Monday 24 February 2014

Competition Time!

a Rafflecopter giveaway Fancy winning a Bobbin Cape and a copy of The Girl's Bicycle Handbook? Well, to be in with a chance to win all you need to do is enter the online raffle above. The winner will be picked at random and announced on 24th March. The Bobbin Cape is the ideal addition to any stylish cyclists spring wardrobe and it could be yours for FREE!

Friday 14 February 2014

Cyclists casting call...

Calling all cyclists who like the limelight... Sky are looking for cyclists to star in their new campaign. take a look at the casting details below and if you fir the bill get in contact with

"At Sky it’s our mission to get people back out on their bikes!
We are producing a new campaign to raise awareness of our SKY RIDE ( cycling website. We want cyclists across the country to discover the host of cycling related activities and info it contains.
Our campaign is based on the emotion of cycling. Everyone who’s ever ridden a bike will know how riding a bike feels, this feeling is common to all. Therefore we’d love to feature the real cyclists of Britain in the TV spot, along with members of the Sky Team. We want to illustrate and celebrate the host of cycling Britons that there now are.

Specifically we are after the following categories of British cyclist:
-Female: 18-35 non-competitive (ie non lycra wearing!) Loves her bike, loves riding her bike! Uses her bike to go shopping, see friends.
-Boy: aged 6-9 and his family. 
-Competitive males and females: Aged over 30. Committed weekend cyclists.
-Mountain bikers: (we’re not talking Red Bull Rampage! Just folks who like going off the road even if that means strictly “on path”).
-Non Competitive males over 35. If you use your bike to get places- that’s what we’re after.

We’re happy to shoot groups or individuals.
If you’re interested in taking part or know of someone that’s fits the bill please don’t hesitate to contact us:

Tuesday 11 February 2014

My book!

Without wanting to blow my own trumpet, this post is to officially announce that my book, The Girls Bicycle Handbook - Everything you need to know about life on two wheels,  is out on 3rd April 2014!

My aim was to make the book as USEFUL and as PRETTY as possible, to give the reader (discerning, stylish women) the best of both worlds when it comes to practical information and style inspiration.

The book both celebrates the benefits of cycling and tackles the barriers that put many women off cycling. I talked to lots of women while researching my book and found it hugely interesting to find out about peoples individual benefits and barriers. So in the run up to the release we are casting the net out even wider and want to find out what YOUR benefits and barriers are? Take a look at The benefits and barriers survey here to get involved.

The Survey is very short and will only take you a minute or two. We want anyone and everyone to get involved, you can be an experienced cyclist who can't go a day without your bike or you might not have been on a bike since you were 12 but are thinking you'd like to give it a go. Whatever your circumstances we would LOVE to get your feedback.

‘I finally concluded that all failure
was from a wobbling will rather
than a wobbling wheel.’
Frances E. Willard, Wheel Within a Wheel:
How I learned to Ride the Bicycle, 1895

More snippets and advice from the book coming soon, watch this space or follow us on Facebook , Twitter and Pin interest.

If you are a blogger, writer or someone who likes to spread the word when it comes to all tings bikes, books or fashion and would like to review the book, pls get in contact to request a press copy.

Friday 7 February 2014

Velove is in the air

In case you’ve been cycling around with your eyes closed, Valentine’s Day is a week today.
Cycle away from the clich├ęs and go on a romantic ride. It’s cheap and you can even boycott all the hearts and go with friends. If you really want to go for it, most bike hire companies provide tandem hire and it’s a well known fact that on an adorable scale of one to kittens, a tandem is a nine. A couple of places you can hire from in London are,

Here are some things to remember when riding in tandem:

  • The person on the front is called the pilot, the stoker is on the back and under no circumstances should either of you start singing “Daisy Daisy” it will never leave your head. EVER. 

  • Work on your stage whisper. You aren’t in a car, people can hear what you say to each other.
  • When people say ‘they aren’t peddling’ about your stoker, always smile and laugh in a patronising way so they realise they are not the first.
  • If you see another tandem hold hands with them and ask if they have any good come backs to the ‘they aren’t peddling’ heckle.

  • Don’t get punctures. A whole ‘it’s your fault’ back and forth will begin.
  • Gear changes can come as a surprise to the stoker. As pilot you must either warn your stoker in advance or revel in the power.
  • The pilot should remember that they are what the stoker will be staring at A LOT. Keep your hair tidy, your helmet shiny (it can act as a mirror) and try to make your back as interesting as possible. One idea is to tape a map to your back so the stoker can navigate/ feel important.

  • You are always going to look adorable on a tandem but match outfits to look EVEN MORE fricken adorable.

Whatever you feel about Valentine's, we think it’s a perfect time to show your bike (and maybe your partner if they deserve it) some good loving. A few gifts ideas...

Wear your heart on your sleeve or anywhere you like. Write the card to your bike.

 Ding ding. This will show your bike how much you heart it. 

...but not as much as I love mine.

Reflect on the times you've shared.

BYOB? Bring your Perfect for that romantic meal for two.

Because we all know what is the light of our lives.

Tuesday 4 February 2014

Sod the tubes get on yer bike...

Have you been um-ing and ah-ing about whether or not to start cycling to work? Well, this week's Tube strike could be the perfect chance for you to strike out on the bike. From 9pm on Tuesday (4th Feb) to the morning of 7th Feb, there are MAJOR disruptions on the Tube lines and although there are still some services running I think it's fair to say getting about by Tube is going to be a pain in the ass. Check TFL's websites for details.

But let's try and look on this as a positive... maybe what looks to be a right royal pain in the ass, could be the kick up the ass that you need to get on your bike! So here's a little bit of advice if you are thinking of joining the burgeoning bike community this week but are not quite sure where to begin...

Get your bike sorted
If you have a bike but it's not had much TLC for a while, dust it off and do a quick A, B, C, D check.

A = air (check wheels are pumped); B = bakes (check they still work); C = chain (check it doesn't make any weird noises when the pedals are turning); D = direction (check the handlebars are straight).

If you don't have a bike, or your bike is beyond repair, give the Boris Bikes a go. Although I prefer to use my own bike when I can, I often use a Boris bike when I am in town. They are easy to ride and so blinkin handy. You don't need to sign up for membership, you can simply put your credit card in the terminal and get a bike released, and if you use the bike for 30 mins or less you don't get charged at all!

Pace yourself
If you've not been in the saddle for a while I would not advise taking on a 10-mile commute into Central London. A good idea is to cycle part of the way. Devise a route where you can start with a gentle ride of a couple of miles and pick up public transport the rest of the way. As someone who lives in Chiswick and works in Shoreditch (and doesn't always fancy a 11-mile commute, taking on the Old Street Roundabout) I've been doing this for years and swear by it.

Plan your route
Make sure you plan your route, don't just set off and hope for the best. Getting lost on your way to work can be really stressful. Have a look at the cycling directions on Google Maps the night before and use your GPS on your phone while en route. Just be sure to use an Incredible Bike Band so you can keep both hands firmly on the handlebars while you're cycling.

If you want to find a bike buddy, someone who does the same route as you, check out I Bike London's "Bike the Strike" campaign. Mark is hooking up ride leaders with newbie cyclists through twitter. A brilliant idea!

Safety first
If you are nervous about cycling on the roads, maybe think about having a lesson. A lot of London boroughs offer free or subsided training. Fill out this form to see what your borough offers (Ealing, Hackney and Lewisham are three I know do). I have done two of these training sessions, one when I very first started cycling in London, and a more advanced session when I started writing my book. Both were invaluable. A few key things to remember are: keep a metre between you and parked cars to avoids getting hit by car doors; do not go on the inside of a bus or HGV; if you feel unsure about a junction or situation, stop at a safe point in the road, get off your bike and push on the pavement. Don't get yourself in a panic. Also swat up on your highway code, especially if you don't drive.

Want more advice?
I spent a lot of last year writing a book to help women overcome the common barriers that cycling presents. The book is called The Girls Bicycle Handbook and comes out on 3rd April 2014. I delve quite deeply into cycle safety and the logistics of cycling to work, along with maintenance and, of course, what to wear on your bike! The book is available to pre-order and I will be featuring snippets of advice from the book on my blog over the next two months. So keep checking in and follow me on Facebook and Twitter for more updates.