The social fabric: Exploring the social value of craftsmanship for service design

Michelle Baggerman, Kristi Kuusk, Daniëlle Arets, Bas Raijmakers, Oscar Tomico


This paper addresses the social component of craftsmanship in relation to service design. The transferal of crafting skills and knowledge can be considered a service that is co-created between master and apprentice. The social aspects of learning craftsmanship will be discussed in the light of how they could benefit designers in the development of Product Service Systems. Workshops in bobbin-lace making that took place as part of a research project about smart-textile Product Service Systems serve as the foundation of this analysis. A group of designers assumed the role of apprentices in these workshops. The aim was not only to apprehend the basics of this historical craft, but also to get an understanding of the concept of craftsmanship. In this paper we discuss our observations and reflections on being designers as apprentices and how the insights gained can apply to service design.

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