Tuesday, 27 November 2007

The search for a stylish helmet...

‘Hats should be worn with confidence and nonchalance’
Stephen Jones, Milliner.

Apparently the same does not apply to cycling helmets, that it seems should be worn with reluctance, embarrassment and shame. The only reason I sport one of these monstrous inventions, is that when cycling on busy roads, despite feeling like a fool, I feel safer with it on.
…And so begins my search for a stylish helmet. I have identified 2 helmets currently on the market that are at least making an effort but both are BMX/Skate styles and not particularly ladylike, The Bell Faction and the The Giro Makai

I was very excited at seeing a rather fabulous, ladies helmet at the PrĂȘt a Rouler cycling fashion show in East London earlier this year (pictured above) and am currently on a mission to find out if, when and where this will be on sale…watch this space!

Friday, 23 November 2007

Tip 3: Legwarmers are the new bicycle clips

Legwarmers are a modern day alternative to the bicycle clip. If you are wearing wide legged trousers or boot cut jeans just pop legwarmers on over them and you will avoid any unpleasant chain scuffing. (Long socks work just as well)

An extra safety tip is to wear bright 80’s style colours. Your ankles are moving as you cycle so they can catch a drivers eyes, alerting them to your presence, more successfully than bright colours on your upper body.

Both Topshop and American Apparel do great legwarmers in a wide range of colours from bright pink to more subtle autumnal shades. For a slightly more stylish warmer of the leg go to hosiery boutique Tabio

Tip 2: Indulge in some cycle flirting

As a cyclist in London you are part of a sub culture, giving you an automatic connection with other cyclists. This makes flirting easy. Quick nods, winks, and smiles to fellow passing cyclists are perfectly acceptable and should be actively encouraged. (Prolonged gazing whilst waiting at the traffic lights, not advised!)

It can also be a great conversation starter if you've spotted a boy on a bike that you like!

Wednesday, 21 November 2007

Tip 1: Like your bike!

It doesn't have to be bright pink but it's important that you like your bike. If you like riding it and like the way you look on it you'll ride it more often. So although you may be tempted to resurrect that mountain bike you got for your 12th birthday that's rusting away in the garage at your parents house, I wouldn’t advise it. Sell it on ebay and put the money towards a bike that you really like.

There are some great ladies bikes about and they don't have to break the bank.

My current favourites for style and value are CRUISERS. They are big in the States but have not had the recognition they deserve with us Brits..check out this green Schwinn Cruiser for only £159...bargain!

I also love Dutch Bikes, Pashleys, Bromptons, they all look great and come in all sorts of lovely colours...more details coming soon!

Saturday, 17 November 2007

Way to go!

This is my first blog on the quest to make cycling cool. Natasha Khan and Lily Allen do a fine job of it but they are of course in pop videos not hooning around Shepherds Bush roundabout in rush hour. Coming up soon there will be tips and advice on how to be safe and stylish (at the same time!) when you are out on the streets...