Earlier this month, I visited the SPIN London Urban Cycle Show – the world’s first urban-focused, consumer bicycle show and festival. With the event set at the Old Truman Brewery in trendy Brick Lane, London’s answer to New York City’s East Village, my anticipation was high. With bouncers at the door, a DJ booth, light installation and a bar, I felt as if I was entering a very clean and friendly nightclub (if that exits!).
Editor’s note: How fortunate were we to have a fashionable spy roving the aisles of SPIN, London’s new urban bicycling show? Sawako Furuno, maker of the tres chic leopard print and embossed faux leather bicycle helmets we love, shares her favorite finds in today’s guest post.
After a sip of white wine, I was ready to discover more. Downstairs, colorful bicycles and accessories resembled art installations against the bare concrete walls of the industrial space. With features such as a roller racing machine, a bicycle-powered cinema and a tire-change race, I could see that visitors could have a lot of added fun while discovering the newest bicycles and gear.
It was a relatively small show, but I felt more inspired than at other mainstream bicycle trade shows I have attended. The carefully selected brands were creative, energetic and playful. There were so many exciting brands and shops I could not list them all, but here are my five favorites:
1. LFLECT Reflective Wear
The ‘I heart NY’ T-shirt with a reflective mustache (above) drew me into the fabulous world of LFLECT.
This amazingly hands-on brand had a lot of clever and pretty reflective ideas such as a reflective Fringed Shoe Tongue. The founder Elena Corchero (above) combines craft with innovative technologies. I am always fascinated by the merger between style and function, so I am a big fan now!
My favorite (below) was this ‘a la Issei Miyake’ Reflective Polygon Cotton Scarf.
2. Tamasine Osher Designs Pedal Pod
I love furniture, particularly because of my background as an architect. So I got excited and immediately warmed to architecture-educated Tamasine Osher. Her innovative bicycle storage solutions are simple, yet eye-catching and clever.
I loved that this wall-storage furniture (below) made me imagine a simple life with books and a bike. Awwww.
3. Michaux Club Weekender Bag
I tend not to carry a specific bag when I cycle. But perhaps this classy Michaux Club bag (below) could change my mind. Ex-fashion designer Rachel (she by chance owns my leopard helmet we discovered!) utilizes her expertise to create these classy leather bags with reflective details
The brand name is from the original 1895 New York-based Michaux Club, which provided a place for the fashion elite to cycle and socialize, but the product is made in England. I had to smell the leather myself; it holds the typical genuine and satisfying fragrance.
5. Vulpine Cycling Apparel
I am not a very sporty cyclist, but more of ‘cycling about town’ type. So I have not yet invested in performance clothing. However, I really liked this top from Vulpine (below), which channels a Scandinavian, minimalistic design air. The material feels very soft and of good quality, with a lot of hidden functions such as a zipper cover, which would lend comfort on the bike. Above all, I heart the ‘V’ detail of the buttons.
5. Atomic22 Infinity3D Bicycle Security
Bike theft in London rivals New York City. I would never leave my Pashely bike on a street in case my Brooks saddle — apparently the most sought-after — would be stolen and sold on the black market . Here is a solid solution. This UK-based technology company Atomic22 makes locks (below) that protect every component on your bike from theft.
The best booth design goes to Luvhandles (below), which had my black crocodile as part of the installation (thank you!)
This show was so relevant to our everyday cycling life and I look forward to visiting or exhibiting there next year.
Photos: Sawako Furuno
Want more SPIN? Check the summary video from the show here: