Best of British

Well it’s very nearly our first birthday and we have seen over the last 12 months just how much cyclists love their British cycling brands.

Of course not all of our brands are British, but many of our successes are. ‘Made in Britain’ has always been a short cut to quality but British brands also deliver style, tradition and often a great story to tell. We thought we’d take a look at why British brands are so popular with cyclists today.

Take Carradice, a company based in Nelson, Lancashire. A small family firm that have been making the best cycling saddlebags on the planet for nearly a decade. With a loyal workforce committed and proud of their product, they stick to tried and tested manufacturing principles, using quality materials and designs that are proven to work. They produce small quantities of their products and keep everything in house, from the finishing touches, to the sourcing of material, to managing their brand. Still working in the same factory where Carradice was first established in 1932 their brand story is rich and interesting. They appeal to a wide customer base, from the long distance Audax rider, the tourer, through to the city commuter, all of whom look for a quality product that will deliver. Recent collaborations with Victor & Liberty have seen the creation of Harris Tweed saddlebags which have been a huge hit.  They also look for new innovation to meet the needs of the modern rider from laptop inserts to i-pad panniers (watch this space for the imminent launch of the Harrogate and the Bingley!)

city_classics

Other British brands may not yet have the heritage story of Carradice, but they do deliver in spades the legendary British eye for great design. Rapidly becoming iconic cycling brands are Vulpine and Morvelo who have been trail blazing the best of British cycling apparel for a few years.

Vulpine have had amazing reviews for their cycling apparel. Their rain jackets are rapidly becoming iconic. The Harrington is, after all, a British classic.  Vulpine has always focused on being the best; whether it is sourcing quality fabrics such as the best merino, to superb British tailoring. Vulpine always display an uncompromising focus on the needs of the cyclist – whether they be a commuter, trail rider, tourer, sportive rider or pro! This year they sponsored the women’s Matrix Fitness Vulpine racing team ‘on the drops’, and they are soon to launch their Hoy Vulpine range in collaboration with Sir Chris Hoy. These are indeed interesting times for Vulpine.

vulpine

Brighton based Morvelo are another huge success story. Immersed in cycling culture they also have a background in graphic design and this shines through in their bright and bold designs.  Morvelo have a keen eye for detail, pattern and distinct typography. They produce limited editions each season, always with new exciting designs and colours and all chock full of vital detailing using the best performance fabrics. Whilst manufactured in Portugal (using our European neighbours manufacturing prowess) all of their designs are created in house. They also stage the epic City Cross events which add something totally new and fresh to Cyclo Cross in the UK.

morvelo

And let’s not forget Shutt Velo Rapide who capture the quintessential English romance with cycling. Well known for their retro cycling jerseys, inspired by the 60’s and 70’s, they also created one of the summer success stories with the launch of ‘Isobel’. This women’s cycling jersey won plaudits and rave reviews across the board.  They design all of their products in Britain and many of their core jersey ranges and their limited edition Tweed Caps are indeed handmade in Great Britain.

shutt velo

It certainly is an exciting time for British cycling and there are plenty of other up and coming British brands to look out for, such as Meccanica, Henrichs and Huez*. All of whom bring yet more British flair to cycling apparel. Good times indeed.

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