Best places to buy wood for woodworking

Best places to buy wood for woodworking

If you’re an avid woodworker or just starting out, finding high-quality wood is essential for your projects. But where can you find the best wood for woodworking? In this ultimate guide, we’ll explore various options for buying wood, from local suppliers to online retailers, so you can make an informed choice.

One of the most common options for buying wood is to visit local lumberyards or woodworking stores. These places often have a wide selection of wood species, cuts, and sizes, allowing you to choose the perfect materials for your projects. Plus, the staff at these stores is usually knowledgeable and can offer advice on the best type of wood for your specific needs.

If you’re looking for a more unique and exotic wood species, you may need to explore specialty wood suppliers. These suppliers often carry rare and hard-to-find woods that can add a touch of uniqueness to your projects. Keep in mind, however, that these specialty woods may come at a higher price tag.

Another convenient option for buying wood is to explore online retailers. Many websites specialize in selling wood for woodworking, offering a wide range of species, cuts, and sizes. This option is particularly useful if you’re looking for hard-to-find woods or if you prefer the convenience of shopping from home. However, be sure to read customer reviews and check for return policies before making a purchase online.

Local Lumberyards: Finding Quality Wood in Your Area

If you are a woodworking enthusiast or professional, finding quality wood is essential for your projects. One of the best places to find high-quality wood is at your local lumberyard. These businesses specialize in selling various types of wood, including hardwoods, softwoods, and specialty woods.

When searching for local lumberyards in your area, consider the following:

  1. Location: Look for lumberyards that are conveniently located near you. This will make it easier for you to visit them and transport the wood to your workshop.
  2. Product Range: Check the lumberyard’s product range to ensure they have the type of wood you need. Different projects may require different types of wood, so it’s important to have a variety to choose from.
  3. Quality: Look for lumberyards that are known for selling high-quality wood. The wood should be free from defects, such as warping or cracking, and should have a smooth and even surface.
  4. Customer Reviews: Read customer reviews and ratings of local lumberyards to get an idea of other customers’ experiences. This can help you determine if the lumberyard provides good customer service and quality wood.
  5. Price: Compare prices between different lumberyards to ensure you are getting a fair deal. Keep in mind that higher quality wood may be more expensive, but it will also produce better results in your projects.

Once you have found a local lumberyard that meets your criteria, visit the yard to inspect the wood in person. Look for straight and flat boards that are free from knots, insect damage, or decay. Ask the lumberyard staff for assistance if you are unsure about a particular piece of wood.

In addition to buying wood, many lumberyards also offer other services such as cutting, planing, and delivery. These services can save you time and effort, especially if you don’t have the necessary tools or transportation.

Supporting local lumberyards not only ensures you have access to quality wood but also helps to sustain the local economy. So, before heading straight to the big-box stores, consider checking out your local lumberyard for all your woodworking needs.

Online Wood Suppliers: Exploring Your Options on the Internet

When it comes to buying wood for woodworking projects, the internet has opened up a world of possibilities. Online wood suppliers offer a wide range of wood species, grades, and sizes, making it easy to find exactly what you need for your project. Here are some options to consider when looking for wood suppliers online:

1. Specialty Wood Retailers

Specialty wood retailers are online stores that focus specifically on selling wood products. They often offer a wide selection of wood species, including both domestic and exotic options. These retailers typically provide detailed information about each type of wood, including its characteristics, uses, and sustainability. Some even offer custom cutting and milling services to meet your specific project requirements.

2. Home Improvement Stores

Many home improvement stores also have an online presence where they sell wood products. These stores usually have a more limited selection compared to specialty wood retailers, but they are often more accessible and offer competitive pricing. Home improvement stores may carry popular wood species like pine, oak, and maple, as well as plywood and other sheet goods.

3. Online Marketplaces

Online marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, and Etsy can also be great places to find wood suppliers. These platforms offer a wide range of products, including raw wood, reclaimed wood, and even pre-made woodcrafts. It’s important to carefully review the seller’s ratings and reviews before making a purchase to ensure quality and reliability.

4. Local Sawmills

While not strictly online, many local sawmills have an online presence where they showcase their available wood products. Working directly with a sawmill can be a great way to get high-quality wood at competitive prices. Some sawmills even offer the option to visit their facilities and handpick the wood you want.

5. Woodworking Forums and Communities

Woodworking forums and communities can also be a valuable resource for finding wood suppliers. Members often share their recommendations and experiences with different suppliers, helping you make an informed decision. These online communities can also provide insights into the quality and reliability of various suppliers.

6. Wholesale Wood Suppliers

If you are looking to buy wood in bulk or for commercial purposes, wholesale wood suppliers can be a cost-effective option. Many of these suppliers have online catalogs where you can browse and purchase wood products in larger quantities. Some may require a minimum order size, so be sure to check their terms and conditions before buying.

Exploring these options and comparing prices, wood species availability, and shipping options can help you find the best online wood supplier for your needs. Take the time to research each supplier and read customer reviews to ensure you are getting the best quality wood for your woodworking projects.

Specialty Wood Stores: Discovering Unique and Exotic Materials

If you are looking to add a unique and exotic touch to your woodworking projects, specialty wood stores can be a treasure trove of materials. These stores specialize in carrying rare and hard-to-find wood species from all around the world. Here are some reasons why you should consider visiting a specialty wood store:

  • Wide Selection: Specialty wood stores often have a much wider selection of wood species compared to traditional lumber yards. You will find a variety of unique and exotic woods that you may not be able to find elsewhere.
  • Quality Materials: Since specialty wood stores focus on carrying high-quality and unique materials, you can expect the wood to be well-maintained and of superior quality. This is especially important if you are using the wood for fine furniture or art pieces.
  • Expert Advice: The staff at specialty wood stores are usually knowledgeable about the different wood species they carry. They can provide valuable advice and recommendations based on your specific woodworking needs. Whether you are looking for a specific grain pattern or durability, they can help you find the perfect wood for your project.
  • Customization Options: In many cases, specialty wood stores offer customization options such as milling services. This means that you can get the wood cut, planed, and shaped according to your project requirements. This can save you time and effort, ensuring that the wood is ready to use right away.

When visiting a specialty wood store, it’s important to keep in mind that these materials can be more expensive compared to regular lumber. However, the unique and exotic nature of the wood makes it worth the investment if you are looking to create one-of-a-kind woodworking pieces.

Salvaged Wood: Eco-Friendly and Budget-Friendly Alternatives

Salvaged wood, also known as reclaimed wood, is a sustainable and cost-effective option for woodworking projects. By using salvaged wood, you not only minimize the demand for new lumber but also give new life to materials that would otherwise go to waste.

Here are a few reasons why you should consider using salvaged wood:

  1. Eco-friendly: Salvaged wood reduces the need for logging and deforestation, which helps preserve natural resources and protect the environment. By repurposing old wood, you contribute to the sustainability of your woodworking projects.
  2. Budget-friendly: Salvaged wood is often more affordable than newly harvested lumber. You can often find salvaged wood at salvage yards, architectural salvage stores, or even online marketplaces. Buying salvaged wood can save you money and give you a unique, vintage look.
  3. Diverse selection: Salvaged wood comes in a variety of species, colors, and textures. From old barn wood to reclaimed flooring, you can find a wide range of options to suit your woodworking needs.
  4. Character and history: Salvaged wood often has unique characteristics and a story to tell. The patina, nail holes, and weathering add charm and personality to your projects.

When working with salvaged wood, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Sourcing: Look for reputable suppliers or salvage yards that specialize in reclaimed wood. Ensure that the salvaged wood is properly cleaned, treated, and free from any pests or contaminants.
  • Condition: Check the condition of the salvaged wood before purchasing. It should be structurally sound, with no rot, insect damage, or decay. Some signs of aging and wear are expected and can add character to your projects.
  • Preparation: Salvaged wood may require some extra preparation, such as cleaning, sanding, or refinishing. Be prepared to put in the extra effort to restore the wood to its former glory.
  • Integration: Combining salvaged wood with other materials can create unique and interesting designs. Consider incorporating salvaged wood as accents or features in your woodworking projects.

In conclusion, salvaged wood offers a sustainable and budget-friendly alternative to traditional lumber. By using salvaged wood, you can contribute to environmental conservation while creating beautiful and unique woodworking projects.

Woodworking Shows and Expos: Meeting Suppliers in Person

If you are a woodworking enthusiast, attending woodworking shows and expos can be a great way to meet suppliers in person and explore a wide range of wood options for your projects. These events are usually held in convention centers or exhibition halls and attract various woodworking professionals, suppliers, and hobbyists.

Why Attend Woodworking Shows and Expos?

Woodworking shows and expos provide an opportunity to see, touch, and feel different types of wood species firsthand. This can help you make a better decision when choosing the right type of wood for your projects. You can examine the wood’s grain patterns, texture, and color variations up close.

Attending these events also allows you to gain knowledge and learn new techniques from industry experts through live demonstrations, workshops, and presentations. You can pick up tips and tricks from experienced woodworkers and expand your woodworking skills.

Meeting Suppliers and Vendors

Woodworking shows and expos are a hub for suppliers and vendors who showcase their products and services. It is an excellent opportunity to meet them face-to-face, ask questions, and establish direct contact. This personal interaction can lead to valuable connections and relationships, making it easier to source wood, tools, and other materials in the future.

Suppliers at these events often offer special discounts and promotions, making it a cost-effective way to purchase wood and woodworking supplies. You can compare prices, quality, and varieties offered by different suppliers and make informed decisions about your purchases.

Networking and Community Building

Woodworking shows and expos are also a place to network with like-minded individuals who share your passion for woodworking. You can meet fellow woodworkers, exchange ideas, and gain inspiration from their projects. Building connections within the woodworking community can open doors to new opportunities, collaborations, and mentorship.

Planning Your Visit

When planning to attend a woodworking show or expo, it is helpful to research and find out the participating suppliers and vendors in advance. Make a list of the ones you are interested in visiting and prioritize your time accordingly. Check the event schedule for any workshops, presentations, or demonstrations that you would like to attend.

It’s also a good idea to bring a notepad or digital device to take notes, jot down contact information, and capture any design ideas or inspirations you come across at the event. Some events may have a floor plan or directory, which can be useful in navigating through the exhibition area.


Woodworking shows and expos provide a unique opportunity to meet suppliers in person, explore different wood options, learn new techniques, and network with the woodworking community. Attending these events can be a rewarding experience for both beginners and experienced woodworkers alike.

Sawmills: Buying Directly from the Source

If you’re looking for the highest quality wood at the best prices, buying directly from sawmills is the way to go. Sawmills are the primary source of lumber, and purchasing from them can give you several advantages.

1. Wide Selection: Sawmills offer a wide variety of wood species, sizes, and grades. Whether you need hardwood or softwood, rough-cut or finished lumber, sawmills can provide you with a diverse range of options to suit your woodworking needs.

2. Quality Control: When you buy from sawmills, you have direct control over the quality of the wood. You can personally inspect the lumber and ensure that it meets your specifications. This eliminates the risk of receiving subpar materials that can happen when buying from retailers.

3. Cost Savings: Purchasing wood directly from sawmills can often result in significant cost savings. By eliminating the middleman, you can cut out additional markups and fees that retailers typically add to the prices. This allows you to get the wood you need at a more affordable price.

4. Customization: Sawmills can often accommodate special requests and provide customization options. If you need specific sizes, dimensions, or cuts, you can discuss your requirements with the sawmill operators. They can tailor the wood to meet your exact needs, giving you more flexibility in your woodworking projects.

5. Sustainable Practices: Many sawmills utilize sustainable logging practices and source their wood from responsibly managed forests. By buying from them, you can support these practices and contribute to the preservation of our natural resources.

When buying directly from sawmills, it’s important to keep in mind that they may have different rules and processes for purchasing. Some may only sell in large quantities or have specific operating hours. Therefore, it’s recommended to contact the sawmill beforehand to inquire about their buying process.

Buying wood directly from sawmills can be a rewarding experience for woodworkers. Not only do you get access to high-quality materials, but you also have the opportunity to support sustainable practices and save money. So, consider purchasing from sawmills for your next woodworking project.

Furniture and Cabinet Shops: Utilizing Scrap and Offcuts

When it comes to woodworking, furniture and cabinet shops are often the go-to places for finding high-quality wood. However, what many people don’t realize is that these shops can also be a great source for scrap and offcuts.

What Are Scrap and Offcuts?

Scrap and offcuts refer to the leftover pieces of wood that are generated during the furniture and cabinet making process. These pieces are often too small to be used for their original purpose but can still be valuable for smaller woodworking projects or as decorative accents.

The Benefits of Utilizing Scrap and Offcuts

There are several benefits to using scrap and offcuts in your woodworking projects:

  • Cost Savings: Buying scrap and offcuts from furniture and cabinet shops is often more affordable than purchasing full-sized boards.
  • Variety: Scrap and offcuts come in various shapes, sizes, and wood species, allowing you to experiment with different materials and create unique designs.
  • Sustainability: By utilizing scrap and offcuts, you are reducing waste and making a more sustainable choice.
  • Challenge: Working with limited sizes and shapes can present a fun challenge and force you to think creatively in your woodworking projects.

Where to Find Scrap and Offcuts

Here are a few tips on where to find scrap and offcuts:

  1. Furniture and Cabinet Shops: As mentioned earlier, these shops often have a surplus of scrap and offcuts that they are willing to sell or even give away.
  2. Woodworking Conventions and Trade Shows: Many woodworking events have booths or areas where vendors offer scrap and offcuts for sale.
  3. Online Marketplaces: Websites like eBay and Craigslist often have listings for scrap and offcuts.

Utilizing Scrap and Offcuts

Once you have acquired scrap and offcuts, the possibilities are endless. Here are a few project ideas to get you started:

  • Cutting Boards: Combine pieces of different species to create beautiful and functional cutting boards.
  • Small Decorative Boxes: Use scrap and offcuts to construct unique jewelry boxes or storage containers.
  • Coasters: Cut small pieces of scrap wood into coasters and add a protective finish.
  • Picture Frames: Create custom picture frames by joining various pieces of scrap together.
  • Wooden Toys: Use your imagination to design and build wooden toys for children.


Don’t underestimate the value of scrap and offcuts from furniture and cabinet shops. Not only can they save you money, but they also offer a world of creative possibilities for your woodworking projects. Start exploring the world of scrap wood and let your imagination run wild!

Classifieds and Online Marketplaces: Searching for Deals and Bargains

Classifieds and online marketplaces are great places to find deals and bargains on wood for woodworking projects. Whether you are a professional woodworker or a hobbyist, these platforms offer a wide variety of options to suit your needs.

Here are some popular classifieds and online marketplaces where you can search for wood:

  • Craigslist: Craigslist is a widely used online classifieds platform where you can find local listings for wood and other woodworking materials. It allows you to filter your search based on location, price, and other criteria. Be sure to verify the condition and quality of the wood before making a purchase.
  • eBay: eBay is a popular online marketplace where individuals and businesses can buy and sell a wide range of products, including wood. You can find both new and used options at various price points. Check the seller’s reputation and read reviews before making a purchase.
  • Etsy: Etsy is an online marketplace known for handmade and unique items. It has a dedicated section for woodworking supplies, including a wide selection of wood. Many sellers on Etsy specialize in exotic and specialty woods, making it a great place to find unique materials for your projects.
  • Facebook Marketplace: Facebook Marketplace is a convenient platform for buying and selling items locally. You can find woodworking materials, including wood, from sellers in your area. You can also join local woodworking groups on Facebook to connect with other enthusiasts who may be selling wood or know where to find it.
  • Local Classifieds: Check your local newspaper or community bulletin boards for classified ads offering wood. Many individuals may be selling excess or leftover wood at a reasonable price. Meeting sellers in person allows you to inspect the wood before purchasing and avoid shipping costs.

When searching for wood on these platforms, keep the following tips in mind:

  1. Research the seller: Before making a purchase, research the seller’s reputation and check for reviews or feedback from previous buyers.
  2. Inspect the wood: If possible, inspect the wood in person or request detailed photos. Look for any defects, warping, or signs of damage that may affect its usability for your project.
  3. Communicate clearly: When contacting sellers, be clear about your requirements, such as the type, quantity, and dimensions of wood you need. This helps in finding the right options and avoids any misunderstandings.
  4. Compare prices: Don’t settle for the first listing you find. Compare prices across different sellers to ensure you are getting the best deal.
  5. Consider shipping costs: If purchasing online, factor in shipping costs when comparing prices. Sometimes, local sellers may offer better overall deals even if their wood price is slightly higher.
  6. Check return policy: Before finalizing a purchase, make sure to check the return policy in case the wood doesn’t meet your expectations or requirements.

By utilizing classifieds and online marketplaces, you can expand your options and find great deals on wood for your woodworking projects. Take the time to do your research and ensure the quality and suitability of the wood before making a purchase.

Happy woodworking!


Can you give me some tips on where to buy wood for woodworking?

Sure! When it comes to buying wood for woodworking, there are a few options you can consider. You can check out local lumberyards, home improvement stores, or even online retailers. Each option has its own advantages and it ultimately depends on your personal preferences and needs.

What should I look for when buying wood for woodworking?

When buying wood for woodworking, you should consider several factors. First, make sure the wood is of good quality and free from defects such as cracks or knots. Additionally, consider the type of wood you need for your project and its specific characteristics, such as hardness or grain pattern. Finally, consider the size and shape of the wood to ensure it will meet your project requirements.

Where can I find specialty or exotic woods?

If you are looking for specialty or exotic woods, you might need to explore specialty woodworking stores or online retailers that specialize in rare or unique woods. These stores often have a wide selection of specialty woods sourced from different parts of the world. Keep in mind that specialty or exotic woods can be more expensive compared to more common types of wood.

What are the advantages of buying wood from a local lumberyard?

Buying wood from a local lumberyard has its advantages. Firstly, you can often find a wider variety of wood types and sizes compared to a regular home improvement store. Additionally, the staff at a lumberyard are usually knowledgeable about different types of wood and can provide guidance or recommendations based on your specific project needs. Lastly, buying from a local lumberyard supports local businesses and the local economy.

Is it possible to buy wood online?

Yes, it is definitely possible to buy wood online. Many online retailers specialize in selling wood for woodworking purposes and offer a wide range of wood types, sizes, and finishes. It is important to do your research and read reviews to ensure you are purchasing from a reputable retailer. Additionally, keep in mind that when buying wood online, you won’t have the opportunity to physically inspect the wood before purchasing, so be sure to check the return policy in case the wood doesn’t meet your expectations.

What are some things to consider when buying wood online?

When buying wood online, there are a few things to consider. Firstly, check the reputation and reviews of the online retailer to ensure they have a good track record. Secondly, carefully read the product description and specifications to ensure the wood meets your project requirements in terms of type, size, and quality. Lastly, check the shipping and return policies in case there are any issues with the wood or if you need to make a return or exchange.

Are there any other sources for buying wood for woodworking?

Yes, apart from local lumberyards, home improvement stores, and online retailers, there are a few other sources you can consider for buying wood for woodworking. These include salvage yards, where you can often find reclaimed or salvaged wood with unique character and history, as well as woodworking or craft fairs, where vendors may sell wood and woodworking supplies. Additionally, you can also consider contacting local woodworking clubs or associations, as they may have resources or connections for purchasing wood.


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