What to Look for in a Wood Carving Knife for Beginners?

what to look for in wood carving knives

Hello fellow wood carvers to be! If you have come across our post, you might be considering to try wood carving as your next hobby. As it usually is when starting to learn a new craft, you need the right kind of equipment and material.

When it comes to learning how to work with wood, the essential tool you must have with you is a solid knife. There are different types of knives used for wood carving, as you have probably noticed, and perhaps the exhaustive list of chip carving, spoon carving, sloyd knives, and many others is giving you a headache already.
But, worry not, we are here to help you choose a wood carving knife for beginners, the right tool for the first exciting projects you wish to give a try.

So, let’s check out what are the features of a good wood carving knife for beginners, and what are our top recommendations for your very first carving knife.

How to pick a good wood carving knife for beginners

With any wood carving knife, there are some key features we are checking out that make a quality knife:

  • The handle

    Handle of a wood carving knife needs to be comfortable to hold. You will be spending a couple of hours holding your knife, and the last thing you want is to have hand fatigue after finishing each project. In general, when checking out the quality of the handle for a knife you are purchasing online, be sure that it has an ergonomic design.
    There are handles made in different shapes and sizes, so what you should check is if the handle is fitting for you. It can happen that a handle of a knife has great reviews, but if you have larger hands it would not be the best for you.
    Materials out of which the handle is made also vary, so we have oak handle, walnut, ebony, olive wood, and other hardwood.
  • The blade

    Some might think that a wood carving knife for beginners shouldn’t be very sharp. This is a common misconception. The blades of your carving knives should always be razor-sharp, and as such they are much safer to use.
    Blades of a wood carving knife are usually made of hardened steel, so the features you should check with each product are the durability and whether it holds an edge for a long time.
    Durability of a wood carving knife means it will last for years before you need to replace it with a new one, while if the blade “holds an edge”, it means it stays sharp throughout your carving project and you don’t need to sharpen it frequently.

Our recommendations: wood carving knife for beginners

C2 – Wood Carving Bench Knife


  • For Delicate Wood Carving
  • Ergonomic Handle Allows No Hand Fatigue
  • Razor-Sharp Out of the Box
  • For All Types of Wood
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The ashwood handle of the blade is shaped to be very comfortable and used by both left-handed and right-handed craftsmen. High-carbon steel of the blade is hardened and suitable for both softwood and hardwood projects. 

Straight knife like this with a sharp tip is handy for chip carving projects as well as whittling. This makes it a great choice for your first wood carving knife you can use to try out different carving techniques, even experiment with elephant, owl, dwarf, and other challenging designs.

BeaverCraft – C3 – Small Sloyd Carving Knife

C3 – Small Sloyd Carving Knife


  • Total length – 165 mm (6.49 inches)
  • Blade length – 40 mm (1.57 inches)
  • Blade width – 13 mm (0.51 inches)
  • Handle length – 120 mm (4.72 inches)
SKU: C3 Categories: ,
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When it comes to sloyd knives, the shape of the blade is designed to reach hollow and thin areas, making it your great companion for spoon, detail, chip carving, and especially complex caricature carving projects.

This is a good choice for beginners as it comes in handy for general woodworking, so you can always find use of it around the house as well as in your workshop.

BeaverCraft – C14 – Whittling Knife

C14 – Whittling Knife


  • Total length – 165 mm (6.5 inches)
  • Handle length – 105 mm (4.13 inches)
  • Lenght of the cutting edge – 60 mm (2.36 inches)
  • Handle material – Ashwood
SKU: C14 Categories: ,
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The long and straight blade of this knife is quite specific among whittling and wood carving tools. It is designed to remove thin layes of wood, and the cutting edge is very long and easy to sharpen.

This whittling knife reaches unaccessible areas, making it easy to complete even the most challenging whittling projects.

BeaverCraft – C4 – Whittling Knife

C4 – Whittling Knife


  • Total length – 200 mm (7.87 inches)
  • Blade length – 80 mm (3.14 inches)
  • Blade width – 17 mm (0.66 inches)
  • Handle length – 120 mm (4.72 inches)
SKU: C4 Categories: ,
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This knife has a long blade with thin and rounded point, and it is designed for roughing and whittling. You can use it for any wood type projects, and remove big chunks of wood with its sharp tip.

It is very useful for spoon and bowl carving projects, and other wood carving designs where you need to remove heavy stock quickly.


BeaverCraft – C8 – Small Cutting Knife

C8 – Small Cutting Knife


  • Total length – 165 mm (6.49 inches)
  • Length of the cutting edge – 35 mm (1.37 inches)
  • Handle length – 125 mm (4.92 inches)
  • Handle material – Ashwood
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Here we have a smaller knife for detail and delicate carving, and it is suitable for beginners who wish to try animal and caricature carving, or even relief carving projects. Holding it is super comfortable, which is important as carving sculptures can take a long time of dedicated work.

The blade is sharp and precise, for cutting out small bits of wood and creating beautiful shapes on your wooden surfaces.



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