2020 Introduction to Woodworking for Women

Project for this workshop: Side-table
Size: 14" x 14" top, 17" high.
Table top: reclaimed oak from skid. Apron and shelf: pine from farm. Legs: black cherry and alder from farm.
Cut nails; Linseed oil finish.
Participant's project will vary in size and materials.

This introduction to woodworking workshop is designed and taught by a woman for women. Held on the farm, this workshop aims to provide a safe place for women to develop confidence, learn woodworking skills and to share ideas.

This workshop will cover the fundamentals about woodworking:
+ about wood
+ about design
+ safe tool use (cutting and joining)
+ finishes

The idea is to give you a general understanding of building structures made out of wood and how to do it safely and successfully. To help you more fully understand these principles, each participant will be building her own side-table which you can take home!

This is an introductory workshop. Participants do not have to have any skills or knowledge about wood or working with wood. You are not required to have your own tools but we do suggest bringing what you have access to (suggested tool list below). We can teach you about your tools as you grow accustomed to and confident in their uses.

This workshop is open to all types of women and those who identify as women. We do not discriminate and we expect all participants to likewise be open and accepting.


+ Workshops are held over TWO consecutive days, over one weekend.
+ Women and female-identified people only. Must be 18 years of age or older.
+ Limit of 8 participants per workshop.
+ Dress appropriately for the weather. We will be working outside under a shelter with protection from direct rain and sun.

Time: 10AM to 6PM, Saturday and Sunday


Cost: TBD per person (includes materials) plus HST
Please Note:
- No children are allowed on the farm during workshop hours.
- No pets are allowed on the farm at any time.
- Meals are NOT provided. We recommend bringing a bagged lunch.
There are some restaurants in Kinmount (15 minute drive). We aim for a one hour lunch break.
- Participants are allowed to camp on the farm. Please let us know. We cannot provide any camping equipment.
- Other accommodations in the area include cottages, motels and local b n' b.
Mandatory Safety Equipment:
+ Safety Glasses (eye protection)
+ Ear protection - in-ear or over-ear
+ Respiratory protection (dust mask)
+ Comfortable clothing you do not mind getting dirty/dusty
+ Comfortable closed-toe shoes (no sandals)
+ Hair ties or hat to keep hair back
+ Sunscreen and bug spray
+ Travel/reusable mug for water and tea

Mandatory safety equipment.

Recommended tools.
Below is a list of basic woodworking tools that is useful for both general woodworking and for use around the home. We highly recommend bringing your own tools and to generally, bring what you can.

Recommended Tools

+ Measuring Tape - minimum 16 feet; Imperial measurement or combination of Imperial/Metric
+ Hammer - minimum 16 oz
+ Utility knife
+ Drill - corded or cordless
+ Impact Driver - cordless
+ Driver bits - multiple No. 2 Robinson (square head) bits
+ Circular Saw - 7 1/4" or similar
+ Handsaw - Push or Pull style
+ Combination Square or Speed Square or Framing Square
+ Chisel(s) - set of chisels (1", 3/4", 1/2", 1/4") or just a single one
+ Pencils
+ Tool box to keep all your tools safe and clean

Other Tools
In addition to what is mentioned above, the workshop will also be using 'shop tools' such as table saw, compound miter saw ("chop saw"), 13" planer, biscuit jointer, band saw and other assorted tools and devices.
All wood, fasteners (screws, nails, etc.) and some finishes (sandpaper, oils, stains) are provided for with your workshop fees. All the wood that you will build with comes from the farm (milled on the farm from various species such as eastern white pine, eastern white cedar, black cherry, poplar and elm) or salvaged from other buildings, scrap piles and skids/pallets. Emphasis is placed on non-toxic materials and sustainable practices.

If you have wood or other materials you would like to use, please let us know so we can accommodate for them in the design. Feel free to bring special mementos to incorporate into your side-table.
How to Register
1. Email us! workshops(a)

Please let us know the following:
+ Name
+ Contact (email and phone)
+ Date of workshop preference
+ Will you be camping?

2. Wait for email confirmation.

3. Pay non-refundable $50 deposit (etransfer or cheque) to secure your spot.

4. Pay remaining fee before or at workshop (etransfer, cheque or cash).

Introduction to woodworking for women, 2010 in Toronto.



Ali in her element.
About Your Instructor, Ali Lam
Ali's passion for wood and woodworking started during her 2007 apprenticeship in timber framing in Massachusetts and has only grown over the years.

Returning to Ontario, she was a general contractor and designer, specializing in custom straw bale and timber frame homes. From 2012 to 2016, she was the Program Coordinator and Principal Instructor at Fleming College's Sustainable Building Design and Construction Program. She has also taught workshops in natural building (Econest homes - light straw clay building methods; Southwestern Ontario), women-focused bicycle maintenance workshops (Wenches with Wrenches; Toronto), and other women and carpentry workshops in Toronto.

Currently, she is focused on expanding the infrastructure on the farm and building soil. With time and patience, she hopes to make and sell custom furniture and to further integrate her blacksmith items into this venture.

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