A dress made out of BART tickets

What do you do with your BART tickets when they only have a nickel or a dime left on them? Add value? Donate them? Throw them away?

Oakland fashion designer Sean Porter spent three years saving his tiny tickets to create a designer dress, made out of 192 of blue BART tickets, with 120 of those tickets in the skirt alone.

Sean Porter, the designer of a dress made out of BART tickets.

It’s currently on display in the window of Piedmont Fabric in Oakland, alongside a mannequin wearing colorful ribbons representing the BART system map.

“Customers comment on it all day long,” said Lan Nguyen, owner of Piedmont Fabrics. “It gets people to stop, and the kids especially love it.”

Sean Porter and Lan Nguyen standing outside of Piedmont Fabric in Oakland.

Last October, Porter began work on the dress, and he finished the project in December. He stitched the tickets together using transparent nylon thread and a sewing machine. Porter challenged himself to deliver a great-looking dress using an unusual material.

“It wasn’t the easiest material to work with,” Porter said.

A dress made out of BART tickets

The fashion designer used the shape of the Transamerica building as his inspiration for the shape of the dress.

“The lines of the (Transamerica) building, created by the windows and concrete wall, are very bold and symmetrical,” Porter said. “I wanted to evoke those lines by repeating the black and white stripes in the bodice.”

A dress made out of BART tickets.

The fashion designer was born in Alabama and moved to California in 2011 after he visited San Francisco on vacation.

“When I first visited the Bay Area, the way I would get around was on BART,” Porter said. “Being out here surrounded by so many creative people inspired me to be out here.”

Color ribbons arranged to look like the BART system map.

Sean Porter, the designer of a dress made out of BART tickets

A dress made out of BART tickets

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