The number of women working in the traditionally male-dominated fields of construction and manufacturing is rising, albeit at a slow pace. That includes specialty trades within building and finishing, like carpentry, where women held 13.4% of all jobs in 2020 (a 3.1 percentage point gain since 1990), and flooring, which has seen the biggest increase in female workers overall at 21.6% total (6.39 points higher than 1990.) But a considerable pay gap remains, with full-time wage and salary workers receiving 82% of men’s salaries in comparable positions.
One way to keep bridging that gap is to simply support women in these trades. Social media makes it easier than ever to find women woodworkers, for instance, and follow all the amazing things they create. Hardware manufacturer Accuride recently rounded up a list of 10 female woodworkers you need to know about. Here are four of those women – check out the rest at Accuride.
Alma Rosa Villalobos, Pink Soul Studios
Offering custom woodworking and CNC services, Alma Rosa Villalobos builds fun stuff like tables, record storage cabinets, signs and tools. She also sells plans for some of her designs, and has a helpful list of the tools and equipment she prefers on her website, for anyone who wants to learn from her example.
Brittany Bailey, Pretty Handy Girl
“My mantra is that if someone can do it, then there is a 95% chance that I can do it too!” says Brittany Bailey, a.k.a. Pretty Handy Girl. Bailey is a licensed general contractor, artist and designer whose goal is to smash stereotypes that women can’t handle their own repairs, upgrades or DIY projects. She offers detailed tutorials for all kinds of projects on Instagram and on her website.
Claire Baldwin, Polish & Power Tools
Based in Nashville, Claire Baldwin began her woodworking journey by building a simple coffee table for her apartment. She fell in love with the process and started her own business, Polish & Power Tools, crafting desks, cabinets, shelves, tabletops, wall art and more. “The more I learn, the more I can hone in on the art of building fine furniture & home decor,” she says. “I find joy in creating and helping others fill their home with heirloom pieces that are constructed to last a lifetime.”
Jen Woodhouse, House of Wood
Jen Woodhouse is a self-taught carpenter who tackles everything from small decorative items to timber frame pergolas. In between completing her own projects, she offers in-depth tutorials for anyone who’s ready to roll up their sleeves and get to work and documents her adventures in design, woodworking and home renovation projects. Her website is jam-packed with projects laid out in a way that’s easy to understand, even if you don’t have a lot of experience.