How to Make Homemade Wood Filler

Wood filler fills cracks, gaps, and imperfections in wooden surfaces like furniture and crafts. It’s a must have tool for DIYers who want professional-grade finishes. 

There are many commercial wood fillers available, but making your own is also a viable option. Our DIY wood filler recipe is easy, low-cost, and allows you to match the wood you’re working with.

Best DIY Wood Filler Recipe

How To Make DIY Wood Filler


  • Putty knife
  • Fine grit sandpaper
  • Sander, rasp, or file


  • Wood dust or sawdust
  • Wood glue
  • Mixing container

DIY Wood Filler: Step-by-Step Instructions

Step 1: Collect the Sawdust

Collect a sufficient amount of sawdust from the same type of wood you’re repairing. If you don’t have enough, create more by sanding a piece of the same wood until you’ve collected an ample amount.

Step 2: Mix the Filler

Place the sawdust into your mixing container and gradually add the wood glue while stirring. Start with a 1:1 ratio of sawdust to wood glue and adjust as needed.

Continue adding the binding agent and stirring until you achieve a putty-like consistency. The filler should be pliable and easy to work with.

Step 3: Test the Consistency

To ensure you have the right consistency, apply a small amount of the filler to a hidden or inconspicuous area of the wood. Assess whether it matches the wood’s color and texture.

Step 4: Apply the Wood Filler

Using the putty knife, apply the DIY wood filler to the area you want to repair. Ensure it’s pressed firmly into any gaps or voids.

Step 5: Leave It To Dry and Cure

The drying time will depend on the binding agent used. Wood glue mixtures dry within a few hours, while epoxy resin may take longer.

Step 6: Sand and Finish

Once the filler has dried and cured, sand the repaired area until it is smooth and level with the surrounding wood. You can then finish the wood with stain, paint, or a clear finish to match the wood’s appearance.

Creative Uses for DIY Wood Filler

Add Artistic Texture

Use DIY wood filler to add texture and dimension to your paintings and sculptures. You can create raised patterns or 3D effects on canvases and wooden sculptures.

Decorative Inlays

Craft intricate inlays using different wood species and DIY wood filler. Create geometric patterns, floral designs, or other decorative elements on tabletops, doors, or wooden boxes.

Faux Wood Grain Effects

Experiment with DIY wood filler to imitate the appearance of wood grain on non-wood surfaces, such as MDF (medium-density fiberboard), cardboard, or foam. This technique is useful for props, stage design, and faux wood finishes.

Customized Wooden Utensils

Personalize wooden utensils like cutting boards by filling engraved names or patterns with DIY wood filler. 

Natural-Looking Knots and Imperfections

Enhance the natural beauty of wood by creating knots, whorls, and imperfections for a rustic appearance.

Wood Mosaics

Create stunning wooden mosaics by arranging small, differently colored pieces of wood and securing them with DIY wood filler.

Wooden Jewelry

Design and create wooden jewelry pieces, like pendants or earrings, by embedding small wood filler accents.