Furniture Intensive

15TW1 Brian demos marquetryLead Instructor Brian Reid (left) demonstrates marquetry

February 18 - May 10, 2019
June 10 – August 30, 2019
October 28, 2019 – January 24, 2020
February 17 – May 8, 2020


Our twelve-week Furniture Intensive is designed to meet the needs of aspiring professional furniture makers and amateurs on sabbatical from other professions. These include design professionals who want the deep understanding of materials and construction they need to turn their ideas into reality. With two instructors and an assistant available for only twelve students, each participant is able to individualize the course of study to fit his or her interests and level of experience.

To see a listing of alumni, including professions and websites, click here.




The skills available through our curriculum include:

  • Design – Improving your ability to sketch, render objects, and think in three dimensions. Drafting; design development through models, mock-ups, and prototypes; critiques and discussions of aesthetics.

  • Lumber selection – Wood characteristics, buying lumber, selecting wood appropriate to your design.

  • Joinery – Choosing and making the right joint for every situation using both traditional and contemporary methods.

  • Traditional hand skills – The foundation of fine furniture making: sharpening; use and tuning of chisels, hand planes, saws, and scrapers; hand-cut joinery.

  • Machine techniques – Use of power tools and routers for stock preparation, joinery, and shaping of components.

  • Advanced techniques – Laminate bending, steam bending, coopering, working with shop-sawn and commercial veneer, jig making, and more.

  • Surface preparation and finishing – Preparing wood with cutting tools, scrapers, and abrasives; choosing the right finish for the effect you want; application of finishes.

  • Shop maintenance – Selection, tuning, and maintenance of woodworking machinery.

  • Professional practices – Visits to professional workshops to discuss how to run a business, pricing, and marketing.

The course divides into three segments. The first two weeks cover our Basic Woodworking curriculum, which explores the essentials of furniture making with an emphasis on hand skills. Each student designs and constructs a project with hand-cut dovetail and mortise-and-tenon joinery. For the second segment (6 weeks), students learn to design and build solid-wood casepieces with doors and drawers. The final segment (4 weeks) focuses on curves and veneer, including techniques for steam bending, laminate bending, coopering, and resawing of veneer. Each student designs and constructs a challenging piece that requires one or more of these techniques.


The faculty for the twelve-week Furniture Intensive is drawn from among the following instructors. Additional faculty may be named as opening dates draw near. Most of the instructors listed have websites, which you can visit for more extensive views of their work. See list of instructors here.


Application Process

Participants are accepted any time on a first-come, first-served basis. No application is required.
All experience levels welcome, except for absolute beginners.
Enrollment limited to 12.

Tuition: $8,000

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