Victorian School of Woodcraft

The VWA School of Woodcraft has been teaching students for over 20 years from our well equipped workshop training facilities at the historic Meat Market building in North Melbourne.

Each student chooses their own project to work on and is provided with expert guidance from our experienced master woodworkers. We cater to all skill levels from novices who want to learn basic techniques to professionals who are seeking to refine their craft.

Our classes have been designed to cater for students with varied levels of woodwork skills. There are no formal qualifications to qualify for enrolment.

2020 Class student project
2021 Class student project

Projects

The classes centre around projects chosen by the student. They are then carefully curated by our teachers and designed in a way that helps students walk away with a set of skills as well as a finished piece of fine woodwork. Some projects may take more than one term.

In either case, students should bring an illustrative (plan, photo or drawing) and short textual description of their project, with measurements to enable specification of a timber cutting list.

Some students stay only as long as it takes to complete one specific project. Others set themselves a series of projects so their woodwork skills increase over time.

We also have a Fixed Project Class featuring a beautifully designed night stand which gives students an opportunity to learn a variety of skills from traditional hand cut joinery to more modern woodworking techniques. The joinery on the night stand involves the use of hand tools such as chisels and hand planes whilst at the same time introducing students to more modern approaches to curved detail work. Students also learn about a variety of finishes that can be used.

Tutor with limited class number
One on one support

Tutors

The tutors assist students at all stages from project design, choice of timber, construction, finishing, safe work practices and, when required, machine operation.

Class numbers are limited to ensure tutors can provide each student with guidance. There is no predetermined date for completion of projects and enrolment is on a term by term basis. Support will be tailored to suit the requirements of each project and the competence of each student.

Note, however, that tutors are a shared resource to the whole class and you are expected to operate with a degree of independence after being shown how to perform a task.

Support will be tailored to suit the requirements of each project and the competence of each student.
Class equipment

Timber and Equipment

Students are responsible for purchasing their own timber and organising for it to be transported to the workshop. The suitability of the timber and fittings will be discussed with the tutor to ensure they are appropriate for the chosen project. Students will then be responsible for purchasing their own timber and organising for it to be transported to the workshop.
 
Tools and equipment are provided. The school also supplies consumables such as glue, sandpaper, timber filler, screws, finish, masks and protective equipment. The student may also supply their own finish – oil or lacquer.

The right tools for the right job
Victorian School of Woodcraft protective clothing
Protective clothing suitable for a workshop environment

Protective Clothing

Clothing and footwear should be suitable for a workshop environment (but not heavy industrial), providing protection against wood chips, dropped objects, and spills or splashes of varnishes and glues, while hair should be restrained or covered to avoid entanglement with machinery. Open toed shoes are never acceptable and students will not be permitted entry to the workshop if these are worn.

Note – Fees are inclusive of insurance, supervision of, and induction in, OHS practices for machine operation.

Safety

The VWA has produced a number of videos about workshop safety and safe use of machinery.

General Workshop Safety
Panel Saw
Sawstop Tablesaw

Contact Us

Victorian Woodworkers Association (VWA)
Postal Address

42 Courtney St,
North Melbourne, VIC 3051
03 5776 2178

VWA Wood Design Centre and Workshop

5 Tyrone St,
North Melbourne, VIC 3051
View map

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You can also get in contact using the form and we will make sure your message gets to the right person.

Please note that because we are a volunteer organisation, we sometimes cannot respond to you as fast as we would like and it may take a few days to get back to you.

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