Cabinet & Furniture Making

Our two-year Cabinet & Furniture Making program teaches fine craftsmanship through projects incorporating 18th- and 19th-century furniture examples. With these traditional models as a foundation, you鈥檒l be able to design and build furnishings of any era you choose.

As a custom furniture maker at 四虎影院, you鈥檒l learn how to use and maintain both hand tools and power equipment. You鈥檒l estimate costs, choose materials, and prepare working drawings for each project. You鈥檒l cut various joints, turn, carve, and bend wood, apply marquetry or veneers. You鈥檒l develop the knowledge, skills, and confidence necessary to create thoughtful furniture pieces to exacting standards.

The expansive program space includes a large bench room, demonstration area, library, lathe room, and finishing room. Students take regular field trips to view private and museum collections, and to visit the shops of prominent local woodworkers.

Schedule & Curriculum

We accept qualified applicants throughout the year. The program is extremely competitive and fills quickly, so you should apply as early as possible. Successful applicants usually have demonstrated hand skills, some previous woodworking experience is also helpful.

  • Students are admitted in September and February.
  • Classes meet 8:00 am – 3:00 pm, Monday – Friday, September through May.
  • The program length is two, nine-month academic years (72 weeks or 2340 class hours*).
  • The maximum enrollment is 37 students.
  • Students who complete the program receive a Diploma of Cabinet & Furniture Making.

* Class hours equals clock hours

Careers

Graduates of our Cabinet & Furniture Making program work in a wide variety of careers, from running independent custom shops, to conserving pieces in historic collections, to working for larger manufacturers, contractors, or designers.

Our alumni write articles and books on furniture making, they present at shows and conferences, and they help educate the next generation as faculty of woodworking programs and schools. Notably, the Society of Period American Furniture Makers has presented the prestigious to four of our graduates, and to the School as well.

Some of our graduates have worked as:

  • Furniture conservators at national museums
  • Furniture and prototype makers for high-end furniture manufacturers
  • Owners of furniture design and building shops
  • Managers of residential renovations for top designers and architects
  • Construction managers for 9000 sqft apartment building
  • Lead carpenters, site superintendents, and senior project managers
  • Antique furniture restorers and furniture builders
  • Restoration carpenters
  • Woodworking teachers
  • Managers of cabinet shops for custom home builders
  • Installers for high-end kitchens for custom designers
  • Architectural woodworkers
  • Boat builders and yacht interior joiners
  • Board drafters for period residential furniture
  • Cabinet Department Supervisors
  • Prototype Makers
  • Design Associates for high-end interior designers
  • Managers of Product Engineering

Below we鈥檝e gathered general information on wages, salaries, and industry growth for cabinet and furniture makers. Keep in mind that job classifications from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) do not exactly match the skills you鈥檝e learned at the School.

The DOL lists the job classifications 鈥,鈥 and 鈥.鈥澛

The DOL classifies Cabinetmakers and Bench Carpenters this way:

Cut, shape, and assemble wooden articles or set up and operate a variety of woodworking machines, such as power saws, jointers, and mortisers to surface, cut, or shape lumber or to fabricate parts for wood products.

The DOL classifies Furniture Finishers this way:

Shape, finish, and refinish damaged, worn, or used furniture or new high-grade furniture to specified color or finish.

The DOL also includes the job classification 鈥淲oodworking,鈥 which includes mass production/unskilled workers and subcategories like model makers and patternmakers; woodworking machine setters, operators, and tenders.

The information below is from the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics:

  • Cabinetmakers and Bench Carpenters held about 93,070 jobs as of May 2021.
  • Furniture Finishers held about 16,300 jobs as of May 2021.

Employment of cabinetmakers and bench carpenters is expected to rise 8.8% during the 2020-30 decade. Employment of furniture finishers is expected to rise 5.8% during the 2020-30 decade. In general, opportunities will be better for highly skilled woodworkers than for those with specialties susceptible to automation and competition from imported wood products.

For more detailed information, see the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics about , , and .

There are many factors that determine specific salaries, including education, training, years and type of experience, and others.

The Department of Labor (DOL) estimates that in 2021:

  • The median salary for cabinet and bench carpenters was $40,070 and the hourly wage was $19.27. 
  • The median salary for furniture finishers was $37,310 and the hourly wage was $17.94. 
  • The median salary for woodworkers was $36,710 per year and the hourly wage $17.65.

For more detailed information, visit the .

13:1
Student to Faculty ratio
2x
Scholarship money awarded has doubled over the last 5 years
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Handcut dovetails in each student’s tool chest

People

Faculty

Cabinet & Furniture Making Instructor

Cabinet & Furniture Making Instructor

Cabinet & Furniture Making Instructor

Cabinet & Furniture Making Department Head

Cabinet & Furniture Making Instructor

Guest Lecturers & Instructors

In addition to the regular faculty, we often have established artisans and historians visit the School to lead workshops. Some of our recent guests include:

  • , an expert carver
  • , a 17th-century joinery expert
  • Eli Cleveland CF 鈥09, a graduate, custom furniture maker, and Community Education Instructor
  • , a curator for Concord Museum
  •  CF 鈥88, a cabinet maker and graduate of the School
  • , master chairmaker
  •  CF 鈥19, a graduate and custom furniture maker who excels at marquetry

Explore the Facilities

The expansive program space includes a large bench room, demonstration area, library, lathe room, and finishing room. Students take regular field trips to view private and museum collections and to visit the shops of prominent local woodworkers.

Additional Information

2021 Cabinet & Furniture Making Graduate & Employment Report

  • This data represents 21 total Cabinet & Furniture Making students who started the program in February 2018 and had an intended graduation date of February 2020, or who started the program in September 2018 and had an intended graduation date of June 2020.
  • 76% of the students in these cohorts graduated in 2020.
  • 75% of these graduates are employed in the field.
  • This data was officially reported to ACCSC in October 2021.

2022 Cabinet & Furniture Making Graduate & Employment Report

  • This data represents 22 total Cabinet & Furniture Making students who started the program in February 2019 and had an intended graduation date of February 2021, or who started the program in September 2019 and had an intended graduation date of June 2021.
  • 68% of the students in these cohorts graduated in 2021.
  • 71% of these graduates are employed in the field.
  • This data was officially reported to ACCSC in October 2022.

2023 Cabinet & Furniture Making Graduate & Employment Report

  • This data represents 19 total Cabinet & Furniture Making students who started the program in February 2020 and had an intended graduation date of February 2022, or who started the program in November 2020 and had an intended graduation date of July 2022.
  • 68% of the students in these cohorts graduated in 2022.
  • 83% of these graduates are employed in the field.
  • This data was officially reported to ACCSC in October 2023.

This disclosure is required by our accreditors, the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools & Colleges (ACCSC).

For each of our career training programs, we consult with a group of top professionals in the field to ensure our curriculum continues to meet industry needs and trends.

The Cabinet & Furniture Making Program Advisors are:

  • Eli Cleveland CF 鈥09
  • William Doub CF 鈥74
  • Sean Fisher CF 鈥94
  • Brian Kelly CF 鈥84
  • John McCormack CF 鈥88
  • Gregory Porfido CF 鈥89

Questions?

Contact Rob O鈥橠wyer, Director of Admissions, at 617-227-0155 x111 or聽admissions@nbss.edu.