I have often found that people are hesitant about learning to carve partly as a result of the misconception that the craft requires extreme artistic talent. In fact this is not the case – the only thing required is a logical approach.

I am a firm believer in the saying, ‘The only way to understand is to do’. This book is therefore designed to provide a course in the basics of the craft through a series of projects which will gradually allow you to build up your skills as well as a collection of varied carvings. Introductory chapters covering tools and techniques provide you with all the information you need to be able to tackle the projects. You can refer to them as often or as little as you wish depending on your level of skill and confidence.

I have selected decorations that are not only excellent learning pieces but also attractive ornamentations with many applications. Moulding projects, for instance, are useful forms of decoration both for the cabinetmaker and for the woodturner. Many of the projects are equally as attractive on their own merits as they would be incorporated into furniture.

I recommend working through the projects in the order in which they appear. They progressively introduce new skills so that by the time you have completed the last in the series you will be well on the way to becoming an accomplished carver.