Bicycle fashion: 10 things you need to know to be a stylish and safe city cyclist

Bicycle Fashion
Bicycle Fashion

After what seemed like an un-ending winter sans wheels, biking season is finally upon us! Freeing urban dwellers from the cramped confines of public transport and high-traffic break lights, the two-wheel form of transportation is often your best bet. However, biking does come with its fair share of obstacles, and both safety and style are at the top of that list (be sure to refresh yourself on the rules of the road before getting started). In honour of the cherished transit changeover, we present our foolproof guide to being a stylish and safe city cyclist.

See our safe and stylish bicycle fashion picks »

1. Wear a helmet

While many may argue the contrary, we believe wearing a helmet (and a cute one at that!) is one safety element you should never avoid while riding your bike. To ensure you’ve got the proper fit, follow this tip: your helmet should rest the width of two fingers above your brows; the side and chinstraps should be snug.

2. Get a functional bag

The right cycling bag is a mix between size, style and security. The tried-and-true backpack style provides a variety of size and style options that are essential to the chic cycle-friendly wardrobe. Leather backpacks are a great way to utilize the functional style, while maintaining a sophisticated and polished look. Sometimes arriving with a backpack is not appropriate, for those times try a satchel. The over-the-shoulder style is a more elegant option that can be worn securely while navigating city streets.

3. Wear a dress, the right dress

Cycling doesn’t mean giving up dresses, it means choosing the right dresses. Dress length and leg mobility are the two deciding factors. To keep fabric from the danger zone (a.k.a. the pedals) choose dresses that are at about knee length. Try a snug wrap skirt style, or tea dress silhouette that allow legs to move with ease.

4. Opt for a jumpsuit

This all-in-one look provides an easy way to look polished and professional. To avoid unglamorous wipeouts, it is of the upmost importance to avoid loose fabric around bike pedals. Choose jumpers that are tapered at the ankle or cropped a little higher on the calf. Some simple accessorizing can take a modest jumpsuit from a casual lunch to a night on the town. Try a statement necklace to glam it up or tone it down with some soft earrings.

5. Or a structured romper

Like jumpsuits, rompers provide a safe and sophisticated look. As temperatures continue to climb the romper keeps the bicycle fashion-inclined cool, both metaphorically and physically. To keep the look elegant and not childish, choose rompers with some structure, like a peplum or collar.

6. Invest in secure footwear

A secure running shoe is ideal for cycling. However, like a backpack, running shoes are not always appropriate. Secure flats or sandals are a great option to straddle the line between fashion and function. Choose a lace up shoe with cutouts for a lighter summer look or flats with a strap around the ankle for added style and security.

7. Mid-shade sunglasses are best

When it comes to city-cycling sunglasses play double-duty as a fashionable accessory and safety equipment. Optimal vision is imperative when cruising in the summer sun. To be aware of all surroundings choose lenses that are not too dark or too light.

8. Opt for functional accessories

Lights and bells are not only accessories, they are cycle-musts according to Canadian law. A bell, paired with a front and rear light allows cyclists to communicate with fellow urban travellers. Try rechargeable lights to avoid getting stuck with dead batteries and a bell that can be securely attached to handlebars. Meanwhile, a lock and cable combo allow riders to link wheels to bike and bike to secure, stationary thing. Lock manufacturers provide a variety of options based on the value of the bike.

9. You’ll need a basket…

A basket is obviously essential for things like, safely carrying a picnic, and transferring baguettes. These stylish carriers can be attached to both the front and back, and come in a variety of styles and colours. The important thing to keep in mind when choosing a basket is durability. Bikes spend most of their lives outdoors facing the elements—choose a basket that will last!

10. And finally, the bike!

All of the above would be null and void without a bike. Price, comfort and style are all important factors, so be sure to visit a few stores before committing.

More Style