• Cycle Chic Debate
  • kristi woo
Cycle Chic Debate

There are many conversations that revolve around cycling these days with a lot of different facts and opinions that join and divide. In the end, we at riyoko really hope all of these conversations bring us together. Is this the Olympic fever speaking through riyoko? Not really, we just wanna get along:).

So, speaking of differences and balances, I came across two articles today over the debate of Cycle Chic:

One, " A Critique of Cycle Chic", by the formidable cycling advocate, Elly Blue, and the other in cartoon form, "So, Ladies..."by the clever and talented Bekka Wright, a.k.a Bikey Face.

Elly and Bekka both feel that cycling in ordinary clothing is important, but they don't subscribe to Mikael Coville Andersen's, founder of Cycle Chic's, vision and manifesto. 

And regarding Cycle Chic or not, this is riyoko's response by me (Kristi), as written in the comments to Elly's article, to all of the above:

"hmmm... I guess I would say that there is a balance. Wear what is comfortable for you and what is functional for you on a bicycle. Wear what makes you safe as well. If that includes lycra or a tweed blazer, heels or sneakers then wear it - wear what suits YOU.

As a designer, I think some things look better than others in clothing, but I also think some music, food and art is better than others. It can come down to technical details, like lines, contours, shapes and colours, but in the above convo, it's clearly not about that. On the surface, it's more about taste ( and it's clear lots of us have different views on that), but deeper down it's seems to me that it's about how we choose to express our freedom in cycling through our garb. Our costumes are our armour - helmets, heels or not.

Overall, though, the thing we all share, is the love of cycling, the independence that it provides us, and, possibly, the symbology it holds for a better, more interactive, cleaner living future.

I know that I'm a maker of cycling and travel specific clothing so it may be seem, to some, contradictory to say most of the above, but really it's not because what I design is meant to fit into existing wardrobes to make the cycling and travelling garb more functional and/ or stylish, whatever that means to YOU. That is the bottom line, every person has a different idea of style, so go with it, whether it's the flannel grunge t-shirt, the hipster version of it, or a highly reflective vest. Wear it as long as reflects ( no pun intended) YOU.

...and  I do see where Ms. Wright, and  Ms. Blue are coming from - that the stereotype of women is being propagated through a mandated visual representation in fashion. It's a hard subject to control though. What I can hope, and see happening all the time, is that once other sisters get on the bike, that they make informed decisions as to what they choose to wear, equally, if not more importantly based on functionality and safety than on style. If the two mesh, then that is even better from my designer opinion and eye;). We all have something to appreciate in our individual styles -- without them, there would be no such thing to call style."

To the collective journey on two wheels ~ <3

  • kristi woo

Comments on this post ( 0 )

Leave a comment