Craft Quotes: Inspiring for Woodworking Artisans And Enthusiasts

Craft Quotes: Inspiring for Woodworking Artisans And Enthusiasts

Woodworking requires many tools, but the most important tool of them all is the one you have in between your ears. Successful woodworking is mainly dependent on your ability to plan out a project, determine the tools and materials you will need, and then execute the project without making any major woodwork mistakes.

So, if you are just getting started in woodworking or you are an accomplished craftsman, you might find inspiration in our list of woodworking quotes. Here are some quotes from some of the most accomplished craftsmen in history.

If your grandad was a carpenter or you spent a day with dad in his workshop, they might have uttered these funny quotes or sayings. Perhaps as a woodworker or DIY enthusiast, mum asked dad to do some woodwork, but he needs this tool or that.

Quotes About Woodworking

woodworking craft quote

“The life so short, the craft so long to learn.”


“Show us a man who never makes a mistake and we will show a man who never makes anything. The capacity for occasional blundering is inseparable from the capacity to bring things to pass.”

Herman Lincoln Wayland (1830-1898)

“Know safety, no injury. No safety, know injury.”


“In a rough way the short story writer is to the novelist as a cabinetmaker is to a house carpenter.”

Annie Proulx

“There is no scrap wood, just pieces not yet used.”


“Well, my standard formula was the better work you do, the more chance that you’ll starve.”

James Krenov

“Hand-craft signifies cunning, or sleight, or Craft of the Hand, which cannot be taught by Words, but is only gained by Practice and Exercise…”

Joseph Moxon

“A carpenter may lend his wife but not his tools.”

Korean Proverb
good woodwork saying

“If you can’t find the time to do it properly, how will you find the time to fix it?”

John Wooden

“Anyone who doesn’t think money grows on trees hasn’t bought any lumber lately.”


“Where you find quality, you will find a craftsman, not a quality-control expert.”

Robert Brault

“He who works with his hands is a laborer. He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman. He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.”

St. Francis of Assissi (1181-1226)

For the artisan, craft is an end in itself. For you, the artist, craft is the vehicle for expressing your vision. Craft is the visible edge of art

David Bayles

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“Split your own wood, and it will warm you twice.”

Old New England Saying

“Hearing protection is a sound investment.”


Both of them hath he instructed with wisdom, to do carpenters’ work and tapestry, and embroidery in blue and purple, and scarlet twice dyed, and fine linen, and to weave all things, and to invent all new things.

Douay-Rheims Bible Exodus 35:35

“Ultimately, literature is nothing but carpentry…. Both are very hard work. Writing something is almost as hard as making a table. With both you are working with reality, a material just as hard as wood. Both are full of tricks and techniques. Basically very little magic and a lot of hard work.”

Gabriel Garcia Marquez
old wood sayings and advice

There are no mistakes in woodworking until you run out of wood.

Measure Twice-Cut Once.

“Crafts make us feel rooted, give us a sense of belonging and connect us with our history. Our ancestors used to create these crafts out of necessity, and now we do them for fun, to make money and to express ourselves.”

Phyllis George

Better tools save time; they don’t make you a better craftsman!


“It is not enough to know your craft – you have to have feeling. Science is all very well, but for us imagination is worth far more.”

Edouard Manet

“Carpentry is the Illusion of Perfection.”


“A craftsman knows in advance what the finished result will be, while the artist knows only what it will be when he has finished it.”

W. H. Auden

Someday you will look back at this work, laugh nervously and change the subject.


To learn about eye protection, ask someone who has one.

“Think about it: Everything with a power cord eventually winds up in the trash.”

John Sarge

“To the absolutist in every craftsman, each imperfection is a failure; to the practitioner, obsession with perfection seems a perception for failure.”

Richard Sennett
quotes for the craft

Those who say it’s impossible should not get in the way of those doing the impossible. 

Every woodworker needs a fireplace.

“Without craftsmanship, inspiration is a mere reed shaken in the wind.”

Johannes Brahms

When it comes to buying tools I use the one my father taught me. “It’s easier to get forgiveness than it is to get permission” my wife hates it, but it works every time……… well almost.

Some of the finest furniture ever made was veneered.

Few hand tool purists can make a living with them.

“Each plank…can have only one ideal use. The woodworker must find this ideal use and create an object of utility to man, and if nature smiles, an object of lasting beauty.”

George Nakashima

Woodworking minus patience equals firewood.


The best carpenters make the fewest chips

Woodworkers are knotty.

“In crafting ther eare no mistakes just unique creations.”


Sawdust Is Man Glitter.

“For safety is not a gadget but a state of mind.”

Eleanor Everet

Your safety gears are between your ears.

A bad day woodworking is better than a good day working.

the craft quotes

Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment.

Dr Kerr L White

“Crafting your work beats being told what to do.”

Richie Norton

Safety glasses: making foresight 20/20.


Two roads diverged in a wood and I – I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.”

Robert Frost

How can a person take pride in his work when skill and care are considered luxuries! We’re not machines! We have a human need for craftsmanship!

A craftsman knows in advance what the finished result will be, while the artist knows only what it will be when he has finished it.

W. H. Auden

“A work of utility might also be a work of art if we cared to make it so.”

William Morris

Crafting is a way to express your soul without words.

The workshop to me always means great atmosphere, working, smell of wood, dust and, at the end of the day, you’ve created something.

David Linley

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2 thoughts on “Craft Quotes: Inspiring for Woodworking Artisans And Enthusiasts”

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