Ben's Woodshop Wisdom Signs Explained

Establishing your workshop can be overwhelming whether you're a master craftsman or simply picking up a hobby. One of the essential needs is the encouragement to keep going when the saw gets dull and the hours get long. 

Our favorite sayings have comforted many a woodworker over the years. It might be time to hang these signs in your wood shop, too! Some might sound familiar and a little foreign, but never fear! Josh Nowell, one of the Scotsman woodworkers on Home Town, is happy to let you in on a few of our most used wood shop lingo. 

You Can Never Have Enough Clamps

Josh says, "In woodworking, it's common to only grab three or four clamps for your build, and you think you got enough. And there's all you always need to grab one more. So go ahead and grab the extra clamp before you start."

Shop Clamps Woodshop Sign 

 A Craftsman Never Blames His Tools

This old proverb is said of someone who could have performed a job better but lays blame on his tools rather than taking responsibility for their failure. Don't get us wrong, we believe in good quality tools, but we also think hard work gets you far. See Ben's favorite Scotsman Apron and Estwing Hammer.

Shop Craftsman Sign 

 Measure Once, Cuss Twice

Josh explains, "During a season of Home Town, we had finished some builds for an episode, and we had a mismeasurement of the room. On the day of filming, it wouldn't fit through the door because we didn't measure the door. So we've learned that you should measure twice. It makes life a lot less frustrating."  

Measure Once, Cuss Twice 

Don't Spit on the Floor

Around the turn of the 20th century, in rural Mississippi and even New York, restaurants and other establishments used signs that would tell people, "Don't spit on the floor." Instead, you would spit into the spittoon.

Josh says, "Our Scotsman General Store was an old feed store built in the early 1920s. That building was torn down, and this one was rebuilt in the 1960s. There were signs and markings all over the building, and that was one of the common phrases seen in public spaces from that time, say the 1920s and even 1880s."

Don't Spit Sign

A Bad Day Woodworking Is Still A Good Day

A self-explanatory phrase, but even the worst days in the shop are better than anywhere else. For a skilled woodworker, there's always a lesson learned, and no creative endeavor is wasted. 

Shop Good Day Sign

Get An Early Start Tomorrow by Cleaning Your Work Station Today

Josh says, "We've always loved the iconic Mather Work Incentive Posters from the early 20th century. We created this one as an ode to those put in factories and shops around the country."

Early Start Sign

It's Not A Mistake, It's A Design Feature

Woodworking design is hard work and risky business. Since the best result is found "in the details," what do you do with mistakes? Some of the best woodwork have unintentional marks in the wood or aesthetic features that add to the piece and never take away. This is your sign to own your mistakes! 

It's Not A Mistake Sign

A Dusty Shop is A Loved Shop

An expression that makes us feel better about not cleaning the sawdust off the floor, but a true one nonetheless. You'll rarely find a good woodworker in a perfectly clean woodshop. This is your sign to keep the cuts clean and the floors dirty. 

Dusty Shop Sign

There's no doubt that there will be some hardship and frustration in the wood shop, but with the right tools, a good design plan, and a little wisdom, there's nothing too challenging to build. 


Browse Scotsman Woodshop Collection