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By Catherine Bedford, Dashel Helmets

Over 45 major fashion designers showed cycle shorts in their catwalk collections for S/S19 and A/W 19 including: Chanel, Alexander Wang, Fendi, Miu Miu, Roberto Cavalli, Vivienne Westwood, and Prada. 

So, with fashion taking inspiration from cycling – is it time cycling wear took inspiration from fashion? Can we look cool on our commute to work as we weave our bike through the traffic? 

At Dashel Helmets we’ve seen a definite trend, over the last six years, away from functional but unfashionable cycle wear to clothing and accessories that are both practical and fashionable.  Scandinavian lifestyles and designs have long been aspirational in the UK – and they have always cycled to get about in a relaxed, upright style.

When you are commuting in the city, lycra and clip on shoes aren’t necessary – or very appealing. The rise in e-bikes, which are now available to hire by the minute in many major cities, has put an end to the sweaty commute. 

An estimated 1.5 million people commute everyday, rising to 2.6 million people who make at least three trips a week. Looking good when you rock up at the office is all part of the fun. It’s likely you’ll have made the journey to work quicker, easier and with less stress than those in the car or on the train, with the added bonus that you’ve simultaneously achieved your daily workout. 

So, if you want to bring some chic to your cycling without losing functionality – what brands should you look out for?

Let’s start at the top, with one of the most important items for cycling safely; the helmet. Traditionally this has been one of the ugliest items in a cyclist’s wardrobe but that has changed with the creation of the Dashel range of retro-styled cycle helmets. 

The only cycle helmet that wouldn’t look out of place with your Prada shorts. Made in the UK from carbon-fibre, a Dashel helmet is extremely slim fitting and light, without compromising on safety. Tailored to fit, via some special coolmax pads inside which keep you cool and prevent any helmet hair.

The grey sheen of Geek leather cycling shoes is subtle in appearance in daylight, but at night, once illuminated, it reflects the light with an incredible high-vis impact. These look great when cycling and great when you’re not – the perfect peddle to pavement footwear.

Pendle Travel and Cycle body bag is a handy marsupial zip up pouch that can be worn in a number of ways. Crossbody and close to the chest or around the waist. Named after British cycling hero, Victoria Pendleton, these bags work brilliantly from bike to office. No more clunky rucksacks that need to be dragged around during the day, and no need to carry an extra ‘going for drinks after work’ bag with you too. This bag is practical and will look stylish all day long.

Dashing Tweeds create modern, urban tweeds woven in the UK for bespoke and ready to wear tailoring. Their cycling range is designed with the knowledge that the time spent cycling to meetings in the city is only a small part of the day, so it is made with a Lumatwill cloth woven with 3M. The 3M reflects car headlights at night, but by day the fibres look like elegant silver threads. Their range includes blazers, bomber jackets, tailored trousers and capes.

Any clothes made from natural fabrics allow breathability when cycling and merino wool is prized by cyclists for its warmth. Findra, a Scottish company, only use ethically sourced merino from Australia. Their neck warmers are more practical than a traditional scarf when cycling and have no seams for the ultimate in comfort.

A leisurely commute would ideally involve coffee, but carrying your coffee on the bike was pretty impractical and unsafe. Not anymore, with this elegant, copper holder that affixes to your bike with a spring mechanism that holds fast over any bumps in the road.