Mr Newton’s Bike Girls

Mr Newton is a New York City fashion photographer who gets around on a marvelous old blue mixte frame bike. “Yeah, it’s a girls bike – so what?” he writes. “I paid $70 for it at the Hester Street Flea.”

San Francisco bike people may think Mr Newton’s blue bike looks a lot like Meli’s wonderful blue bike or Reese’s mixte frame blue bike (which I can’t find a photo of at the moment!)

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Fashion and bicycles

 

Fashion websites attract a somewhat different demographic than Cyclelicious. The fashion portals are visited by young, college educated women with no children and some spending cash.

Cyclelicious readers are mostly male, “some college,” probably have children, and — except for the 3.5% of you who like the photos of pretty girls on bikes — most of you consider yourselves cyclists, avid cyclists, cycling enthusiasts. In other words, you like to ride bicycles. While fashionistas like clothes and shoes, avid cyclists such as yourselves like bikes, bike clothing, and bike shoes.

A fashion portal like Refinery 29 has 30 times the traffic of Cyclelicious, and most of their visitors don’t identify themselves as ‘cyclists’ so it’s always cool to see them feature stuff like Top 10 Fashionable Bikes For Men.

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Bill Cunningham and the SF International Film Festival

81 year old New York Times style photographer Bill Cunningham gets around his city by bike. Filmmaker Richard Press and producer Philip Gefter followed Cunningham to create “Bill Cunningham New York,” an 88 minute documentary that will show at the San Francisco International Film Festival that began April 22 and continues through May 6. Cunningham will appear at the movie showing at the Kabuki this weekend on May 2.

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San Francisco bike fashion show

San Francisco bike fashion show 2010 poster

You’re invited to the SF Bicycle Coalition’s fun and fabulous Bike Away from Work Party and Fashion Show. Come by and bring a friend! See models showing off the latest in bicycling style during the bike fashion show styled by Gwendolyn Lee Productions. With DJ Sara Tea, sweet raffle prizes and complimentary bicycle valet. Free for SF Bicycle Coalition Members, $10 for non-members or join at the door ($35) & get in free. 


Thursday, May. 13 | 6-10pm, The Rickshaw Stop, 155 Fell St. Those legs and that bike in the poster belong to friend of Cyclelicous Meli of Bikes and the City. The photographer, Dustin, recently moved away from San Francisco all the way to the Santa Cruz Mountains. I’m told he lives off grid in a yurt about two valleys away from my home.

reaching non-traditional cyclists

A-bike photo courtesy of SlashGear, which has an extensive review

As has often been noted, selling expensive fancy bikes to passionate cyclists is where the bike industry excels. Expanding the pool of customers by reaching out to non-riders is much harder to figure out.

The Sinclair A-Bike was discussed in Cyclelicious and VeloVision in 2006, when the product first went on sale. What struck me in reading about the A-Bike again today was that its U.K. distributor is Mayhem, a gadget and novelty company more akin to Brookstone or Sharper Image than a traditional bicycle retailer. A big part of marketing bicycles to non-riders may be realizing that we need to sell bikes in the places that they shop. People who don’t think they want bikes don’t go into bike stores!

Sure Walmart sells bikes, but Walmart is where shoppers trudge to buy diapers and toasters, not fun toys and not transportation equipment. In order to promote the image of bicycles as hip fashion accessories, as seen in Bikes and the City and sac cycle chic and Velo Vogue, we need Electras in Ann Taylor and Stridas in Old Navy and Breezers in Starbucks. In order to promote bicycles as transportation, why not convince car dealers to sell them? Maybe someone who can’t quite qualify for a loan to buy a Prius would be interested in an Xtracycle instead.