Bikes Are Pop Culture

51rd6iyMXFL._AA260_.jpg Just this week, Target started selling designer bikes

and bike dresses are available at Anthropologie.

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BMW is expanding their bike line with more choices.

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Besides spotting the trend, we’ve got our theories on the emergence of bikes in pop culture. What do you think is going on?

This happened last year with fixies at Urban Outfitters, and in New York’s haute couture districts.

While many dissed bikes in speciality retailers, we saw it as consumers buying bikes where they wanted to, regardless of traditional, independent bike shops. Hey if a bike matches a purse or a car, cool, right?



3 Comments

While I read this post, I kept thinking of a t-shirt a friend of mine had: “Real art doesn’t match your sofa.”

Biking is “trendy” now, partly because the tanking economy made people look for more affordable modes of transport than a 13-gallons-per-mile SUV and forms of entertainment than renting a yacht on the local lake. Retailers and designers are jumping on the banana seat, but, unfortunately, if the economy improves, the popularity of biking might nosedive again.

I hope that at least a few of the people who are following the crowd will realize how damned much fun bicycles are and will keep riding them no matter what their bank accounts look like. But when the next big thing comes along, will thousands of designer bicycles be abandoned in garages and basements with the fanny packs and the Furbies?

Good comment and well put. Our take is that the bike shops are the industry’s Achilles heel (I say that with tough love) and they need to reinvent themselves as boutique retailers and most specifically for women shoppers. The stereotypical Angry Shop Monkey does not make a businesswoman, stopping in to shop a new bike for Danskin, comfortable and they need to own that. At some point, I expect to see Apple Store like shops selling fixies, urban, folders and doing so without any dependance on the current dealer/distributor network. [Public Bikes](http://bikehugger.com/2010/03/public-bikes.html) is a recent example, [Mission](http://bikehugger.com/2009/05/mission-bicycles-opens-new-sto.html), [Hub and Bespoke](http://www.hubandbespoke.com/), [Tow n Fro](http://www.twonfro.com/), [Workcycles](http://www.workcycles.com/), [Bicycle Sports](http://bicyclesportshop.com/index.cfm), and [Mellow Johnnys](http://www.mellowjohnnys.com/).

Also worth nothing that our distaste for fixies and labeling them as hipsters is localized to the US; it is a cultural phenomena worldwide and in my travels I’ve [seen them everywhere](http://www.flickr.com/photos/huggerindustries/2923909244/). Consumers are making lifestyle choices with bikes and they’re not doing that with any regard to sports marketing the Tour de France.

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