8 Different Types of Wood Carving (With Pictures)

Wooden carving is a exclusive artform employing different tactics to generate gorgeous sculptures and decorations with wood. It is been popular for centuries and continues to be right now.

In this write-up, we’ll appear at eight distinct kinds of wood carving, as properly as the tactics, instruments, and wood employed for carving. Let’s get commenced!

Before You Begin:

Regardless of the wooden carving technique you choose, there are some crucial guidelines to contemplate just before beginning your very first carving project. First of all, you want to shield your palms and eyes. Wooden carving instruments are typically extremely sharp, and small chips of the wood you’re operating with could possibly get in your eyes. Always put on safety gloves and eye goggles to protect oneself from attainable harm.

Usually keep your tools sharp since they will be a lot more effective and considerably less complicated to use, and if you’re a very first-time woodcarver, pick softwoods and attempt basic initiatives right up until you boost your capabilities.

The 8 Types of Wood Carving

1. Whittling

8 Different Types of Wood Carving (With Pictures)
Examples of whittling (Image Credit: GWphotograph, Wikimedia Commons CC SA 4.0 International)
Tools and equipment Sharp knife designed for whittling
Wood type Pine, Balsa, Basswood

Whittling is a basic wooden carving technique, but it can be quite difficult. It’s a passion for a lot of folks who appreciate creating fascinating wood sculptures. Whittlers largely use softwoods this kind of as Pine, Balsa, or Basswood as they are less complicated to perform with and are wonderful for these beginning their carving journey.

You could use hardwoods, but even whittlers with encounter can have difficulties carving a challenging, dense wood. For whittling, you will need to have a sharp whittling knife to carve and make tiny figures, styles, and objects. Even though chopping, make positive you are slicing absent from the hand, and constantly make positive your whittling knife is sharp ample.

2. Lovespoon Carving

Tools and equipment Wood carving mallet, knives, gouges, chisels
Wood type Oak, Birch, Maple, Walnut

Lovespoon carving has been about for generations, and males in certain traditions have prolonged created lovespoons for their prospective partners to present their desire. It’s a tradition that is stuffed with heritage and concealed meanings.

Nowadays, lovespoon carving is a lot more of a pastime, and lovespoons these days are largely decorative parts to place on screen. Most woodworkers who exercise lovespoon carving do it by hand, even though some use energy instruments for lovespoon carving as well. Lovespoons are typically small spoons with decorative particulars produced from various hardwood species. Each lovespoon is special and there is no pattern for making them, so you can usually include your private contact or stamp.

3. Treen Carving

8 Different Types of Wood Carving (With Pictures)
Treen snuff (Image Credit: Sobebunny, Wikimedia Commons CC SA 3.0 Unported)
Tools and equipment Gouges, chisels, sharpeners
Wood type Oak, Cherry, Beech

Treen carving is a wooden carving method to generate purposeful, small family things. Its literal meaning is “from a tree”. You’ll require standard instruments these kinds of as gouges, chisels, and sharpeners for this wood carving fashion. Treen carving is one of the least difficult wood carving methods, and folks really like the style since the final solution has a beneficial purpose instead than becoming just a decorative piece. You can use all types of wood for it, but it’s best to use hardwoods this kind of as Oak, Cherry, or Beech.

4. Chip Carving

8 Different Types of Wood Carving (With Pictures)
ChipCarving (Image Credit: Jonathunder, Wikimedia Commons CC SA 3.0 Unported)
Tools and equipment Cutting knife, stab knife, sharpening stone, chisels, gouges
Wood type Any wood kind, but the most popular is Linden wood

Chip carving is a wood carving method extremely similar to reduction carving. It’s done on a flat piece of wooden in which you get rid of small chips to develop ornamental, aesthetically satisfying styles. Most folks use simple tools this kind of as a chopping and stab knife for chip carving, although others also use chisels and gouges.

Chip carving is one more excellent hobby for newcomers and it does not require a bunch of pricey resources. One particular important strategy in chip carving is that the blade need to enter the wood at a exactly 65-diploma angle so the cuts meet up with at the suitable stage.

5. Flat-plane Carving

Tools and equipment Cutting knife, gouges
Wood type Basswood

Flat-aircraft carving is a special wooden carving method utilised to develop figures. This carving design is fairly minimalist and comes from Scandinavia, where people have been generating house products and toys with the method for hundreds of years. Although flat-aircraft carving looks simple, it is not that simple in exercise. The major objective of this approach is to use big cuts that are easy and cleanse, which is why it’s far better for seasoned woodcarvers. It’s ideal to use softwoods, like Basswood, for flat-plane carving.

6. Relief Carving

8 Different Types of Wood Carving (With Pictures)
Image Credit: MemoryCatcher, Pixabay
Tools and equipment Chisels, gouges, mallet
Wood type Any wood type, although beginners should use softwoods

Reduction Carving is a wooden carving technique exactly where woodcarvers create reliefs with designs that appear a few-dimensional whilst even now currently being on a flat aircraft. Aid carving is a fantastic hobby that any individual can consider out. It’s completed on a flat piece of wooden, and you can use hardwoods or softwoods to attain this approach, but novices should go for softwoods because they have better workability.

With reduction carving you are only carving inside the flat piece of wooden, but there are a few variants to the technique—low-reduction, high-reduction, and deep-reduction.

7. Chainsaw Carving

8 Different Types of Wood Carving (With Pictures)
Image Credit: Sinawa, Pixabay
Tools and equipment Chainsaw, power supply, grinder
Wood type Pine, Cedar, Fir

Chainsaw carving is a carving fashion the place you use a chainsaw to carve big wooden sculptures with a chainsaw. Chainsaw carving is a fast carving technique, but to do it, you need to be an professional with a chainsaw to avoid injuries. Most people use two distinct saws, a larger 1 for initial cuts and a smaller sized saw for information and retouching.

You can use any type of wooden for this carving technique, although it is advisable to use Pine, Cedar, or Fir. Apart from currently being a pastime, chainsaw carving can be well-paid if you use high-conclude resources and create distinct parts.

8. Pyrography

Tools and equipment Woodburning pen, wet towel
Wood type Any wood type

Pyrography is a wooden carving technique that’s very various to other wooden carving variations. The which means of the term pyrography is “writing with fireplace.” To generate interesting art with pyrography, you’ll need a woodburning pen and a moist towel. Pyrography can be accomplished on any wooden variety, but it is suggested to sand it prior to you begin so that the area is completely clean.

Which wood is best for carving?

All wooden types are employed for carving, so you can select from any offered hardwood or softwood. You are going to want to get the wooden toughness, density, and workability into consideration ahead of you determine, but newbies need to go for softwoods simply because they’re light-weight and effortless to function with. The most generally employed woods are Pine, Cedar, Pine, and Beech, but the wood type you select depends a whole lot on the method due to the fact specified woods are better for particular approaches.

How do I choose wood for carving?

The type of wood you use depends on your capabilities, what you want to accomplish, and the wooden carving strategy you use. You must also feel about exactly where the item you are generating will be utilized. If you are generating some thing like a spoon that can get moist, for example, it’s greatest to pick h2o-resistant hardwoods. Often contemplate the last solution and no matter whether it’ll be functional or not.

If you’re new to woodcarving, it’s very best to begin with softwoods as they are simpler to than hardwoods.

What are the tools commonly used for carving?

Different instruments are used for carving dependent on the method and your choices.

These are some of the most commonly used tools for carving:
  • Chisels
  • Gouges
  • Carving knives
  • V-tools
  • Veiners
  • Wood carving mallets
  • Rasps and rifflers
  • Chainsaws
  • Woodburning pens


Wood carving is a enjoyable way to categorical oneself, be imaginative, and even generate some funds at the very same time. Even if you have in no way tried wooden carving before, there are straightforward methods for novices to get you started right up until you boost your abilities.

Featured Graphic Credit score: shonflare, Pixabay