Palmetto Woodturners is excited to present Melissa Engler and Graeme Priddle for March 2024!

Melissa and Graeme have been collaborating on sculptural wood art in their Grovewood Village studio since 2015. This husband-and-wife team maintains a busy exhibition schedule, while also teaching woodturning workshops around the globe.

Melissa holds a B.A. in sculpture from the University of North Carolina at Asheville. She is also a graduate of Haywood Community College’s Professional Crafts Program, where she studied furniture making. Her work has been featured in Carolina Home + Garden, WNC Magazine, Woodwork Magazine, and American Craft. Engler’s interest in conservation and her love of the outdoors inspires her work in wood. She hopes that her sculptures “convey a sense of our primal connection to our environment and evoke an awareness of its tenuous state.”

Graeme Priddle has been a woodworker for over 25 years and is widely known for turned and carved sculptural work. Many of his sculptures reflect the life and environment of his home country, New Zealand. His work has received numerous awards and has been exhibited worldwide. Priddle is very active in the woodturning world. He served on the committee of the New Zealand National Association of Woodturners for five years and was instrumental in establishing CollaboratioNZ, a biennial week-long art event based in Whangārei Heads, New Zealand.

Hands-on Class

March 1, 2024, from 8:00am to 5:00pm. 
Mann Tool & Supply, 802 Chris Drive, West Columbia, SC 29169
Cost: $110

Class Description – (10 students max)
Graeme & Melissa will lead you through the fundamentals of design, influence and a wide range of surface embellishment techniques.

You will be able to determine your own projects, with guidance from Graeme & Melissa on possibilities to suit individual ideas, skill levels, tool kits and ideas.

Bring pre-turned pieces and/or test boards to play on, and finish if time permits. 

This class will cover design and influences to any depth you desire, how to come up with ideas to decorate and personalize your turnings, wood selection, preparation and drying, rotary carving, woodburning and tip making, application of acrylic and milk paints, paste waxes and finishing techniques. 

We will also cover tool selection, sharpening and safety. 

Suggested ‘to bring’ list

  • Pre-turned pieces - small bowls/spheres/eggs/small vessels. And test boards to start with so if you don’t get it right the first time you will not lose a piece you have invested a lot of time in, we suggest 3” x 3” x ½-1” thick, these can be finished and mounted in frames singly or in multiples, as in the attached picture, or just kept for visual memories. 
    We recommend medium density tight grain woods like maple/cherry/holly. Strong or open grained woods like oak/ash/pine are not suitable.
  • Woodburner – Colewood Detailer, Burnmaster or similar.
  • Carving tools – Mastercarver Micro-Pro (or similar), Foredom, Dremel, hand tools or whatever carving gear you have.
  • Power sanding equipment and/or selection of sandpaper for finishing.
  • Long nosed pliers and small flat screwdriver for making burner tips (We recommend the Leatherman Wave, you won’t regret buying one!)
  • Finishing oil, no toxic sprays or finishes please.
  • Masking tape.
    Selection of good quality artist’s acrylic paint (Golden), milk paint (Old Fashioned Milk Paint), Gilders Paste Wax/ Kiwi Boot Polish. Note: if you do not wish to spend a lot of money buying all this paint/wax yourself, we will have a supply of paints and waxes for you to use during class, there will be a $5 fee to students doing this to cover our cost of replacing what is used.
  • Selection of brushes and used, or new, toothbrushes. We will have some brushes for class use.
  • Pencil, eraser, steel ruler, paper.
  • Pigma Micron archival ink pens. Black - 02/03/05. Available at Michaels and other stationary/art supply stores.
  • We will have the Colwood detailers, high power woodburners, nichrome wire, burning tips and carving burs we use available for individual purchase. As well as a few Micro-Pro carvers, Detailers and high power burners for those that do not have their own to use on class.
  • NOTE: if you do not have all the above do not worry, we will have plenty of tools and materials for students to play with.


March 2, 2024 (8:30am to 1:00pm - demonstration starts at 9:00am)
Mann Tool & Supply, 802 Chris Drive, West Columbia, SC 29169
Cost:  $15 (You must have paid your yearly dues)

Demonstrator's Website and Email