In the “old days,” as my children so fondly refer to the time when I was younger than them, I had the privilege and good fortune of being in one of the first woodworking classes in my high school that allowed girls. The other woman and I were accepted by our male counterparts more easily than the teacher. However, we soon realized that our attention to detail, the ability to read patterns, and compile bills of materials overshadowed other areas. My final project, an oak coffee table of my own design received an A + and is still in use.

I look back on that class as a stepping stone that encouraged me to pursue other areas of creativity. Every now and then, I keep drawing a project design, spend a day or so at the local hardware store with my list, dust off the sawhorses, and create!

Finding quick and easy project patterns for the most difficult and time-consuming ones can be a challenge in itself. With some excitement and fear I opened the pages of not one, but two books that had been written by Stevie Henderson and Mark Baldwin.

For starters, you don’t conjure up images of fancy furniture and accessories when you see a header containing 2 X 4. Intrigued and fascinated by the idea that a wall stud could become something useful and extremely enjoyable, I did a preliminary reading. By the time I took a look at both books, I was convinced that they had to come home to me!

2 x 4 outdoor projects and great 2 x 4 accessories for your home offer straightforward and simple instructions combined with diagrams, bills of materials, and tools and patterns to complete the projects offered. You will be impressed with how easily you can make a wall shelf to display your collectibles or an ottoman to support your feet. You can add hurricane lamps, a barbecue table, or a porch swing to your outdoor living space.

There are enough accessory projects here to allow enthusiastic carpenters to put finished projects throughout the home. Henderson begins his books with a chapter on basic tools, techniques, materials, and safety. The projects shown are in color and have the step-by-step instructions, clear illustrations, and great line drawings that even the newest carpenter could want.

Both the novice and seasoned carpenter will enjoy having one or both books in their library.