Amongst the ephemera from my latest purse clearout I found a tram ticket and a coffee shop loyalty card. The smooth perfection of their surfaces, the neatly arranged colours and thoughtfully rounded corners made me pause before throwing them out. There’s a certain melancholy about mass produced items, so carefully designed to pass fleetingly through our lives without much consideraton from their audience.
Something about these two tickets lying side by side worked: their equal size and their opposite colours. Notionally they fitted too as the coffee shop sits by the tram stop I use when I go into town. They told a small familiar story.
I had been exploring textiles in preparation for a school based project and weaving was at the front of my mind. I snipped the ticket lengthways and the card widthways to create a warp and weft. Paper is much less forgiving than yarn which means that significant tension built up as I layered the tiny strips of paper over and under eachother. (An echo of the tension I feel when I throw stuff away?) In order to stop the whole thing pinging apart I stitched the layers together at the ends of each row.
In attaching the little paper weaving to the canvas I continued the lines from the printed design in backstitch which suggests the tram tracks, the often thoughtless journeys. I added a curve which nods to passenger handgrips and handles on coffee cups as well as the recycled nature of this piece.