Bike to Work Uniform for San Francisco’s Constant & Unchanging Slightly Chilly Weather

I’m heading out of the city this weekend and I’m most excited about the chance to bare my shoulders to the warm sun, in PORTLAND of all places.

Here in San Francisco, it’s a nearly constant 63° F year round. Thus I’ve managed to perfect my cycle chic uniform that gets me to work, on a bike and in style.

Gold jacket for extra high visibility, gnome sane?

I like to think that the gold biker cyclist jacket makes me eye-catchingly shiny to motorists, but really it just looks cool. Skinny jeans are not chosen for any ‘hipness’ factor however, they just save me the trouble of rolling up my trousers.

And if you look closely, you’ll note the bamboo bike in the background. This one is by Calfee, but I made my own, with a boot friendly, greaseless carbon belt drive at San Francisco’s Bamboo Bike Studio.

How to Bike in a Skirt Without Wearing Shorts Underneath

Sheer dress, Bicycles, Grooming, New York

Photo from The Sartorialist

 

Today I received an awesome question on my Twitter account:

“Do you have any tips on how to bike in a skirt (other than layering w/shorts)?” -@Twice

The short answer is to sport an A-line skirt, much like this one:

SIZE 4, GREY, A-LINE/FULL

And that’s about all I could cover (pun intended) in 140 characters. But there’s so much more I want to tell you about biking in skirts.

First of all, you don’t need to ride a step-through to bike in a skirt. It’s never made any sense to me how the presence of a top-tube could mess with my outfit while riding, but it does make the mount/dismount a tiny bit easier. I don’t have a step-through so when I’m getting on I just tilt my bike sideways until I can get a leg over without flashing anyone.

Skirt length is really important if you opt to go shorts-less. Make sure you wear something that hits at just above the knee or longer. Cycling posture tends to lengthen the back of your torso making a mini even shorter.

The weight of your fabric is really important, too. Anything gauzy or flow-y tends to blow back off your thighs in your self-generated breeze. Look for sturdier twill weaves that have a bit of heft.

Full, gathered, or pleated skirts also tend to fly up so look for something without excess fabric in the hips.

On the other hand, the longer the skirt, the thinner the fabric needs to be. Only then can you bike like Hanelli:

“I wear whatever I like,” she says breezily. “In fact, I once tied a knot in the hem of a long summer dress to stop it from flowing into the brake and that worked fine.” -Vogue.com

Pencil skirts are nearly impossible, which probably lead to the bike fashion cliché below, but I’d like to design some sort of convertible skirt using zippers and godets made of stretch fabric.

Models, Bike, Bicycle, Fashion, Pencil Skirt, Stephen Meisel

Photographed by Stephen Meisel

 

Bicycle Art: The London Race in Pen & Ink

Pen, Ink, Paper: Bike Art

So intricate that the artist needed to use a magnifying glass, this fantastical London cityscape is 5 meters long and 2 meters tall.

Ugo Gattoni created the giant pen & ink drawing inspired by the London Olympic games, but instead of showing only elite racers, the work also features cyclists from all walks rides of life: moms with kids, teenagers on mountain bikes, fashionistas, hipsters with fixies, pigs, and more.

A smaller, concertina edition (195 cm x 33 cm, unfurled) is available for $24.95 on Nobrow.