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Bicycle Tsunami has planned a bicycle flash mob Sunday Feb 26th. We’re not sure where we’ll all be converging (it’s very hush-hush till we get the email the day before) but we’ve been assured it’s within a 30 minute ride north of downtown Dallas.

So we’re planning a themed ride from Main Street Gardens to the location! And since it’s Oscars night, its only appropriate that we dress to the nines for a bicycling pre-Oscar Party ride! (Yes, I’ll be wearing my sparkle heels!)

From Juleskills on Flickr

We’ll meet around 1pm, leaving Main St Garden at 1:30pm to head north. And if anyone biking over from N Oak Cliff wants to ride to the Garden with us, we’ll be leaving Salvage House Boutique around 12:45pm. (Facebook invite here)

Apparently anyone’s able to get in on the Bicycle Tsunami info. The website at bicycletsunami.wordpress.com instructs you to send and email with a photo of your bike (cause it’s “just more entertaining to open emails with a photo than opening a bunch that all say ‘please add me to the list’ “) to bicycletsunami@gmail.com to get the location info the day before.

We’re excited to see who else rides in from other parts of Dallas. It should be quite a site to see a bunch of cyclists all taking over the neighborhood. Hope to see you there!

You may have noticed a few changes to the website recently.  Yes, time to reset your bookmarks – we’re leaving the Cycle Chic family to become our very own group, Cycle Style.

We’ve had a lovely year doing the Dallas Cycle Chic blog. As we’ve met Dallas riders on the streets, in the cycle shops and at large group rides, we’ve come to deeply appreciate the inspiring and broad range of cycle styles in our city.   You are all so different and yet all the same: from cardigan wearing ladies crushing trails to hardcore racers in spandex packs, you all shared with us your passion for the wind in your hair and the whir of spokes and gears at your feet. Our growing circle of cyclists has inspired us to grow beyond what the Cycle Chic trademark allows.

The critical divergence from Cycle Chic is in helmet promotion. Cycle Chic, a trademarked worldwide brand and organization begun by Mikael Colville-Andersen, promotes cycling as a part of everyday life.  There are thousands of riders around the world who bike in everyday clothes without helmets, and Mikael is big into helmet research and non-helmet advocacy with the European Cyclists’ Federation.

We here in Dallas don’t want to exclude our fellow cyclist friends from our blog because they choose to be law-abiding citizens and wear helmets. We celebrate all the people who choose to hop on their bike and incorporate cycling into their lifestyle.   So, we’re branching off from Cycle Chic to promote and celebrate cycling in Dallas; people who wear helmets and those who don’t, weather you wear spandex or a suit and tie or anything in between.

The best part is, we all agree that more cyclists on the road is the best way improve the safety of all cyclists. Just get on your bike and ride – to the grocer, to pick up the kids from school, to the nail salon, to grab dinner and drinks, to work, to the opera, on a sunset ride, to grandma’s….

The more cyclists on the roads, the more visible and safer we all become. This promotional video from the Dutch Cycling Embassy has some great info about the correlation between cyclist safety, and number of cyclists on the road.  Did you know Denmark experienced a decrease in cycling in the 70s? Major policy changes, awareness campaigns, and infrastructure decisions have contributed to cycling as a big part of daily life there now.

Cycling For Everyone

This graph (and more stats) from the French Federation of Bicycle Users shows the same correlation.

The data, from 8 cycling countries, shows the correlation between the frequency of traffic fatalities (dark line), the bicycle modal share/% of people on bikes vs. cars, buses or any other transit (the red bars), and percentage of people wearing helmets (yellow numbers). So the correlation is fewer accidents when there are more cyclists on the road (regardless of helmet wearing.)

Helmet research aside, cycling environments differ everywhere for many reasons, and it’s up to individual users to be aware of their environment and do what makes them feel safe enough to ride. (Aside from following the laws.) Some people ride sidewalks, some ride roads, some ride slow, some ride fast, some wear orange vests, some wear stilettos. Dallas Cycle Style encourages everyone to get on their bike and flaunt their cycle style.

Cycling in Dallas may be in fledgling development, but there are hundreds of us in the metroplex – and more folks than you think don’t even own a car! Although Tracy and Amanda started this blog, it’s a bog for you, to celebrate the lives of people in this city who love their bikes. So take photos next time you bike to the bar with your buddies or sack-up at the grocery store and post the photos to our new Facebook group. Share the love!! And thanks for contributing to Dallas’ bicycle revolution.

Yesterday’s Tour de Taco ride was off to a great start – we talked with a few riders before they took off.

Brandi brought her pup along on the bike leash (how cool!) When everyone was getting turned around and lined up for take-off, the dog was barking like “let’s get going already! What’s the hold up!  We’re ready!” Ha!

Luis brought his trust old bike along for the ride – he thought his was the oldest neglected little ride till he saw mine!  Thanks.  My fave part of Luis’s get-up is the piggie light on the handlebars.

Norma’s everyday road bike was incapacitated so she rode her racing bike with toe clip shoes – and a hot little pink skirt! She’s ridden the Hotter Than Hell ride the past 3 years, and bought 3 cool old road bikes on craigslist in the last month!

The party bike! These folks got a nice set-up,  with two side-seated bikes attached inline. Impressive ingenuity and serious chillin style.

Brandon and his trusty steed. (I apologize Brandon, not the best photo ever.) Love the colors though. And how he seems to be making this orange line on the sidewalk!

Jeff brought out his touring bike. He once biked just about the entire coast of California. Check out the fancy gear shifters at the end of the handlebars.

Karen was really feeling the lime green! She fell in love with this bike at “Bamboo” so when she saw one for sale on Craigslist she couldn’t resist. Living in Deep Ellum she gets to ride it around a lot.

Meredith borrowed the bike and helmet from her neighbor so she could join her friends on the ride. So glad you could make it, Meredith! I hope we get to meet the owner some day – anyone with streamers and a matching helmet has some seriously playful style.

Dang it I’m so bad with names.  These chicks have serious style.  I wish you could see the fringe leather bag that matches the moccasins. And yes, we’re still enjoying our Christmas decor too.

  

Two commuters even brought their decked-out folding bikes!!

Fun tights always complete a cycling outfit.  Especially when it’s a bit nippy out. What great fabric on her bike bag too!

Joe rides hundreds of miles a year. All ages of cyclists came out for the ride – and all riding levels too. (Except the real young’ens I guess. There was one young man with his dad on a sweet tandem-with-kids-bike-attachment. Hope to see them next time and snap a photo.)

It was such a gorgeous day.  Great turnout. Thanks for organizing, Paul!

(Update: these opinions are not endorsed by the Cycle Chic brand.)

I’ve finally settled into the harsh reality that Dallas isn’t Copenhagen. And have therefore decided to wear a bike helmet more often.

The Bishop Arts District and N Oak Cliff are pretty dreamy.

You’d think it would be obvious, Dallas differs in many ways from Copenhagen – maybe I’ve just been in denial.

As I pedal my heart out to work and home, to pick up my Urban Acres share, meet friends at Eno’s, grab something at the grocery, visit my sister…. I live in this imaginary world where Dallas is bikeable.

The harsh reality began to creep in as I was explaining to a friend how my morning commute could be made simpler by adding a bike lane on the northernmost lane of the Zang bridge into downtown.

Biking the Zang Bridge into downtown

I proceeded to tell her why that route is so treacherous and why this epiphany of mine would be such a major improvement, when she added “And people thought I was nuts biking in London – you guys deserve purple hearts!  At least London has bike lanes!”  Yeah, I guess it is pretty dangerous…

Then the bike lane debacle began to unwind and it hit me that Dallas makes a lot of City plans that only sit on shelves, never read.

Dallas saw bike lanes for a day: Ross Better Block 2011

Thank goodness for those hardworking citizens of the Fort Worth Ave Development Group and businesses owners in the area who are fronting money and pushing the city for paint on pavement. We might get bike lanes afterall, but I realize that not everyone’s so aware of this need nor on-board to get it done. Not like bike lanes in Dallas get preferential treatment when fixing potholes or clearing snow (as in Copenhagen.)

And despite all the people I know who ride frequently, there are many in Dallas who have not touched their bike in decades and can’t remember that feeling of freedom with the wind in your hair and the birds chirping with the smell of fresh cut grass or woodburning fireplaces… Dallas drivers in their SUVs and F250s tend to get pushy, and dangerously aggressive toward cyclists. Or just plain don’t see us. (Check out the really great bike awareness campaign my friend saw in London.)

The cherry on top was another friend-of-a-friend who’s been seriously injured while biking.

It’s tragic. And it’s all convinced me that maybe wearing a helmet in Dallas is a good idea, as a realistic assessment of the biking atmosphere here.

I’m in the market for a stylish new helmet!

The cat’s pretty much out of the bag. Remember all the photos from the Cyclist Census back in April? And the lawn movie, the Texas Theatre, the photo exhibit, and the bike polo, and….

We’re doing it again in 2012, only we’re revamping the plan.

Cyclist Census: check

“Face of Biking in Dallas” mad online voting competition: check

Blowout party with bicycle fashion: check

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We all had a fantastic ride to the boutiques in West Village and Henderson Ave Sunday afternoon. We found some real gems of  shopper’s paradise, got some killer Christmas gifts… for ourselves *wink*, and got to know more cool folks in our bike community here. Then most of us stuck around for dinner, drinks, and games at Barcadia. Don’t worry though if you had to miss this one – we’ll have more Chic Boutique Rides to come.  And if you have a great idea for a ride shoot us an email! DallasCycleChic@gmail.com

Chris at Biking in Dallas got some great shots from the ride!

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Jonny commutes every day by bicycle from his North Oak Cliff house to his Bishop Arts yoga studio, Tranquilo, but today I spied his two gorgeous daughters in tow too. So pretty!!

We may not see as many people cycling around Dallas in super stylish outfits as we might see in other major cities, (ahem! Copenhagen) but we still have a lot of very cool cyclists to celebrate.  These people hop on their bikes and GO.  They do it in their way in their everyday clothes as part of their every day life, and we want to celebrate that.  If you see someone embracing the cycling lifestyle, hollar at them “Hey!  You on the Bike!  Can I take your photo?!”  and send those pics in to us.  I guarantee you they’ll be complimented.  Here’s a couple I snapped today outside of my shop, Salvage House Btq, in North Oak Cliff.

Casual and styling, with his layered collars, creamy sunglasses, and high rolled skinny jeans, I had to run out of the house and yell for him to come back because this guy was zooming down Melba on his bike FAST.

Join us tomorrow Sunday December 11th for the Dallas Cycle Chic holiday shopping tour by bike. Come for the holiday shopping, or take advantage of the excuse for a fun afternoon on your bicycle with friends.

Our Chic Boutique Ride will take you along to our favorite locally-owned boutique shops in the West Village and on Henderson Ave. Did I mention snacks along the way? A little birdie told me we may start with some bubbly…

Meet at Transit Bikes on Blackburn at McKinney and we’ll start-off about 1:00pm. Don’t forget your gloves, light, helmet, and basket/bungees/cart. Or come by Transit Bikes a bit early to get set!

It’s been cold this week.  If you’re like me and really cherished time spent poolside during our long hot summer, this cold-weather thing came all at once a little abruptly. I’m still pulling out my winter-wear and it’s been below freezing for 3 nights already.

SO in the spirit of fun winter fashion and gearing up for our Chic Boutique Ride coming up this Sunday, here is some winter biking inspiration for us all.

Granted, we most likely won’t have snow Sunday, but it’s highly likely we will see snow sometime this winter (given how cold things have started out I’d say we’ll see plenty of snow…yes, that was a  a 20% chance of snow Tuesday night)  You can’t say it isn’t possible to bike in the snow, getting your everyday things done in a very functional outfit. (Colored tights!)

Hopefully it won’t get this extreme in Dallas.

But if it did, and you were caught out in it, you would have the satisfaction of knowing you aren’t the only one to endure the elements this way.  There are many thousands of stylish people around the world riding their bikes through much harsher winters, and there are indeed a small number of people in Dallas who do not own a car, whose only mode of transportation (by necessity and choice) is walking or biking.  Even on snow-days. Just ponder that…

In fact, winter biking isn’t that bad.  You build up quite a lot of body heat under those layers. The key is to watch the weather so you’re prepared and wear layers easy to remove or add so you stay comfortable. On that note, here are some stylish winter cyclists spotted in Copenhagen (the bike capital of the world) from the blog Copenhagencyclechic.com:

     

This gentleman has some stunning class.

With some good gloves, a hat and a scarf, I’d say the best part of winter biking is getting to wear so many layers. It’s a refreshing change from having to bike around half-naked all summer to stay cool. Send us photos of you and your friends winter biking.  We’d love to see how you’re handling it with unabashed style and warmth.

Get out your bike basket and find your scarf – Sunday December 11th 2011 will be the first Cycle Chic Boutique Ride, visiting the best locally-owned boutiques of the West Village and Henderson Ave. There’s a good variety of shops with guys and ladies clothes, bike-friendly home furnishings, and odds and ends perfect for socking stuffing.

We’re meeting at Transit Bikes on Blackburn at McKinney Ave so you can arrive early to air your tires, lube your chain, buy a basket, and get that red flashing rear light you’ve been meaning to buy.

At about 1:00pm we’ll leave Transit for our first boutique stop at the new Demerara before heading to Henderson for Gypsy Wagon, Another Time & Place, Pandemonium!, and We Are 1976. Around 4pm we should be ready to bike back to the West Village.

There will be holiday cookies, wine, cheese and snacks along the way and some good store discounts including 10% off at Gypsy Wagon and 60% off at Another Time & Place since they’re moving.

If this is your first adventure to the West Village by bike here are some handy directions from the Katy Trail and the Cityplace DART Station.

Happy holidays and happy holiday shopping! We’ll see you Sunday.

With inspiration from Copenhagen Cycle Chic, visually embracing how urban cycling and style converge in our everyday lives, we began Dallas Cycle Style to promote Dallas cyclists flaunting their style.
Dallas has it's own unique urban culture, with it's funky southern flair, traditional values, obsession with fashion, and a pioneering entrepreneurial spirit that's made this region great.
Follow our biking adventures and tell us about yours. We'd love to highlight all the great people cycling in our city but we can't be everywhere at once. Hope to meet you soon.

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