About The Unplugged Woodshop

Canada's First Hand Tool Only Woodworking School

Located in Toronto, Ontario, the fourth largest city in North-America, you’ll have much to see and experience while you’re here.

The UW-Toronto is also proud to host our very own “Hand-Tool Emporium” where you’ll find some of the finest hand tools available anywhere on the planet. With makers and manufacturers from Canada and the United States, England, France, New Zealand and Australia, you’ll be able to put these tools to test during your classes and courses.

The school is well equipped with traditional style workbenches and dedicated saw benches. Each bench is equipped with a full set of tools and task lighting. Students are able to complete any task from sharpening to french polishing and parquetry at their bench with no need for additional resources. This makes our schools a truly hand-tool, work-friendly, environment. We offer a range of classes from a 2-hour Introduction To Hand Tools, all-day Bootcamp Classes, Green Woodworking Classes, and many more.

For the more ambitious our Artisan program is a full-time Monday to Friday. During the
10 weeks, you’ll discover the tools, materials, methods and techniques we use here at The Unplugged Woodshop. The fundamental skills involved in furniture making, using only hand tools, will be yours to discover, practice and develop. 
Through a deliberate and methodical approach to working wood with your hands, you’ll gain valuable insight into the process and techniques used in the fine art of cabinetmaking

The Unplugged Woodshop is dedicated to providing students with a safe and inspired, educational experience through the proper use of hand tools and the fine art of working wood.

Founder/Owner & Lead Instructor, Tom Fidgen
“Fidgen & Roubo — creative geniuses separated by 250 years.”   Don Williams


Tom Fidgen is an author, musician, designer, and maker. He is the founder and lead instructor at The Unplugged Woodshop Toronto.

Originally from Cape Breton Island, in Nova Scotia, Canada, Tom has a background in Set Design and Wooden Boat Building. Tom has written for Fine-Woodworking Magazine, Popular Woodworking Magazine, Canadian Woodworking Magazine, Furniture & Cabinetmaking Magazine, British Woodworking Magazine, as well as the Lee Valley Tools Newsletter.

Why is Tom Fidgen one of the best-selling woodworking authors on the planet? Because he makes you want to prop his book up in the workshop and start building. Paul Mayon

The New English Workshop

His first book, Made by Hand – Furniture Projects from the Unplugged Woodshop (2009-F&W Media) was the top-selling woodworking book of 2010 and is regarded as: “The definitive book of how to build woodworking projects using hand tools.”

His much-anticipated follow-up, The Unplugged Woodshop – Hand Crafted Projects for the Home and Workshop, was released with The Taunton Press in September 2013, and has received critical acclaim since its debut.

Tom has a passion for teaching hand tool-only woodworking, and when he’s not at the Unplugged Woodshop Toronto, he can be found teaching at International woodworking schools around the planet.

If you’d like to book Tom at a school or special event near you, get in touch with us here.

His projects are brilliant in that they actually fulfill a need. Nick Gibbs

Editor, British Woodworking Magazine

Fidgen convincingly demonstrates that if life is a story, going unplugged is one good way of “writing our own chapters.” Derek Jones

Editor, Furniture & Cabinetmaking Magazine

We’d like to publicly thank our supporters, Dr. Kate Arnold and Patrick McKenna for their financial support; as well as James Stenhouse and Lee Valley Tools for their generous tool donations.

Without them, the Unplugged Woodshop-Toronto, would simply not exist.