A yarn-bombed seat on the Berkeley-San Francisco BART

Just as BART is considering how to design new seats for its trains — including what covers to use — local yarnbomber Streetcolor has come up with a suggestion.

Streetcolor, whose most recent major Berkeley installation was the looped bike rack outside the downtown Berkeley Public Library, said she wanted to knit “something really big and ambitious” and hence came up with the BART idea.

“I had been reading about how scary the Bart seats had gotten and I could see for myself that the seats covers were drab and depressing. I thought it would be startling to see really bright clean knitting on a seat instead,” she wrote on her Streetcolor blog.

The Bay Citizen recently ran a series of stories on BART seats, highlighting how unhygienic, even potentially unhealthy, the old seating stock is. It kicked off its coverage on March 5 with a piece that revealed lab tests showing seats contained fecal and skin-borne bacteria resistant to antibiotics.


Streetcolor suspected her cover would not last long on BART, so she knitted a slipcover that could slide over the seat and then be removed afterwards . “That way I could yarnbomb several trains with it,” she said.

BART is currently taking potential new seat designs on a “Seat Lab” roadshow for the public to assess its favorites. You can catch it today, June 14th, at Pleasant at Pleasant Hill/Contra Costa Centre Station from 2:30 pm to 6:30 pm. The tour then moves on to Antioch and San Francisco.