The winter holidays are the perfect time to enjoy the slow, satisfying progression of a woodworking project. DIY woodworking crafts can make beautiful and thoughtful gifts for your loved ones, or you might give them a place of pride in your own holiday decorations.
We’ve got a list of holiday woodworking projects that are perfect for getting into the spirit. Most are simple enough for beginner to intermediate woodworkers to take on with quality woodworking hand tools or small power tools. Put on your favorite holiday music, pour yourself a warm beverage and get cozy with these 11 winter DIY projects.
1. Stocking Hangers
When you need to hang those stockings by the chimney with the utmost care, you’ll love having these cute stocking hangers. Each one is decorated with favorite photos to show whose is whose, and the materials are quite simple: family photos, wood glue, hooks and a few wood block sizes that can be easily cut at home with a pull saw. Use sepia photos if you really want the rustic look. Also, bonus points if you bust these out for the first time on Christmas morning!
2. Wooden Birch Vase
You’ll start with an actual birch log, cut it to size, sand it and drill a hole in its center with a tri-fluted drill bit. From there, you can place dry decorations in your vase as-is, or you can line its inside with a glass vase if you’d like to use fresh flowers. Red holly berries look just sublime in this vase, but almost any kind of winter floral arrangement will be great.
3. Countdown Calendar
In this fun little project, you’ll build a miniature hutch to hold two numbered blocks that count down the number of days. Add whatever decorations you’d like to the hutch and think about applying a paint or finish of your choice for a signature twist.
4. Wood Lantern
This project starts from the humble beginning of a repurposed wooden wine crate and turns its materials into a gorgeous wooden lantern. It’s a simple project that makes a beautiful addition to your holiday decor. What’s more festive and cozy than a candle in a wooden lantern, after all? Be sure to observe candle safety rules, or replace the open flame with a battery-powered electric candle.
5. Snowflake Wall Shelf
Ready to tackle something a little more advanced that deserves prominent placement in your home? The many cuts may look intimidating, but as long as you’re reasonably good with bevel cuts, it’s not actually as complex as it looks.
6. Wooden House Advent Calendar
Advent calendars are a charming way to make every day of the Christmas season extra special for you and yours. Each day has a tiny wooden house to lift up and reveal a gift, like a tiny trinket or piece of candy. It’s a pretty simple project with tons of decorative possibilities, especially if you have kids. Make sure everyone gets the chance to decorate a few houses!
7. Peppermint Striped Candlesticks
All you’ll need are a couple of 4x4s, some red and white paint and basic tools. After cutting the 4x4s down to size, you’ll sand and paint them and then drill out a hole in the top big enough for a tea light candle. (This project recommends using a battery-powered candle to avoid fire hazards.) Just make sure you’re stocked up on hot chocolate because you’re going to start craving it as soon as the cozy vibes hit you.
8. Wood Slice Ornaments
There’s an almost unlimited number of different ways you can do the classic wood slice ornament. They’re easy to print or burn with images, but it’s also simple to turn them into reindeer, santas, snowmen or almost anything else! In addition to being versatile, wood slice ornaments are also really inexpensive to make. Wood slices are available by the dozens from craft stores, or you can even make your own.
9. Pallet Christmas Tree
Here’s a great project if you’re looking for a centerpiece outdoor decoration. After a few hours of cutting apart pallets and attaching them with wood screws and you’ve got a lovely Christmas tree that you can paint in any color that looks good for your property.
10. Road Map Trees
If you like your decorations a little quirky, this project will be a holiday treat for you — repurposed road maps, turned into Christmas trees! You’ll just need some simple tools, scrap wood and (most importantly) a selection of vintage road maps — the more interesting-looking, the better. They definitely don’t have to be perfect and, in fact, they probably shouldn’t be since vintage oddball charm is a huge part of the decorating appeal on this project!
11. Wood Block Snowman
Let’s finish up with this cute and easy project that’s great to do with kids. Get creative and add fun details. And if you really like the project, make a whole snow family!