Woodcarving Classes

Home to the Brasstown Carvers, the Folk School has a long history with the fine craft of woodcarving. Students of all skill levels have been coming to Brasstown for generations to learn relief, chip, in-the-round, and other carving techniques.

Explore The Studio

Woodcarving Studio

This cozy, rustic, wood building is in Studio Row near the old sawmill. With its red tin roof and covered porch, the outside feels historic, an ideal place to continue time-honored traditions. Inside, carvers follow their bliss as they carve everything from lifelike birds to walking sticks. Newly renovated, the studio’s workstations are at the perfect height to comfortably tackle intricate, detailed work. Leather and pyrography classes are also taught in this studio.

News & Stories: What's Happening in Woodcarving


Online Classes Return This Winter

The Folk School is excited...


Wood Engraving: Carve Lightly

Enjoy a student perspective from...


Welcome to Our New Website

Our new website is here!...


Folk School Holiday Memories with Carolyn Anderson

Carolyn Anderson is a long-standing member of the renowned Brasstown Carvers and a member of The Southern Highlands Craft Guild. Always quick with encouragement to new carvers, she possesses a sweet and generous nature and is a genuine embodiment of the Folk School’s values of Joy, Kindness, and Stewardship.


Appalachian Traditions with Brasstown Carver Helen Gibson

Join us in welcoming Helen Gibson for this month’s Appalachian Traditions, virtual discussions with instructors from our master-artist-led series on traditional Appalachian craft.


Dexter Dockery’s Graceful Birds Are Now Gracing The Craft Shop

We love to see smiling, Dexter Dockery, who began carving at age 18 and is a lifetime member of the Southern Highland Handcraft Guild, come into the Craft Shop with his graceful, hand-carved birds.


Easter Basket Keepsakes

Some Bunnies Need A Home


A Visit to Hill House, Original Home of Murray Martin

I had never been to Murray Martin’s house (Hill House) before today. I met Murray many years ago when she used to attend Resident Artist, Billie Shelburn’s painting classes. Murray Martin came to Brasstown in 1935 and was a craft teacher at the Folk School during the time of Folk School founders, Olive Campbell and Marguerite Bidstrup. She certainly gave a lot to the school and the community. To help local folks make a better living, the Brasstown Carvers were mentored by Murray and rose to a place of national recognition for their carvings. She retired in 1973 and lived in Hill House from the 1970’s until her death in 2005.



Murray Martin Carving, or “whittling”…

Helen Gibson headshot

Resident Artist in Woodcarving

Helen Gibson

Helen is a Brasstown Carver in the famed local tradition. She studied with Jack Hall and is one of the few instructors who still carves and teaches the Brasstown Nativity figures she illustrates in her books, Carving the Nativity and The Animals of the Nativity. These, along with her books on carving Moses and St. Francis of Assisi, depict her highly detailed style of carving in the round. Helen teaches workshops throughout the Southeast.

Gabe Strand headshot

Woodcarving, Woodturning, and Woodworking Coordinator

Gabe Strand

Gabe is a furniture and cabinetmaker focused on green woodworking and chairmaking. He spent the last two decades living in Seattle, WA where he worked in cabinet shops, built custom homes, and was a whitewater rafting guide. He has been involved in old-time music and dance for many years as a square dance caller and musician. Now living in Brasstown, Gabe is immersing himself in the craft of Appalachian greenwood chairmaking as well as Appalachian music and dance. Look for Gabe leading impromptu lunchtime jams on the Folk School campus.

Images from the Studio

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