With cycle shorts on the catwalk, cycling wear is finally becoming chic. Catherine Bedford of Dashel Helmets checks out some of the best clobber around for the fashion-conscious cyclist …
In the catwalk collections for S/S19 and A/W 19, over 45 major fashion designers featured cycle shorts, including: Chanel, Alexander Wang, Fendi, Miu Miu, Roberto Cavalli, Vivienne Westwood, and Prada. So is fashion now taking inspiration from cycling ?
As a keen city cyclist, I have definitely noticed a trend away from functional but unfashionable cycle wear to clothing and accessories that are both practical and fashionable. Scandinavian lifestyles and designs have long been aspirational in the UK – and they have always cycled to get about in a relaxed, upright style.
It is estimated that around 1.5 million people commute everyday, rising to 2.6 million people who make at least three trips a week. The rise in e-bikes, which are now available to hire by the minute in London via Lime Bike, has put an end to the sweaty commute and looking good when you rock up at the office is all part of the fun.
It’s likely you’ll have made the journey to work quicker, easier and with less stress than those in the car or on the train, with the added bonus that you may have achieved your daily workout too.
When you are commuting in the city, lycra and clip on shoes aren’t necessary – or very appealing. So, if you want to bring some chic to your cycling without losing functionality – what brands should you look out for? Here we check out a few.
Dashing Tweeds (pictured above and top) create modern, urban tweeds woven in the UK for bespoke and ready to wear tailoring. Their cycling range is designed with the knowledge that the time spent cycling to meetings in the city is only a small part of the day, so it is made with a Lumatwill cloth woven with 3M. The 3M reflects car headlights at night, but by day the fibres look like elegant silver threads. Their range includes blazers, bomber jackets, tailored trousers and capes (see top picture).
One of the most important items for cycling safely is, of course, the helmet. Traditionally this has been one of the ugliest items in a cyclist’s wardrobe but that has changed with the creation of the Dashel range of retro-styled cycle helmets.
The only cycle helmet that wouldn’t look out of place with your Prada shorts, it’s made in the UK from carbon-fibre. A Dashel helmet is extremely slim fitting and light, without compromising on safety. It’s tailored to fit, via some special coolmax pads inside which keep you cool and prevent any helmet hair.
Casual Cyclist bag range by Ally Capellino
The Pendle Travel and Cycle body bag is a handy marsupial zip up pouch that can be worn in a number of way: crossbody and close to the chest or around the waist. Named after British cycling hero, Victoria Pendleton, these bags work brilliantly from bike to office. No more clunky rucksacks that need to be dragged around during the day, and no need to carry an extra ‘going for drinks after work’ bag with you too. This bag is practical and will look stylish all day long.
Geek Shoes by Tracey Neuls
The grey sheen of Geek leather cycling shoes is subtle in appearance in daylight, but at night, once illuminated, it reflects the light with an incredible high-vis impact. These look great when cycling and great when you’re not – the perfect peddle to pavement footwear.
Findra Neck Warmer
Any clothes made from natural fabrics allow breathability when cycling and merino wool is prized by cyclists for its warmth. Findra, a Scottish company, only use ethically sourced merino from Australia. Their neck warmers are more practical than a traditional scarf when cycling and have no seams for the ultimate in comfort.
Bookman Metallic Bike Coffee Cup Holder Copper
A leisurely commute would ideally involve coffee, but carrying your coffee on the bike is pretty impractical and unsafe. Not anymore, with this elegant, copper holder that affixes to your bike with a spring mechanism that holds fast over any bumps in the road.
Catherine Bedford is the founder of Dashel Helmets, a range of slim, ventilated, lightweight cycle helmets manufactured in the UK. See: https://www.dashel.cc