This May is very grey. It is cold, rainy and windy. Luckily some people make the city less grey by pimping their bikes. They paint them, decorate them with flowers, or other objects.
These are my three favourite bikes of this month:
In one week we had many festivities in Amsterdam; on the 30th of April Queensday and the coronation of the new king; on the 4th of May the Remembrance of the Death at Dam square and on the 5th of May both Liberation Day and the championship celebrations of Amsterdam’s football club Ajax.
After all these celebrations, with many people in the streets from all over the world, we are now taking it easy. Just enjoying the city and reliving about all the beautiful festivities.
Paddy and Philip from the blog Cycling with… went for a cycle with Job Cohen, former mayor of Amsterdam. On a sunny day, Job told them a lot about the history of Amsterdam, about living cities and about interesting things that happened during his time as mayor.
Job Cohen was Amsterdam’s mayor for more than 8 years, he was the first to wed a same sex couple and he was awarded with the title European Hero by Time Magazine.
Before kids can cycle themselves, they have already been on a bike many times. Dads and mums take them in a carrier, a child seat or in the cargo bike and cycle them around. To daycare, to the supermarker or just for a relaxed ride through town. Kids love it. You see them looking around, enjoying the speed when cycling down a bridge or just sleeping like angels.
Love and Sun: this is what I wish you all for this Valentine’s day!
The cold and white feeling we missed for Xmas is in town since a week, Amsterdammers love it and keep on cycling very chic!
Little smile but large shopping bag, this girl is cycling back from town with just the ingredients you need to begin the week-eeeeeeend!
Meet ‘Miss fair fashion’ Marieke Eyskoot: her mission is to make fair fashion normal in the Netherlands. “For me fashion is a way to celebrate life. I love it! But it should also be nice for the people who make it. I can’t enjoy clothes that people made in terrible working conditions.” For many years people have asked Marieke where they can buy fair fashion, what to look out for when shopping, easy things they can do for a more ‘fair lifestyle’ and if a fair lifestyle isn’t too expensive? Those questions made Marieke decide to write the book ‘Talking Dress- Vertelt je alles over eerlijke kleding (en lifestyle)’ that was recently published.
‘Talking Dress’ is a guide –written in Dutch – to a fair lifestyle in the Netherlands and Belgium. The book shows you the way to your own fair fashion lifestyle. Ranging from shopping tips to DIY-tricks, from washing instructions to swapping ideas, from clothes to accessories, beauty products, food and even marriage: Talking Dress makes it easy (and fun!) to do good and look great at the same time.
We love Marieke’s book and know that she uses her bike every day, so we asked her for an interview. We met in the lovely fair lunchroom and boutique ‘Beter & Leuk’ on the Eerste Oosterparkstraat.
Marieke and her bike
“This interview is a tribute to my bike. I bought it second hand in 1996 for 100 guilders and I have cycled it daily through the streets of Amsterdam since then.” The frame is from 1967 and it is a classical black Gazelle Dutch bike. But after more than 40 years some essential parts can’t be repaired anymore. So Marieke has to get a new bike. The decision of which bike to get was an easy one; “A Roetz bike of course!” Roetz’ bikes are sustainable and fair bikes made in the Netherlands. (Read more about Roetz on our blog).
“I love to cycle and I use my bike every day, to go to my office, to meetings, to go out and to go for cycles in the weekend. I like to go fast on my bike. It is a great break every day to cycle in between the many meetings, phone calls and long hours behind a computer. The movement, the wind or sun and just being outside for a while make me feel relaxed. When I pass bridges I always slow down a bit, to enjoy the beautiful city and look at the water.”
“I can still clearly remember the moment I learned to cycle. I was with my father practising in the street where I grew up. I was cycling and he was running beside me, holding me. Suddenly I heard him quite far behind me shouting ‘I am not holding you anymore!’ and from that moment on, I could cycle on my own!”
- Order Marieke’s book ’Talking Dress’ (19,95 euros, free shipment in the Netherlands).
- Marieke co-organises MINT, the fair fashion section of international fashion tradeshow Modefabriek
This year’s Cycle Chic Conference in Budapest was legendary! The Cycle Chic Republic was united in the Hungarian capital. So it was a weekend full of bike events, chatting about cycling, photographing, tweeting and instagramming with bloggers from o.a. Vienna, Copenhagen, Berlin, Vitoria (Brazil) and Budapest.
Hungary Cycle Chic organised the conference and found many sponsors to make our stay even more enjoyable and the cycling events even cooler. The main event for us was definitely the Bicycle fashion show, in which normal people walked the catwalk with their bikes, dressed up in their best clothes. It was so nice that we decided to dedicate a whole blogpost to it, that will follow later this week.
Budapest is working hard on improving their cycling infrastructure. The very successful Critical Mass meetings have certainly left their mark. And now organisations like Hungary Cycle Chic and the Hungarian Cyclist Club are taking bicycle activism over to make the city more bicycle friendly. But as you can see on the pictures; Budapest has bicycle infrastructure and cyclists, and was quite a comfortable city to cycle around. So let’s hope the amount of cyclists, cycle lanes and bicycle traffic lights will only improve!
Thanks to the Hungarian Cyclist Club, the European Mobility Week and the Center for Budapest Transport for sponsoring the cycling events. Thanks Csepel Bikes for lending us our very comfortable and cool bikes! And thanks Anker’t for being such a cool bar and for sponsoring the afterparty after the fashion show.
I often get spotted while taking pictures of our beloved Amsterdammers on 2 wheels! Most of the time people smile at me or even strike their best pose for the picture. And sometimes people also wave at me, like this nice guy I photographed from the bridge above the Vondelpark.
Today, the weather was so beautiful that we decided to take our bikes up to the North of Amsterdam. Half an hour cycling takes you away, right into the heart of the real idyllic Dutch countryside where water is everywhere. So all kinds of solutions have been created to cross over, like for example this “floating platform”.
We were not the only ones with this idea today: we met those 2 friendly Amsterdammers while crossing the river. Thanks for posing girls!
Cycling is very social, all over the world people cycle together. In a lot of pictures from the Cycle Chic Republic below you see ‘doubling’ (two people on one bike) something you see a lot in Amsterdam!
Japanese painting is one of the oldest and most highly refined arts, encompassing a wide variety of genres and styles. This idyllic scene, shot at the heart of Amsterdam ( in the Vondelpark) took me away to ancient Japan for a couple of seconds: Geisha-style knotted hair, a touch of red on the lips, and …isn’t that the shadow of a cherry blossom tree?
And then suddenly, summer is there! Check out Amsterdam’s summer dresses…
In the Cycle Chic Republic it is all about Style over Speed. In Amsterdam it generally is, you do not see that many sporty cyclists in the city that just want to go as fast as possible. What you do see are stylish speedy cyclists. They wear normal clothes, they cycle a Dutch bike, but they are going really fast! Probably late for a date, or just work, or a boring meeting or maybe their kids are waiting to be picked up from school…
Taking a buddy on your bike over a bridge is a nice friendship demonstration!
It’s Red Bicycle Day in the Cycle Chic Republic. Check out the pics from all over the world.
‘The sun never sets in the Cycle Chic Republic’
For the first time since 1997 it is possible to ice skate on Amsterdam’s canals. Tonight there will be a ice-skate-disco party and tomorrow a race at the Keizersgracht. So we all get on our bike, cycle through the snow to the canals and start ice skating! (We also tried ice-cycling but will need some more practice to learn that properly…)
Totally relaxed she is moving faster than the tram on a bridge over the river Amstel. We’re telling you: the bike is better!
When cycling in Amsterdam, don’t be surprised if you’re overtaken by a little 4-year old speedster on her little pink (or his little blue) bike.
It sometimes looks like Amsterdam toddlers learn how to ride a bike, before they have even taken their first proper step.
To the supermarket, through the Vondelpark, to daycare, just like their parents, today’s youth loves their bicycles.
As a parent, you should however always take into account the tiny legs, small lungs and short concentration span of your child, which together cause some cycling tours with your youngster to end in a public transport ride or a long walk home.