Advanced furniture makers course

Start dates: January, May, September

The one-year advanced course is aimed at those who may have trained elsewhere or are self taught to an already high standard. If you already feel you know the basics and want to push yourself further and explore your creative side, this course is ideal for you.

You will cover more advanced subjects including mixed media making, computer aided design, model making, metal working including casting theory/comissioning and welding. Business topics can also be covered such as accountancy, legislation, and marketing, which will be helpful areas if you are looking to start your own business. We also take trips to exhibitions and have guest lecturers to teach additional topics.

Four projects are usually completed in the advanced year, and the projects will be designed by you with guidance from your tutors. You will be encouraged to push yourself, explore new techniques and experiment with materials and finishes. Our photographer will produce your portfolio, which you can use to promote your business or gain employment. All of our students also leave with a graded diploma, which can also help you to gain employment.

Hand tool selection – New, old, tuning and sharpening. Use of hand tools and accurate measuring

Glues – Different types, strength comparison, and correct uses.

Abrasives – Different types and correct uses

Machinery – Maintenance, identification, and applications

Health & safety

Hand power tools – Routers, router tables, biscuit jointers, domino jointers, sander, drills

Joints – Cutting, assembly, identification, construction


Jigs and small batch runs

Drawing – Sketching, working drawings, rods, CAD

Cutting lists

Ordering timber – Costing and estimating waste

Timber study – Movement, moisture content, drying, defects, and conversion

External timber yard visit

Veneering – Selection, storage, preparation, hand pressing, vacuum bag

Laminating – Cutting, thicknessing, invisible glue lines

Curves – Steam bending theory, coopering, laminating

Finishing – Types, applications, polishing oils, bleach, colouring

These topics may be studied in addition to core topics, subject to availability and schedules


Steam bending, coopering

Power carving

Material science

Carbon fibre

Design history

Design principals & appreciation


CAD, CNC machines

3D printing and 3D scanning

Mould making for casting in metal and resin



Setting up a workshop – machinery, legislation, dust extraction

Meeting clients and communication

Exhibiting your work – retail, galleries, internet, your own exhibition

Introduction to websites – SEO, marketing, PR

Printed stationery – branding, designing, brochures, business cards, letterheads, drawings, photography

Course cost

50 week course cost: £18,000

Deposit: £3,000

Please contact us for details on the instalments for the remainder of the cost

Other costs

A budget for tools should be allowed, we can advise on what is needed

A budget should also be allowed for materials for your own projects. Materials are provided for small samples and test pieces


Our student intakes are in January, May, and September. Occasionally we can accept students outside of these dates, please email us to enquire about this

Teaching is 9am until 4.30pm

Some out-of-hours and weekend practice time may be available, subject to terms and conditions

Advanced 50 Week Furniture Design & Makers’ Course