Bethany College announces the launch of the Swedish Crafts Program. Providing students with an opportunity to learn how to make hand-crafted objects that celebrate the Lindsborg community’s rich history in the arts and Swedish culture, the Swedish Crafts Program will begin with the production of Bethany bowls and Bethany brooms. As a part of this unique program, students will learn the value of hand skills, the potential of collaboration, and the necessity of servant leadership. The program will prepare students to contribute to the local community and to the broader world.
“Bethany College is committed to offering distinctive experiences that result in student success and community transformation, such as the Swedes to Sweden initiative, and now, the Swedish Crafts Program,” said President Will Jones. “It is our belief that this effort will provide a rich learning experience for our students and increase the number of visitors to Lindsborg.”
These Swedish inspired crafts celebrate diversity within Bethany’s learning community. Students will learn creative problem solving and diverse intellectual experiences within the craft program. The Swedish Crafts Program offers multicultural educational experiences to the public, enriching the arts experience for students, faculty, staff, alumni, friends, and the Lindsborg community.
“Other than our Swedish roots, what causes the Crafts program to be unique is the creative license we give our makers,” says Eleanor Heimbaugh, Assistant Professor of Ceramics and Sculpture and Director of Swedish Crafts. “We live in a world moving further and further away from real and personal experiences. When you use one of our objects, it is a real experience and you are making a connection with the person that created it. Especially with clay work, you are holding the maker’s hand in a way.”
Students in the program will create products, learn how to market the items, and sell the merchandise being produced. The program is a way for students, wanting to be entrepreneurs within the creative arts, to learn how to run a successful business and gain a value and understanding for handmade goods.
Swedish Crafts plans to expand to serve the surrounding communities with art workshops and provide educational classes on Swedish Crafts for the Smoky Valley school system.
Currently, the crafts available for purchase are Bethany bowls and Bethany brooms with the addition of Swedish spoons in the near future. Each piece will have imprints of the individual artist as each is hand created. There are three bowl sizes and nine different styles of brooms being handcrafted.
To learn more about the program or to purchase a bowl or a broom, please visit www.bethanylb.edu/shop-swedish-crafts/.