How Many Woodworkers In Us


The United States boasts a vibrant woodworking culture. Whether it’s furniture, hardwood flooring, cabinets or other wood items and products, these unique craftspeople fuel the entire industry with custom creations from coast to coast. To get a better understanding of just how many woodworkers are operating in the US today, we’ve taken a look at statistics on what industries employ professionals with expertise in carpentry and cabinet making and examined them further to get more accurate figures related to the total amount of professionals working in this craft throughout the country.

Carpenters, cabinet makers and other woodworkers make up 2.3% of all professional positions across the US, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). These jobs range from installation to repair and fabrication roles and they encompass both commercial contracts and residential work orders. There are an estimated 1.21 million woodworkers employed in the US mainly falling within two categories: self-employed individuals or those employed by small businesses who specialize in bag construction & engineering; and those employed by larger companies who concentrate on architectural & metal fabrication services.

The BLS also estimates there are 880,000 self-employed workers making up half of all workers within this field ” many who have experience ranging from fine furnituremaking & cabinetry to custom carpentry & millwork installation ” contributing significantly to job growth due to their ability to flexibly adjust production cycles depending on local demand for individual projects. All combined, these highly talented craftsmen account for about four percent of America’s economic output in an ever-growing sector that continues to flourish despite challenging economic conditions.

The History of Woodworking in the United States

Woodworking in the United States has a long and fascinating history. From the first settlers of Jamestown to the industrial scale, mechanized woodshops of today, woodworking has been a key part of America’s economic engine. From the colonial period through to the 19th century, many individuals and families crafted furniture, household items, and tools out of wood as an economic necessity. Later on in the early 20th century, industrial-scale woodworking became common and wooden furniture making was largely done with mass production using mechanized equipment. Today, woodworking still remains a popular hobby for both amateur and professional crafters alike.

It is estimated that there are between 100,000 and 150,000 professional or semi-professional woodworkers in the United States today. There is also strong growth of small-scale craft production within hobbyists and small business owners who take pride in creating quality handmade items from solid hardwoods often sourced from local sawmills as well as larger scale cabinet shops were skilled craftspeople manufacture kitchen cabinets to seller specifications. Additionally, with all sorts of new technology ranging from CNC machines to laser cutters being made available at an affordable price point it is likely that this trend will continue to grow in popularity. While exact numbers are not available on just how many people are involved in enjoying woodworking as a hobby across America it is very likely that hundreds of thousands if not millions of people have participated in some shape or form due to its flexible scalability available to consumers whether they have no previous experience or knowledge up to advanced users expanding their skill sets and even starting their own businesses utilizing their talents as well as technology advancements available.

Benefits of Woodworking for Individuals and Society

Woodworking is an important craft which has been practiced by individuals for millennia. It involves transforming a piece of wood into useful and unique items such as furniture, toys, artwork and even musical instruments. During the development of woodworking techniques, the craft has grown in popularity and complexity over time.

Today, there are an estimated 620,000 professional woodworkers in the United States, representing 0.4 percent of all employed people [1]. This number doesn’t include hobbyists and other DIYers who have yet to turn their passion into a profession. As more people become attracted to this traditional craft due to an increased interest in sustainable lifestyle choices, the number of individuals working with lumber is likely to increase over time.

The benefits of woodworking for both individuals and society are numerous. For starters, the activity offers tremendous creativity options which help individuals tap into their imaginations and invent new things with every project they undertake. On a societal level, it can support conservation efforts by promoting sustainable forestry practices that ultimately benefit our environment over time as trees are replaced at constant levels to provide fresh timber for making furniture or products that can be reused instead of thrown away after one-time use (like plastic). Furthermore, wooden items tend to last much longer than those made from other materials because they don’t corrode or degrade when exposed to changing temperatures or elements like rain or sunlight. Thus saving resources that would otherwise have been used on replacements each year. Finally, woodworking is a major job creator creating opportunities for many people involved in various aspects such as harvesting timber from forests; sawing/shaping pieces at manufacturers; selling tools and supplies at stores; transporting items from manufacturers to retail outlets; marketing finished goods; upholstering furniture pieces etc., thus creating jobs for many Americans across the country.

Why Does A Woodworking Router Shut Off Randomly Site Sawmillcreek.Org

Further Exploration of Woodworking Demographics

The exact number of woodworkers in the United States is unknown. However, according to a survey conducted by the Woodwork Career Alliance of North America (WCA) in 2018, roughly 5 million people identified as woodworkers in the United States.

A closer look at WCA’s survey reveals that most of the American woodworkers are self-employed (72%), are hobbyists (62%), and more than half are over 50 years old. Interestingly, the majority don’t believe they can make a living full-time from woodworking alone; only 48% reported that they make “a significant part” of their income from woodworking activities.

The same survey also revealed that amateur enthusiasts tend to dominate the hobbyist category, with 40% identifying themselves as amateur hobbyists compared to 22% as professional artisan, 16 % furniture maker/woodworker and 21% other categories including boatbuilders and carpenters/remodelers.

Other surveys conducted in 2020 show growth within apprentice programs since 2018. As well, nearly 60 percent of all American households had at least one member engaged in some type of do-it-yourself project within a 12 month period and an increase in DIY ecommerce by nearly 20 percent since just 2018.

Overall it appears there is an increasing number of aspiring woodworkers but economic uncertainty prohibits many from making it a full time endeavor and trend towards mastery remain strong as individuals continue to invest their time and money into learning more about crafting with wood for both profitable and non-profitable means.

Professional Woodworker Profiles ” Numbers and Job Descriptions

The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates the number of professional woodworking jobs as of May 2019 to be around 233,400. This includes a variety of job profiles such as cabinet makers, furniture makers, fine woodworkers, custom woodworkers and upholsterers. Other job profiles within the field include mill workers who assemble parts for milling machinery, finishers who apply finishes and veneers to materials, and carpenters who build items out of wood. Woodworking requires individuals to have strong skills in measuring and sawing different types of woods, using proper joinery techniques to turn raw lumber into finished products such as cabinets and furniture while also having an eye for detail and obvious artistic ability. As technology has advanced, new roles have emerged in CNC (Computer Numerical Control) technology ” this is an automated cutting technique that uses computer software such as AutoCAD or SolidWorks and a machine tool to fabricate precise shapes with clean edges quickly and efficiently. With an expected growth rate in the industry of about 8 percent through 2026, the career prospects for woodworking professionals in the US seem promising indeed!

The Growth of the Casual Woodworking Scene

In recent years, the number of woodworkers in the United States has increased significantly. The hobby is now more accessible than ever before thanks to online tutorials, tools, and materials. A large number of woodworking clubs have opened across the country which allow experienced woodworkers to pass their knowledge on to others. There are also many trade schools that offer classes to teach people more about this craft. Additionally, stores catering specifically to woodworking needs have made purchasing supplies much easier for those who wish to begin crafting and further their skills. Moreover, celebrities such as Jimmy DiResta and other popular influencers have brought a lot of attention to the craft through showcasing their projects on social media platforms. All of this has resulted in an exponential growth in casual woodworking among people seeking relaxation, belonging, ingenuity and accomplishment by building something with their hands. As such, it is difficult to estimate how many dedicated individuals are actively participating in the activity currently but it can be assumed that there are thousands at least nationwide.

Common Challenges of Woodworking Professionals

There are roughly 674,590 woodworkers in the United States. Woodworking is a skilled craft that requires knowledge, experience, and specialized tools, and many professional woodworking craftsmen face common challenges as they pursue their trade.

One of the main challenges is staying competitive in a crowded marketplace. With more woodworkers than ever before taking up the trade, it can be difficult for professionals to market themselves and stand out from the competition. Another challenge arises from constantly changing technology, materials and techniques that allow for new ways of working with wood but require constant learning and adaptation. In addition, some woodworkers struggle with attaining a steady stream of customers. Business entities such as shops or contractors must invest time into marketing or networking to stay profitable while also ensuring quality workmanship with each project taken on. Finally, some find it difficult to keep up with necessary paperwork such as taxes or contracts in order to remain compliant with necessary regulations.

National Woodworking Events and Trade Shows

According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are around 591,450 woodworkers in the United States. This number includes career woodworkers employed across a wide variety of industries ” such as furniture making, cabinetry and joinery, logging, and general carpentry.

What Use Is a Woodworker in Chicago Zoning

The number of woodworking enthusiasts and hobbyists is much higher: Woodworking Magazine estimates that more than five million people in the US are passionate about their craft. Woodworking communities often organize events ” from regional to national levels ” that bring together like-minded individuals to network, learn new skills, and share finished projects.

National level events include trade shows held by various industry organizations; for example, AWFS Fair (now called AWFS Visionary) hosted by the Association of Woodworking & Furnishing Suppliers every two years in Las Vegas. Such trade shows are large-scale affairs offering visitors the chance to inspect new tools and methods first-hand, attend classes or seminars with expert masters at work, or view original works created by leading master craftsmen. Other events offer a competition or festival atmosphere where woodworkers can measure their skill against others or even win recognition or awards. In addition to AWFS Visionary, other national events include Passport To Woodturning Symposium hosted by American Association of Woodturners (AAW), National Hardwood Lumber Association Convention & Trade Show hosted by National Hardwood Lumber Association etc.

How Can We Develop the US Woodworking Industry?

The US woodworking industry has been a part of our culture for centuries, but in recent years it has been losing ground to mechanized manufacturing and the rise of overseas production. In 2019, there were an estimated 96,000 active woodworkers in the United States, down from 151,200 in 2008 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, there are several steps we can take to develop the US woodworking industry which will help foster economic growth and job creation both directly within the sector as well as in other related businesses.

First and foremost, we should invest in industrial research to advance current tools and techniques used for woodworking. This research would make machines and tools more efficient as well as enhance their durability which would ultimately boost productivity across the sector. Besides that, government policies should support small-to-medium sized woodworking businesses financially whether through grants or tax incentives so they can compete on a larger scale with their foreign competitors. Furthermore, consumers should be encouraged to purchase wooden products made locally while making sure practices like fair wages and environmental sustainability are taken into account throughout the entire process of production. Finally, educational institutions should offer courses specifically tailored towards modernizing traditional craftsmanship methods which would open up access to multiple career opportunities in this field while spurring creativity among younger generations. By taking all of these steps together, we can begin finding ways to not only protect but develop said industry going forward.

Impact of Woodworking on US Economy

The woodworking industry in the United States contributes significantly to the national economy, with an estimated 681,400 jobs and total wages of $36.5 billion as of 2019. This employs more than 1% of all workers in the US. Woodworkers also have a significant impact on global trade and exports, with American-grown hardwoods exported around the world. The amount of woodworking related products imported into the US was fairly insignificant until 1990, when it increased by over 125%.

Woodworking plays an essential role in economic development across the United States. It is one of the largest industries within many states, particularly those from the Midwest, who rely heavily on timber production for jobs and revenue. Furthermore, demand for lumber yards is increasing due to advancements in technology and desire for furniture that implements modern trends & styles. In addition to this, activities within the industry support other local sectors such as agriculture through crucial contributions of fuel & natural resources that assist manufacturing processes & agricultural practices.

Another major factor for how much woodworking impacts US economy is its renewable nature. When properly managed, forests are not just functioning ecosystems but can provide timber and other related products indefinitely; thus ensuring sustainability while providing low-cost materials to improve life quality & living standards throughout society. This internal economic boost has trickled down to benefit jobs associated with transportation & distribution networks including retail activities and recreational programs involving logging which have become more popular recently due to environmental awareness and an increase in outdoor activity across America.


Overall, woodworking is a popular hobby and professional field in the US. According to recent research, there are more than 1.78 million woodworkers living in the US. This population is highly diverse and includes both professional carpenters as well as hobbyists who enjoy taking part in this enjoyable activity. This number has increased significantly over the last few years, likely due to the variety of options available today when it comes to tools, supplies, and project ideas that allow anyone to engage with this craft. It is safe to say that woodworking will continue to be an important part of American culture for many years to come.

Send this to a friend