Testimonials About Our Woodworking School


We’re always honored by the quality and enthusiasm of the furniture making students that come to our woodworking school. In fact, we feel that our woodworking students are doing some of the best woodworking in the USA! Many of our woodworkers have taken time to write us about their experience here–and we’d like to share a few of those letters.  Take a look at our woodworking school testimonials on Facebook and Google, too!

“There are only a handful of woodworkers in this country that possess both the talents of technical woodworking and the skill of communication. Lonnie is blessed with both. All his classes have been taught with the highest standards of integrity, confidence, and attention to detail. We are grateful for teachers, artists, and authors such as Lonnie.” — Marc Adams, Woodworker in Franklin, Indiana

Hi Lonnie,
Thanks for the week of terrific teaching.  You’ve provided a wonderful view of how fine furniture is made and given me a path towards mastering the necessary woodworking skills. I’m thankful for your patience and thoughtful encouragement. I’m looking forward to my return for more woodworking education in future classes.
George A., Woodworker in Ohio

The classes are small, and that’s intentional – to make each student a priority. Lonnie is a genuine man that teaches a skill that he loves, and he sincerely wants the students who come to his school to leave with a deeper appreciation for woodworking. The quality of Lonnie’s own furniture projects is breathtaking and speaks for itself. I would highly recommend this school to anyone who takes woodworking seriously and is seeking to sharpen their skills.

Joseph P., Woodworker in Tennessee

As a serious hobby woodworker, Lonnie Bird’s School of Woodworking has been an excellent place to work on my skills. Lonnie is an expert at woodworking who knows how to teach. He has a number of books published that can be used as textbooks for techniques learned in his classes. There is a consistency of procedures from class to class, and from year to year. I know this because I took my first class with Lonnie in 1997 and have continued ever since. It has been well worth it.

Rick G., Woodworker in Illinois

I have been attending Lonnie Bird’s woodworking classes for at least 7 years – often several times per year. During that time I have enjoyed not only learning to make heirloom quality furniture but to use all the woodworking tools — especially hand tools. The classes have all been outstanding and a great learning experience. Each project has resulted in a unique and beautiful piece of furniture. The class room is well laid out with a workbench for each of us and the power equipment is on a separate floor to segregate that kind of work as well as the noise inherent with these tools.

Lonnie has an outstanding grasp of teaching as well as knowledge of all aspects of woodworking and furniture design and building. The emphasis is on as much hand construction as possible utilizing (for example) planes, chisels and gouges so that one learns in great detail the use of these tools in constructing fine furniture. I have to say I not only enjoy Lonnie and Jason, but all the woodworkers with whom I have shared a class. It is a testimonial to the quality of instruction and projects that so many fine people attend year after year.

Don M., Woodworker in Montana

There is only so much that you can learn by reading or watching videos, and at times its very confusing with the amount of different methods and miss-information out there on the web. It’s invaluable to have someone standing right next to you, helping you to obtain the hand skills needed to mark out dovetails accurately, saw to a line and also chisel to a line, to make tight dovetail every time.

Peter A., Woodworker in Texas

You are a great teacher and have tremendous woodworking talent and communication skills, along with a great personality!  All this made my class at your woodworking school a fantastic experience. Thanks!

Ron N., Woodworker in Virginia

Hi Lonnie,
Thank you! First of all, I had fun at the woodworking class. Your concept of having the wood milled so students can learn new skills is perfect!  I now have the confidence that my dovetailing abilities will finally advance to where I want them to be. Thanks for sharing your tools — and your woodworking knowledge. I’m obviously sold on your woodworking methods and school. I’m excited to see how my furniture making skills progress during the coming year.
Take care,
Ken N., Woodworker in Pennsylvania

Lonnie has a lot of patience and works diligently with those who have a lesser woodworking skill set.
Gary J., Woodworker in South Carolina

Hi Lonnie,

As usual I thoroughly enjoyed the class and I always come away learning new ideas and techniques. Thanks again for a week of great instruction and fellowship.

Take care, Phil K., Woodworker in Indiana

Hi Lonnie,

I just wanted to write you a letter to thank you for the wonderful week that I had at the recent Woodworking Essentials class. I am just now coming down from a “Lonnie Bird High.” If we could package this feeling up and sell it we would have a gold mine! I consider this one of the best learning experience that I have ever had—NO EXCEPTIONS. To be able to teach students to understand how to do something, and then do it is truly a gift and you have it.
It seems that everything we did was to benefit our learning experience and there was no busywork. I feel that I certainly got MORE than my money’s worth. The facilities at your woodworking school are first rate and that just added to the learning experience. The patience that you showed and the praise that you showed, when deserved, went a long way to enhance my confidence in my ability. I cannot wait to take more furniture making classes.
Again, thanks for everything and especially the newfound confidence that I can someday build fine furniture.
Yours very truly,
George Wynn, Woodworking Student in Virginia


Recently you asked me to report to you on how I found the “Woodworking Essentials” class at Lonnie Bird’s School of Fine Woodworking.  In a nutshell, it was superb! When Lonnie advertises five full days of instruction, he doesn’t mean stopping at noon or so on the last day, and he doesn’t stop work for “bushwa sessions”. Each day was filled with furniture making demonstrations, hands-on work with hand tools, and technical discussions on style, tools, wood finishing, etc.
At nine people, the class is small enough for Lonnie to move from student to student, answering questions and providing one-on-one woodworking instruction and demos.
One day during the week, we went on a tour in Lonnie’s house where he showed us examples of his furniture. The case pieces are breath-taking – not only for the fabulous wood but for the superb craftsmanship. The tour truly helps certify Lonnie’s credentials as a woodworker. The man knows what he teaches, and proved it time and again.
If I had to pick one word to describe what I got out of Lonnie’s class, the word would be “precision.” He taught us we could do good woodworking, beautiful woodworking, but more importantly, precise woodworking. Tenons that fit like a hand in a glove. Dovetails that are clean and gap free – made by sawing to a line and with minimal fitting. Planed surfaces that are dead flat and which require no sanding, unless you prefer the feel of the sanded surface. You will leave with a sense of confidence that you can reproduce the high quality of work you have done in the class.
As you can tell, I am still very up from this furniture making class. I recommend that you email Lonnie at lonniebird@earthlink.net and ask him to put you on his email list.
Have a great day!
Alexander Steel, Woodworker in Alabama

I want to take a minute and thank you once again for the great time I had last week in the Woodworking Essentials class. I felt more like a guest in your home than a student who took a class at your school. I have already told several of my friends about the woodworking school. Also please pass along again my sincere thanks to your family. I appreciate so much the good food and great atmosphere. I haven’t been able to put your woodworking books down for long since I have been home. They answer a lot of my questions, and were well worth the money.
Well, thanks again so much for everything, and I look forward to attending a class next year, either the spice box or blanket chest, so please don’t forget me.
Art Overmyer, Woodworker in Indiana

Hi Lonnie,

I want to say again how much I enjoyed the Woodworking Essentialsclass. I learned a lot in those six days. My newly found woodworking skills will forever change both the way I approach woodworking, and the way I perform my craft. Thanks for the experience.

Timothy Neal, Woodworker in Pennsylvania

PS: The website looks great…the best class photo I ever saw! I was honored to see several other photos of myself on the site also. Thanks.

Hi Lonnie;

I just wanted to thank you for a wonderful learning experience. I learned more in one week at our furniture making class than in the past twenty years of being self taught. Looking forward to next your woodworking class.


Phil McConnell, Woodworker in Georgia


Thanks again for a great week! I learned an incredible amount about woodworking and furniture making in a short time and had a wonderful time doing it.

Thanks, Charlie Holt, Woodworker in Colorado


Billy and I had an unforgettable experience last week in Dandridge at your furniture making school. We’re going to enjoy woodworking for a long time to come. We’d like to set up our own little wood shop and develop our skills over the next few months and return next year for the joinery class. I know demand is great so I’ll watch closely for next year’s schedule.

Lonnie, I want to thank you again for your patience and for your hospitality. Thank you for letting us see the furniture pieces in your home. Thank you for your high standards and for such a quality experience.

Allan K., Woodworker in Tennessee

Hi Lonnie,

Thanks for a great week I could not have been happier the way my dovetails turned out. I was thrilled with the first fit on Friday of the actual drawer – thanks for your direction and words of encouragement.

I plan on cutting a bunch of dovetails in the upcoming months to prepare for the next woodworking class. As I prepare for my upcoming projects, I will look for ways to include the dovetail joint.

The week at your furniture making school was everything I expected and more. I will now expect a higher level of perfection in my woodworking. During the week, I gained a great appreciation for hand tools. Before last week, I thought you needed a motorized piece of equipment to obtain the perfection we achieved in the class.

Thanks again and I can not wait until the next woodworking class!

Jerry, Woodworker in Wyoming


I really enjoyed our class on Woodworking Essentialslast week and am very glad I attended. I know I will be much better prepared for any future furniture making classes with you.

Many thanks for a very interesting and fun week.

Jim Barton, Woodworker in Indiana

Hi Lonnie,
This woodworking class had the best expert-to-student ratio of any class I have ever attended. I would definitely recommend this furniture making class to anyone!
Andrew C., Woodworker in Kentucky

If you’ve seen Lonnie’s furniture, then you know he is a true master craftsman.  His teaching has the same attention to detail but with a bit of humor added in for fun. After all, woodworking should be fun!
Steve C., Woodworker in Alabama

Hi Lonnie,
Your woodworking class more than met my expectations – I’ve already recommended your furniture making school to others! Your woodworking education has set me on the right path to becoming an accomplished woodworker. It is great to leave a legacy in life through creating furniture for future generations. Hopefully, with your guidance, I will be able to make some of those furniture pieces, such as the blanket chest. Thanks, Lonnie!
Mike H., Woodworker in South Carolina

Hi Lonnie,

It was a pleasure and a privelege to be able to spend time with you and be taught by you. Many can teach furniture building but I am not sure that there are many (or any others) who raise it to the level of craft and artform that you do – remarkable and exciting to see.
Roger L., Woodworker in North Carolina