Furniture Making Course: Make a Serving Platter

Skill Level: Beginner  (Is this course right for me?)


Project-based Courses

marking up serving platter

Project-based courses are aimed at those who want to immerse themselves in the art of handmade furniture. There are a range of projects to suit varying skills levels. These courses work either on a stand-alone basis or as a progressive series, building up your experience step by step.

About this Course

In this, the first of the project series, you will make a large table serving platter. This is an ideal starting point if you have little or no wood working experience.

The skills and knowledge you will acquire as you make this beautifully designed centrepiece are the foundations of the woodworker’s journey in pursuit of excellence in making. The processes that go into making your platter are those most used in furniture making - they are the ones you will draw on every time you turn your hand to woodworking. It is the ability to perform each process perfectly that will enable you to become a truly outstanding craftsperson.

The course is run in my workshop on the Surrey / Hampshire border, just outside the Georgian town of Farnham. I undertake all the teaching myself and, to ensure individual attention, there are never more than five students.

What you will Learn

planing platter edges

The course covers:

  • Selecting timber
  • Guidance on buying furniture making tools
  • Hand tool selection and maintenance
  • Sharpening and tuning of hand planes
  • Using hand planes
  • Achieving flat, straight and square with a plane
  • Marking tools
  • Hand saws and sawing straight
  • Advanced sharpening of planes and scrapers for ‘difficult’ timber
  • Wood finishing; making your own food-safe wood finish
  • Building confidence in the use of hand tools

Objectives and Follow-Up

At the end of this five-day course you will have gained a strong foundation in furniture making skills. In addition, you will have the experience and confidence to plan and make your own projects and use and maintain hand tools. Finally, you will take home your own hand-crafted serving platter - a beautiful centrepiece for your table, made from locally sourced English hardwood.

Following the course you will receive an email with a range of information to help you take your next steps. For example, advice about buying and maintaining tools and details of suggested suppliers. We will also include plans and a materials list for a project using the skills you have learned during your course. This will help you put your new knowledge into practice.

Skill Level

If you haven’t trained with me before and would like some guidance on whether this course is right for you, please get in touch by emailing me at or calling 07811262360.

Serving Platter - checking accuracy

In Summary

Course duration: 5 days.

Courses run from Monday 9.00am to Friday 5.00pm. All tools and materials are provided.

Course fee: £695 (materials included).

We provide tea and coffee throughout the course but you will need to arrange your own lunch. I recommend that you bring a packed lunch each day. However we are only a few minutes by car from Farnham town centre if you need anything.

If you want accommodation, there are many excellent hotels and B&Bs in the area. Click this link to see a selection.

Please note that we are unable to accept applications from anyone under the age of 18 at the start of their course.

Here is a summary of course dates:

  • 26 February – 2 March 2018
  • 16 – 20 April 2018 (full)
  • 21 – 25 May 2018 (full)
  • 09 – 13 July 2018 (full)
  • 24 – 28 September 2018 (full)
  • 08 – 12 October 2018 (full)
  • Book This Course

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    Get in Touch!

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    Our Work in Images

    bespoke furniture images

    Get In Touch

    Aidan McEvoy Fine Furniture
    Willey Park Farm
    Alton Road

    Farnham, Surrey
    GU10 5ER

    Local Accommodation

    Here are details of local accommodation for course participants. Please note, for preferential rates, course participants are required to book directly with the accommodation-providers via telephone or email, mentioning the Aidan McEvoy Furniture Courses.

    Farnham House Hotel ***
    A charming country house hotel with 24 en-suite rooms, restaurant and bar, peacefully set and only a 2-minute walk from the workshop.
    Alton Road (A31)
    Farnham, Surrey
    GU10 5ER
    Tel: +44 (0) 1252 716908

    Mercure Farnham Bush Hotel ***
    Beautiful 17th-century period building. Restaurant, bar, lounge and parking. Central Farnham, with 5-minute walk to train station and 10-minute drive from the Workshop.
    The Borough
    Farnham, Surrey
    GU9 7NN
    Tel: +44 (0) 1252 715237

    Frampton Cottage B&B, Crondall
    Lovely secluded room in charming cottage, including terrace. Beautiful views, in quiet village. With two friendly chocolate labs. 10-minute drive from Workshop.
    Frampton Cottage
    Crondall, Surrey
    GU10 5QU
    Tel: +44 (0)1252 850792

    The Plume of Feathers, Crondall
    A 16-century Inn with 3 en-suite rooms, situated in a bustling pub with restaurant. 10-minute drive from Workshop.
    The Borough
    Crondall, Surrey
    GU10 5NT
    Tel: +44 (0) 1252 850245

    If you would like any further information on local accommodation, please feel free to contact us.

    Is this course right for me?

    Beginner Courses

    Beginner courses are aimed at the complete novice. No previous woodworking experience is required. Beginner courses are also suitable for those who have done some woodworking in the past and that want to refresh their knowledge and skills.

    Still not sure which course is right for you?

    If you haven’t trained with me before and would like some guidance on which course is right for you please get in touch by emailing me at or calling 07811 262360.