A woodcarver carves beautiful images and designs into selected pieces of furniture. The types of products a woodcarver will design and carve include lyre-backed chairs, ball-and-claw feet for tables and chairs, ribbon-festooned aprons of tables, drawer fronts of chests, tea coasters and the like.
Although much of the work previously done by hand is now done by machine, some tasks still require the skill and ingenuity of the woodcarver.
The woodcarver marks with chalk those pieces of wood which must be cut away. The woodcarver places the article on a workbench or clamps it firmly in a bench vice and slowly cuts and chisels away the wood. Care needs to be taken not to cut away too much wood. The article is then finished by sand papering it carefully and staining or varnishing it.
Woodcarvers can specialise in using a particular type of wood for their work. They can also specialise in imitation antique furniture or the restoration of antique furniture.
Schooling & School Subjects
Grade 8 Certificate
Grade 9 Certificate to do furniture manufacture at a TVET college.
Register with an employer providing suitable training. All costs of successful training are borne by the employer. Wage increases during the stages of learnership are dependent on progress through the system as well as entry level skills. Entry levels are more practical than academic.
The Furniture Industry Training Board (FITB) enables the industry to provide comprehensive training to all its employees:
Theoretical and practical training: provided by professional trainers at one of the centres of the FITB. Progress depends on the ability to “do” rather than to “know”.
Duration of course: 2 to 4 years depending on the progress of the candidate in the modular system
Final examination: a compulsory trade test at the Centre of Trade Testing at Olifantsfontein, as well as at accredited training centres
Advanced Training: The Furniture Production Unit of the FITB in Johannesburg offers the following courses: