An Ode to Public Transportation Seat Covers: How Are They Ugly and Beautiful at the Same Time?

CityLab recently put out a call for people’s favorite public transportation seat covers, and the results couldn’t be more, um, colorful? We all know the feeling of turning the corner entering one of those large tour busses, speculating which pattern will damage your eyesight for the duration of your trip. Or the feeling of visiting a new city and wondering if the public transit system will feature plastic or fabric seats. If glistening plastic seats pull up, you breathe a sigh of relief. If worn out fabric ones do, you sigh knowing you’d rather stand than risk it even though the patterns are pretty fun sometimes. Either way, we all love to hate public transportation seating covers, and for pretty good reason too. 

Yeah, most of these are hideous and dated, but at the same time, how can you really hate these musty, grimy, gum-stained beauties? Sure, light-up disco floors and repurposed Blockbuster signs also bring about a strange sense of nostalgia, but where else can you experience this wave of emotion on a daily basis other than public transportation seating overs? Maybe they’re only beautiful in ironic terms, but that’s still beauty in our eyes.

See some of the fun submissions below and make sure to include your own in the original thread or our comments section. We’d love to hate to love what your city has to offer:

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I’m looking for examples of any unique, characterful fabrics used on public transport for @CityLab. Any ideas?
London is an obvious one.

— Feargus O’Sullivan (@FeargusOSull) January 29, 2019


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Canberra, Australia offers particularly gaudy textures

— Hamish McKinnon (@hamishmckinnon9) January 29, 2019


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A wide shot for context.

— Diper911 (@CatsBlanchard) January 30, 2019


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From Istanbul, Turkey. Metrobüs. ??

— Emre Erbirer (@emreerbirer) January 29, 2019


Source: core77

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