When I first decided to move to London from Melbourne, I was unsure about whether I’d feel comfortable cycling around such a large, sprawling city. I’d never even heard of people cycling in London, everyone just got around on the Tube.
Shipping over my bike was the best decision I made for my time overseas. I gained immense confidence as a commuter cyclist, I got to places quicker without the stress of public transport and I discovered new places which I otherwise would never have encountered. Owning a bike really opened up the city for me and gave me headspace not to become engulfed in the strains of living in a fast-paced city of 13 million people.
We get so many emails asking about stylish helmets that we know there is a market out there for something far removed from a Stackhat.
This cork helmet from French designer Kévin Goupil caught our eye. It’s modeled after old French steel army helmets and and capped with a sustainably harvested cork shell for a bit of military-eco-chic. Plus think of all the things you could pin onto it for decoration!
The helmet is in the conceptual phase only and no doubt the helmet complies with EU standards but not Australian standards so it’s unsuitable for those of us Down Under….but it looks cool nonetheless.
I was at the Ausbike Bike Expo over the weekend, hunting around for great cycling gear for the store, meeting suppliers and with a mission to see whether I could find a Pram Bike.
Yes, that’s right. Since my first post about saving up for a pram bike, I’m actually in the situation where I will be needing a pram bike in the near future! Not only for a baby, but because my own bike has handlebars which are at an in-between angle of a situp bike and a road bike, which means as my tummy gets bigger I will probably need to switch to a more upright bike if I want to keep cycling through my pregnancy.
At Ausbike I was quite excited to discover Taga, a stroller/bike made in the Netherlands. It looks quite similar to the Zigo except that it doesn’t convert into a stand-alone bike. But with both of them I like how the baby seat/carriage sits right under the handlebars. I’ve pretty much ruled out any form of trailer because I’d like to be able to see the child in front of me.
On blog readers’ recommendations I also test rode the Gazelle Cabby and to be honest I felt quite uncomfortable and unsteady with its length given it’s on two wheels. I know that many people really love the Gazelle Cabby but it wasn’t for me - I felt like I was steering a ship compared with the Taga which felt like a neat little wheelbarrow.
I had a go at converting the Taga from a bike to a stroller and it was relatively easy with lots of quick release mechanisms much like a folding bike (which I used to own so I’m familiar with the process). The video shows that it should only take 20 seconds, but I think a bit of practice is needed.
I also liked that Taga is narrow enough to fit through a standard doorway and has a handbrake so you can manoeuvre all the parts (and your baby) without having to chock it from rolling away. With a couple of twists and turns it can fit into a sedan, but obviously not as easily as a standard pram – I don’t think I’ll be trying to manage the Taga, the baby, groceries and baby gear without a hand. But that’s ok, as I intend to cycle as much as possible!
As you’d expect, the Taga doesn’t come cheap. The standard model (with the child seat) is $2295. I’d like to think that it still presents value for money as I will get a lot of use out of it and I can save money by minimising the amount of time I have to rely on a car or public transport to get around. Plus I actually feel safer cycling than I do driving these days!
As for the accessories, they are really cute and functional. The ones that caught my eye were:
the Eco shopping basket so that I can ride the bike when pregnant and not look silly with an empty child seat. The Eco shopping basket converts the bike into a shopping trolley at your destination.
the car seat adaptor so that I can use the Taga with a newborn, as they recommend that the child seat is only used from 8 months when the baby is able to sit upright without support. It does mean that I’m restricted to buying a car seat and settings by Maxi-Cosi (apparently available in Australia from October) as the adaptor only fits Maxi-Cosi models CabrioFix with EasyBase and EasyFix attachments.
…and the second child seat maybe in the future ($333). The main seat can take weight up to 25kgs or approx 6 years and the 2nd seat can take weight up to 15kgs or approx 4 years.
Here’s the Taga official promotional video – it’s pretty slick!
Skincare company Lush has produced a Cyclist’s Repair Kit – but it won’t help you with your punctures and you won’t find a screwdriver or allen key in sight.
Instead, Lush are helping more sartorially-minded cyclists to repair themselves after a ride. This cute limited edition kit only costs 9.95 and it includes a mini-Wiccy massage soap bar, a chunk of Aromaco deodorant and sample tins of Handy Gurugu hand cream, lubricating Ultrabalm, King of the Mods hair gel and Ultralight moisturiser (SPF10). Everything is contained in a box made from Lush’s recycled black pot.
Sadly, the kits are only available at Lush UK and not Lush Australia. Great gift idea for your cycling friends and family living in the UK.
Trent was displaying his Cycle Signs, reflective discs made from old reflective road signs salvaged from scrap metal yards which could be attached to spokes or the front shaft for extra visibility. He uses a water jet cutting method to fashion circles from the old road signs and the strap is made from old rubber bike tubes, making Cycle Signs a truly upcycled product.
We bought a couple for ourselves and liked them so much that we thought they would be great in our shop – so now CycleStyle is one of only a handful of retailers in Sydney and Melbourne where you can get your hands on a Cycle Sign spoke clamp or Cycle Sign strap.
Each one is unique and come in a variety of colours – and we’ll ship to anywhere in Australia for free!