Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Freedom Machine

Like many brave women before me, I have ventured into the field of classic bicycles and am well on my way to selecting the one for me. This all started at least 2 years ago when I was working at Moonee Ponds. I drove past a shop window that was showcasing two beautiful classic bikes, with a curved retro frame, headlights, wicker baskets, wide saddles and mud guards. I was in love! But I hadn’t ridden a bike for over 10 years. First things first – find out all about these bikes!

I discovered that they were “Italian Classic Bikes” and were out of my price range. I found an old racer on eBay which I began riding on summer weekends and soon got into the routine. I loved the freedom I felt riding to the city, Williamstown and along the Maribyrnong River to Highpoint.

Fast forward to May 2009 – the bike has been leading a quiet life in the garage and I happen to come across The Sartorialist, checking out the Bicycles section, I fell in love all over again. Those women just looked so carefree, healthy and stylish and I wanted to be one! I soon found myself catching up on RidingPretty –Bicycle Chic California, Girls and Bicycles, Lovely Bicycle!, Change Your Life. Ride A Bike! and EcoVelo and was hooked all over again.

I began the research, first step – start a spreadsheet of course! Beginning with the Electra Amsterdam, I sought one out at a bike shop in Williamstown only to find the Grand 1888 instead, I also discovered that Gazelle and Pashley are available her and came across the Indian Bicycle Shop in St Kilda.

I tried out the Grand 1888, love the upright style and the steadiness that comes with a heavier bike. Is this the one? I also trialed my friend’s shine red fixie from the Indian Bicycle Shop, nope – definitely need at least a 3 speed.

Last night we visited a brand new Pashley dealer and I’m looking forward to taking a Sonnet out for a spin on Saturday morning, tomorrow after work it’s off to Commuter Cycles to check out the Gazelle range. I just have to remember that I’m saving up for this with my weekend job so shouldn’t be taking delivery of any of these beauties until October!

On to accessories, I’ve been really impressed with Acorn Bags (they just don’t deliver to OZ), Basil and Queen Bee Creations. As for helmets – when are they going to bring something to Australia that doesn’t make me feel like I should be pedaling faster??



This morning’s pearl: AllIWannaDoIsSleep

3 comments:

Ellise Chapman said...

Hi Christie,
Great blog, I've just spent my last few moments of the working week checking it out. So much to read, so little time. I just found it today as I was searching for the name of the italian bike shop in Moonee Ponds (still cannot find it and the place never seems to be open. I want one of the wicket baskets in their window!). Look forward to reading more as I've just become a follower. All the best, Ellise. PS. I've posted a few times on vintage bikes on my new blog if you want to check it out (http://charleswhyte.blogspot.com/)

Christie said...

Hi Ellise, so glad you're enjoying my ramblings. I found the same problem with that place. For a gorgeous basket I'd recommend heading to Sedonia in Seddon - that's where I got my basket upgrade from (will have a pic soon). If they've run out then I also saw them at one of those gorgeous decorating/homewares shops on Coventry St South Melbourne, happy hunting! Oh and I'm looking forward to checking out your blog too

Ellise Chapman said...

I just saw this reply now! Can't you tell I'm new to blogging!? I didn't think to look back here. Wish I had thought of Sedonia. My husband got me one for Christmas and stained it (I found it in a bike shop in Clifton Hill). It does the job nicely but it's fairly basic next to your baby :)

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