Who Should You Call – A Carpenter or a Joiner?Angelique Laaks
Have you ever wondered what the difference is between a carpenter and a joiner? If you were to run a Google search for someone to fit some kitchen cupboards what word would you use? What about finding the best person to build you a bespoke staircase in your new home?
While the words ‘carpenter’ and ‘joiner’ are often used interchangeably – and there are certainly some skills overlap – there is a difference between the two.
Shall we explore these differences together?
What is a Carpenter?
Carpentry tends to be a blanket word for anything to do with wood. However, it forms only a piece of the puzzle.
In what projects would a carpenter be required?
- A carpenter is more involved in the construction and fitting of your wooden elements
- He would be called in to repair wooden components in a house or building such as window frames, fascia boards or soffits
- He would be involved in fitting wooden flooring and staircases
- Shelving, cladding and cabinetry would be done by a carpenter
- A carpenter is more likely to be found on-site in a very hands-on role
Can a carpenter be a joiner? Perhaps. But most often not, as the two trades tend to focus on different skills for different parts of a project.
What is a Joiner?
The clue to this trade is in the name.
A joiner joins; his focus is on designing and creating elements where his specialised skill is required for the joints of a component.
In what projects would a joiner be required?
When you consider that any wooden item is usually made up of various pieces, it stands to reason that the careful alignment and finishing of these pieces where they intersect makes the difference between a great product and a sub-standard one.
Therefore, a joiner would be called upon for projects such as:
- Making window frames
- Designing and making furniture to fit
- Designing and constructing staircases and balustrades
- Making door frames
- Designing and making the joint area for trusses
A joiner is most often to be found in his workshop where he will be designing and carefully crafting the individual elements of a project.
Can a joiner be a carpenter? We think so, simply because the finer skills which are honed as a joiner are still useful and practical to perform the role of a carpenter.
Carpentry vs Joinery – The Nuts and Bolts
For a beautiful piece of furniture such as a desk, a table and chairs, you would call up your local trusted joiner. He will sit with you to determine exactly what you want, will recommend the best wood for the job and the best finish.
He would then design the product, often using CAD for more complex pieces. His focus would be on creating a beautiful piece, perfectly aligned, sturdy and hard-wearing.
This piece may be a new handrail for your staircase, in which case you may well call in a carpenter to carefully fit this piece.
If you are renovating your home and are planning a stunning new kitchen, then you would certainly call in your carpenter who will fit your cupboards, shelving and worktop.
Both your carpenter and joiner have good spacial and mathematical skills, a keen eye for detail and the ability to work accurately from complex drawings or plans.
Your Local Joinery and Carpentry Company
Having just spent a few minutes talking about the differences between these two trades, we’d like to throw a spanner in the works.
Merik Ltd (that’s us!) is a family business which has been operating for over 30 years. We specialise in joinery – our passion for designing and creating spectacular wooden products and components has earned us the respect of our clients, who keep coming back for more.
In addition, our talented team have all the necessary skills to fit or install what we make, from window and door frames to bespoke furniture.
What does this mean for you? Just that you can call on us for, quite literally, any project, and we will see it through from start to finish.
Please feel free to give us a call if you have any questions.