My Story

As Paisley waved off its bid for UK City of Culture 2021, the bid documents themselves were all given a unique twist.

Artists, designers and groups with links to the town were invited to design bespoke front covers for the documents.

Bound with thread donated from Coats, the company to whom Paisley’s fortunes were tied and which is still a global force, each has its own Paisley inspired design.

As they are handed over to the judging panel of the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport who organise the competition, we can reveal the inspiration behind some of the 25 covers.

Read the story of the Paisley Recovery Pattern, a collaborative piece by 11 local recovery groups with artist-in-residence Nadine Kelly below.

Local groups joined forces to come up with a brand new Paisley pattern which represented them all and their different recoveries.

The Sunshine Recovery Café, The Men’s Shed and the Family Support Group formed some of the 200 people joined forces for the unique front cover.


Nadine Kelly said: “The design of the pattern came from what all the different recovery groups kept saying to me. It was important that every section of the pattern is different, because everyone’s recovery is different. Being treated as an individual during recovery is essential, it’s not a one size fits all.

“It also represents the idea that when we’re in recovery we are stronger together and that being part of a group and the community is extremely beneficial.”

The broken parts of the Paisley pattern design instead of the usual more famous floral inspired Indian design, represent the often fractured pasts of the participants.

Nadine added: “But now we are rebuilding our lives and looking forward to the future.”

The colours were inspired by the Sunshine Recovery Café in the town’s logo - and the pattern appears on a variety of objects sold there, helping it generate its own income.

Nadine added: “Their big dream is to become independent and have a café on the High Street.”