20 Most Profitable Woodworking Projects to Build & Sell in 2020
Having a side hustle is a great way to earn extra cash these days with skills you’ve honed through the pursuit of hobbies. Few of them are as popular right now as making things with your hands. They’re technical skills, however, things that not everyone has and not everyone has the time to learn.
Woodworking projects are a particularly lucrative way to earn extra money. People love decorating their living spaces and giving gifts that have that individual touch to them, because really everyone is out for that one thing that is especially exquisite.
Here are a collection of things you can make with your hands that are likely to be especially popular this year, and profitable for you the DIY enthusiast. They include their own instructions and list of hardware and materials you need to make them. If you’ve got a little skill, feel free to use them as guides, and allow your own creativity to flow.
1. Beer caddy
One thing that’s always going to be a hit is mixing the craftsmanship of good beer with quality woodworking. Sitting back and pouring yourself a great beer feels a little more sophisticated when you pull the bottle out of a handmade caddy. This one is a good bet to be a big hit if you’re looking to make some extra money building things with wood.
This is the sort of project that will require a little precision, so you’ll want to have some instructions on hand to follow. This is a good set. Don’t be afraid to test out different stains to finish it. A dark, smoky one will complement your beers excellently.
2. Wine bottle and glasses holder
Perfect for the sophisticated set who like to take a sunny afternoon on the patio with a plate of cheese and some clever conversation, this is a simple construction that still requires enough skills to make precision cuts and enough taste to know how much is just enough. It also requires power tools, so that adds to the depth of construction.
Because it requires some precision, a good set of instructions like these will come in handy. As long as you know what you’re doing, however, you can scale this project for a good variety. That means a wider opportunity to make money making these.
3. Cell phone charging station/dresser valet
Modern and graceful, making a combination cell phone charger/dresser valet is an excellent way to maximize the money you can make with your hands. It’s not terribly complicated, but it offers a kind of elegant organization that makes it a perfect gift.
You will want to make sure that you’re pretty sure about how you build this. No one is going to want to buy an uneven dresser caddy. Here’s a good set of them, and it includes the materials and hardware necessary to put it together.
4. Wall-mounted wine bottle and glass holder
Here’s a simple, but elegant way to make money working with wood. The materials are pretty simple, just a couple of planks available at your local lumber store, but put it together right and you’ve got something that people will want to keep their favorite bottle of red at the ready.
While it’s a simple design, with only simple materials and hardware necessary. That also makes it perfect to amend the dimensions for bigger or smaller racks to put variety in your inventory. A good set of instructions are handy to have on hand to help you properly do that. Here is a good set of them, with instructions on how to make it.
5. Bedside box
Once you get the hang of building these, you can crank out these elegant-looking boxes that are themselves pretty cheap to construct. Plus, you can start working on different sizes and use different stains to make the most of your wood and maximize your profits.
What you’ll really love are the very clear, precise instructions here. Even if you don’t have very well honed wood working skills, these are good enough for anyone who’s put together a model kit.
6. Beer bottle box
and rustic looking, these wooden beer boxes are cheap to make and have a homey-rustic look about them. They can either be used to carry around beer or soda pop, or you can fill them with empties and leave them around as decorations. These are cheap enough to make that you can sell them as either.
Despite the fact that these look rustic, they do require some precision to make sure you can fit all the bottles into the right size space. Here’s a good set of instructions to help you get the dimensions right.
7. Wall planter for succulents
This one is complicated enough that you need real skills and tools to make it, but the materials are inexpensive enough that if you have both you can make a good amount of money making these homes for popular and easy-to-care-for succulents. Just let your customers know that those, of course, come extra.
Because you need holes the right size and precise angles, you’ll want instructions on how to make these. This is a good set of them. It is mostly pictures instead of words, so be warned about that.
8. Bathtub caddy
What are people willing to pay a few bucks extra for? Something to help them relax, and there is no place they need more help doing that than in the bathtub. The combination of soap and bubbles aren’t good for electronics or candles or even that glass of wine.
While people could use something as crude as a board across the tub, your skills means that you can offer them something a little more sophisticated. Here is a good start to finding the right plans for you.
9. Simple jewelry box
These are a little more than simple. They’ve got a bit of sophistication to them, yet they aren’t terribly expensive to make. We’d like it more if jewelry boxes were more versatile, but you can make a good chunk of change with the right design.
To that end, you’ll want a good set of plans, like these. Once you figure out how they work, you can freelance off the plans and make your own designs.
10. Candle holder
These are complicated beyond the skills of most people, but if you have the tools and abilities to make them, these are an elegant way to show those off. The materials are also cheap enough that you can maximize the return on your investment of money and talents.
You’ll want instructions to help you make these, and these are good ones to follow. It not just lets you know how to bore out the space for the candle, but how to properly stain them.
11. Vertical planter with house numbers
One thing that’s always popular are ways to individualize someone’s home, and you can do that with these vertical cedar planks with house numbers and a planter for succulents or annuals depending on where you live. You can even sell the frames and let homeowners get their own numbers.
These are a simple construction, but a good set of plans will give you a good idea of what materials and hardware you’ll need to make them. Once you have the basic design down, you can start amending your original plans.
12. Utensil carrier
A caddy is always a useful thing to have around, and you can make them either for utensils so that you’ve got silverware always ready for the table, or cleaning supplies for daily chores. The only drawback is that most people probably don’t want to spend a lot to buy something like that, so these are attractive and useful but maybe not as profitable as some of our other projects.
You could always go for volume because the materials are affordable and the instructions on how to make them simple enough to follow. One other advantage is that you don’t need to spend a lot on materials to get something that looks nice.
13. Pallet coasters
Upcycling from pallets was a pretty big thing a few years ago, and interest in it has fallen off. The reason for that, however, is that pallet wood projects look rough and unrefined, a perfect thing to kind of project a sense of impoverished ingenuity. But coasters are small enough that you can lose that you got your raw materials largely for free, especially if appropriately painted.
Because these are made with pallet wood, these are perfect to start with a basic plan and evolve what you make to suit sharpened skills. Plus, because they’re coasters, people need several for them to make any visual effect, so where you’re likely to make your money is selling several of them at once.
14. Wine rack
In 2018, the US wine market was worth over $70 billion. People love their wine, but it’s used as more than just a drink. People love to show off their wine bottles as decorations. So, why not take advantage of this by creating beautiful, unique wine racks and selling them for some side cash?
There are dozens of different ways to build a wine rack. The possibilities are only as limited as your imagination. But to get you started, here are some great plans for an attractive wine rack that can easily be built with a few simple tools and some basic woodworking skills.
15. Coat racks
At some point in the year, people in most places need to wear a coat or jacket to keep warm. This makes coat racks a necessity for just about everyone. Whether you want to build a standing coat rack or a hanging one, the options are wide open.
These plans are a great way to get started with building wall-mounted coat racks. There’s even a shelf incorporated into the top to allow for some extra decorations. This project is pretty simple and can be completed with minimal tools and experience in a short time, offering a better return on your investment of time and materials.
16. Picture frames
When picking a woodworking project that you plan to sell, you want something that will appeal to a wide range of people so you have a larger pool of potential customers to sell to. One thing that everyone has is photographs. Though most of them are digital today, many people still frame their favorites to hang in their homes.
Picture frames can take on a whole lot of different looks. You can make them as intricate or as basic as your skill level allows. These plans include three different ways to make a picture frame, allowing you to choose the method that looks most comfortable for you.
17. Pet house
Pets are big business. In the US, 67% of households own pets. That adds up to about 85 million families of pet owners. And many pet people spoil their animals more than they would ever spoil their children, which means it might not be too hard to find some buyers for a nice, custom-built pet house.
Pet houses can vary drastically. You could build small ones for cats or little dogs or giant ones meant for the biggest canines. This one is a great place to start. It looks excellent and these plans go step by step through the whole process of building it.
18. Porch Swing
When you’re building woodworking projects to sell, you need to make items that have the potential to turn a profit, but you still want to enjoy making them. Larger items like this porch swing will sell for a much higher price than smaller items. Granted, they’ll also take longer to build, but the reward is greater as well.
This project is going to take more skills than some of the smaller items like picture frames. But if you’ve got the necessary abilities and tools, then this project could help pad your wallet pretty nicely.
19. Storage beds
Storage beds offer a great way for people who live in smaller homes to maximize their space. Especially with today’s trend towards tiny homes and alternative living, this type of furniture is becoming more desirable. The best part is that such a large custom item will command a great price, making the project truly worth the time and effort.
These storage bed plans are a great place to get started. But make no mistake, this isn’t a project for a woodworking rookie. You’re going to need plenty of skills and tools to complete a project of this size. But if you can do it, then the rewards will be great.
20. Knife block
Everybody who cooks has to use knives at some point. They’re a staple in every kitchen, and that makes a knife block a great project to build with the intent to sell. Even though a custom-made knife block looks elegant and sleek, they’re not very difficult to build. And if you make one that people like, you could easily sell it online since they’re small enough to ship.
This four-tiered knife block looks incredible and it’s made from a single wooden board and a piece of aluminum angle. And here’s a tip: purchase a knife set that looks great in the block and you can sell them together for even more!
- 1. Beer caddy
- 2. Wine bottle and glasses holder
- 3. Cell phone charging station/dresser valet
- 4. Wall-mounted wine bottle and glass holder
- 5. Bedside box
- 6. Beer bottle box
- 7. Wall planter for succulents
- 8. Bathtub caddy
- 9. Simple jewelry box
- 10. Candle holder
- 11. Vertical planter with house numbers
- 12. Utensil carrier
- 13. Pallet coasters
- 14. Wine rack
- 15. Coat racks
- 16. Picture frames
- 17. Pet house
- 18. Porch Swing
- 19. Storage beds
- 20. Knife block