What does a cabinetmaker do?
Cabinetmakers create cabinets depending on the needs and specifications of their customers. They work with many different types of wood and other materials and create a variety of different styles. They first meet with their customers to discuss the needs and requirements. They then measure the selected space and create sketches of the project. They discuss the budget and then choose the needed materials. Cabinetmakers also often install cabinets and make sure they are constructed correctly and serve their purpose. The measurements must be accurate and the appearance must be appealing to the customer. Some cabinetmakers also create and repair existing cabinets and wood furniture. Many cabinetmakers specialize in specific areas such as constructing cabinets for hotels and creating wood interiors for aircraft. Many also keep detailed portfolios of their work and feedback from customers to show to potential clients.
What kind of training does a cabinetmaker need?
Cabinetmakers must have at least a high school diploma. Many cabinetmakers complete formal training at community colleges and vocational and technical schools. Most employers prefer candidates that have completed a formal apprenticeship program. Apprenticeship programs combine classroom instruction and on the job training. Apprentices gain the necessary skills and experience in choosing materials, using the required tools, and the required construction methods. Apprenticeship programs typically take 5 to 7 years to complete. Some aspiring cabinetmakers become carpenter assistants while completing their training to gain practical experience. Many cabinetmakers start their careers working in small shops and then move on to large companies or open their own businesses. Many cabinetmakers gain certification to remain competitive in the field.
What are the prospects for a career as a cabinetmaker?
Employment of cabinetmakers is expected to grow about as fast as average for all professions, increasing 9% from 2008 to 2018 (1). The growing population and increase in construction will drive job growth.
Job prospects are expected to be excellent especially for cabinetmakers that are highly skilled and qualified. Cabinetmakers with expertise in creating customized designs will have the best job opportunities.
How much do cabinetmakers make?
As of January 2010, the middle 50% of cabinetmakers earn annual salaries between $25,962 and $39,300. The top 10% earn annual salaries of more than $46,275 (2).
A career as a cabinetmaker is a great choice for people with a strong interest in creating a variety of types of cabinets for many different purposes. Cabinetmakers must have a solid understanding of cabinet construction techniques and the ability to work with a variety of materials. Mechanical aptitude, manual dexterity, detail orientation, and physical stamina are necessary characteristics. Cabinetmakers must have good communication and interpersonal skills and the ability to work independently. They must always follow the proper safety precautions to minimize injury.