also serves as a shoe-removal bench, to boot (so to speak).
Choose some wood that’s strong yet easy to work. You’ll be tackling dado and rabbet cuts with some serious miter and table saw work.
7. Mancala Board
What’s mancala? It’s an ancient strategy game with marbles for two players. Anybody can learn it with a step-by-step tutorial, and it only takes about 15 minutes to play.
Plus, the board you need to get into the game is an easy woodworking project you can pull off in just a couple of hours. The biggest challenge is lining up the holes nice and even. Grab whatever scrap wood you like, whether it’s from a pallet or reclaimed wood from an old cutting board, get your jigsaw and a router, and get going!
8. Stacking Totes
Here’s an easy DIY project that can make a big impact on organization in your home.
Build simple stacking totes in a variety of sizes to help tidy up toys, decorations, small appliances, and all the other stuff that adds clutter.
Aside from a few rounded edges, including the handles, the work should be simple and fast. By the way, you can upsize and add a few features to this concept to create all kinds of basic box shapes, like a doghouse or a playhouse.
9. Storage Cabinet
Let’s continue with the organization theme but add in some attractive aesthetics with this project idea.
A wall storage cabinet might seem a lot more complex than the totes. But with the right tools and care, you can cut and assemble a piece like this in half a day. The right tools include a decent table saw with a set of dado blades—the kind that cuts wider grooves for interlocking joints.
This one’s another project you can upsize or downsize to fit different needs, from a large wardrobe for your bedroom to a small tabletop cabinet for spices. And since this is such a common DIY project, you’ll have no problem finding a set of woodworking plans that precisely fits your needs.
10. Floating Shelves
Let’s finish things off with a smart decorative project regardless of whether you need a new bookshelf or you need somewhere to display your sweet snowglobe collection. It’s a lot easier than it might look.
For floating shelves, you hide the mounting hardware—a basic wooden bracket/cleat—inside the shelf. And the shelf is really just a long, narrow box.
You’ll need your miter saw for cuts, and a pocket hole jig is ideal for disguising your screws. And you’ll only need a few hours before you’re proudly displaying whatever keepsakes you enjoy on your new shelves!
What You’ll Need to Do These Projects
As you might have noticed reading through our list, a few workhorse power tools come into play again and again:
- Miter saw
- Table saw
- Circular saw
The more projects you take on as you grow your skills and motivation, the greater variety of tools you might want at hand. Like a belt sander and basic hand tools, for example. Here are some other suggestions for cool woodworking tools.
Meanwhile, as you add this higher-power equipment, consider buying machines that use three-phase power for greater durability and torque. The question is how to run this equipment if you don’t already have three-phase electricity service in your shop.
The answer: get a rotary three-phase converter.
USA-made American Rotary phase converters can deliver balanced 3-phase power for everything in your shop—3-phase and single-phase equipment included. Explore American Rotary phase converters for woodworking here. And if you have questions, just let us know!