Inspired by Copenhagen Cycle Chic

Dutch Cycling Trends

Happy chaos

happy chaos by aude

by Aude

In Amsterdam, everybody finds his own way around. It’s a happy chaos sometimes. Amsterdammers are used to it, especially in the city center where the chance to bump into a friend is big!


Instamonth: June’s top 10 Instagram pics

June, the month that the summer started, that the parks are everyone’s favourite places to be, and the month that the city turned orange because of the World Cup.

Check out Amsterdam Cycle Chic’s top 10 of June’s Instagram pics:

1. Daily life in Amsterdam; cycling together on one bike to work

2. Good morning Amsterdam, cycling along the Amstel river

3. Lady cycling on the skinny bridge

4. Dutch girl in orange wearing her bike chain as a belt

5. Cycling in the Vondelpark

6. Bridges are the Dutch hills

7. Cool hair!

8. A rose for your girlfriend?

9. Last phone call and then the weekend really starts

10. Cargo bike parking sign at the Beatrixpark

Instamonth
Are you already following us on Instagram? You should, if you want to learn more about Amsterdam’s cycling culture and enjoy the diversity of cyclists and bikes in Amsterdam’s streets. Every month we will post the most liked Instagram shots here on our blog.


Cyclist of the month… Taco, founder VANMOOF bikes

Taco grew up in the east of the Netherlands, but while visiting his aunt in Amsterdam as a child he immediately fell in love with the city. Taco loves the beauty of the city centre with its canals but most of all he likes the city’s cycling culture. That’s why he became bike entrepreneur and founded the Dutch bike company VANMOOF. VANMOOF’s mission is to create the perfect urban bike and convince people all around the world to travel by bike instead of by car.

VANMOOF
In 2009 Taco and his brother Ties founded VANMOOF. Now, five years later, you see their bikes a lot in Amsterdam’s streets and they are sold in more than 30 countries around the world. Taco: “We want to be more than just a bike brand. We want to be a movement. A movement for change. The ’MOOF’ part in our name comes from the word movement. VAN we just added to give it some Dutch flavour. Our mission is to get more cyclists on the streets in inner cities globally. Because more than half of the world’s population lives in city centres, there is an increasingly heavy burden on traditional means of inner city transport. The bike is the solution for inner city mobility. At VANMOOF we pursue only one goal: help the ambitious city dweller worldwide move around town fast, confident and in style.”
taco founder and CEO of Vanmoof Dutch bike company

Amsterdam love
“My love for Amsterdam started very young. I think I was only 7 years old when visited Amsterdam for the first time, to sleep over at my auntie’s place. She lived in the city centre, in a neighbourhood that was still a bit rough. But I loved it. And I still do. I love the hustle and bustle on the streets, the beauty of the canals and I like its relatively small size. It is a perfect city to go for a walk (and a bike ride of course!).”

‘City council, stand up for bikes!’
“Amsterdam is the cycling capital of the world, but we have to be careful not to lose our great cycling culture. At the moment it is not changing for the better. That is why the city council should really make a statement and stand up for bikes.” The main problems according to Taco are the lack of space for the cyclists and bike theft: “There are often too many cyclists sharing the bike lanes. The city council should give them more space by taking space from the cars. The historic city centre should be car free.”

The war against bike theft
Another problem is bike theft: “Many people in Amsterdam use cheap bikes, they are afraid a nice bike would get stolen. Because they don’t care about their bikes and because their bikes are of bad quality, many bikes are left on the streets in the bike parking spaces. If bike theft would be less, then people would buy a better bike, a bike they would care about and that they can use for many years. This would reduce of lack of bike parking space. It would also be better for the environment; no throw-away bikes, but bikes that last for many years.” That is why VANMOOF is developing GPS and GSM integrated in their bikes. “All our electric bikes already have GPS and two of our bikes that were stolen in the US were found back through the GPS. We work with Vodafone and to make ‘find my bike’ as much used as ‘find my iphone’.”
taco founder and CEO of Vanmoof Dutch bike company

Cycling in New York and London
“I cycled in many cities all over the world. My favourite city to cycle in is New York. Not many people realise how nice it is to cycle there. But it is flat, you can cycle through the whole of Manhattan, and of course enjoy Central Park by bike.” London is the worst city Taco cycled in: “I am simply scared to death when cycling in London. The fast driving cars are not used to cyclists and the sidewalks are so high, that you have nowhere to go when you feel an unsafe situation is coming up.”
Want to know more about VANMOOF? Check out their website!


Holland! Holland!

Since the fabulous match of last Friday (5-1 against Spain), the orange fever is higher than ever! So, one hour before their next match against Australia, Dutchies from all ages are going wild again! This is what Amsterdam looks like today..

holland3
holland0
holland2
holland9
holland7
holland4
holland5
holland6
holland11
somtimes just a touch
holland8
but the spirit is there
holland1
cycling..
holland13
..or sitting behind on a amsterdam’s rickshaw!
holland12

Reportage by Aude


Cycling for all ages

In the Netherlands almost everyone cycles. Around 85% of the people owns a bike. Women cycle a bit more often than men and young people between 12 and 18 years old go for a few more rides than the rest. But the differences are small. See below a graph I found on the website of the Fietsersbond, the Dutch Cyclists’ Union, about the amount of bike rides people make per day, per age group.

Aantal fietsritten per persoon per dag verdeeld naar leeftijd. Bron: MON 2007

bike rides per person per day

Cycling gives you independence, you can go wherever you want, when you want and by yourself. This is important for everyone but especially for kids and for elderly. Besides being independent, by cycling they stay active and healthy. I think all around the world people should be able to cycle safely through their cities, no matter what your age is! It makes life so much happier….

Lady cycling in Amsterdam #Amsterdam #dutchbike #coolshoes #dutch #women #greyhair #bikeams #cyclechic #cycling #bicycle

Lady cycling in Amsterdam

Husband and wife cycling in Amsterdam
Two boys cycling in Amsterdam
Cycling home from school #girlonbike #Amsterdam #cycling
Young guy cycling in Amsterdam
upload
#Amsterdam #cycling #man


Instamonth: May’s top 10 Instagram pictures

Are you already following us on Instagram? You should, if you want to learn more about Amsterdam’s cycling culture and enjoy the diversity of cyclists and bikes in Amsterdam’s streets. Every month we will post the most liked Instagram shots here on our blog.

This is the top 10 of May:

1. Dog in crate

2. Mother and sons

3. Father and son

4. Eating an apple while cycling in the rain

5. Rainy day cycling

6. Bike parking Amsterdam central station

7. Flower pants

8. Google likes bikes

9. Mother with cargo bike and kids

10. Now that is Cycle Chic, sir!


Recycled Fixed, the movie!

Recycled Fixed – 2nd Hand Bikes from tiago rosado on Vimeo.

Tiago Rosado realized this cool film with badseedfilms
Vitor is a Portuguese bike fanatic who owns and runs Recycled Bicycles here in Amsterdam. Meredith already made Vitor one of our cyclist of the month on our blog, have a look!


Tandem style

Tandem Biking

Amsterdam is one of the most diverse bicycle cities in the world. Bikes of all shapes and sizes wind through the canals and cobblestoned streets each day. A rarity in this jungle of spokes and tyres is the Tandem bicycle, it’s always special seeing one. I mean who wouldn’t want double the pedal-power getting to your destination? Never leave your partner behind at that crossing again!

By Mel.


Cyclist of the month… bicycle designer Elian

His great grandfather had a bicycle shop, where his grandmother spoked wheels in the cold Dutch winters and his father ran around as a little boy. At the age of 3 Elian learned how to cycle, when 15 years old he started to work in a bike shop and now he has designed the ultimate city bike, the Minute. In short; Elian’s life is all about bicycles!Elian Veltman

The ultimate city bike
Elian is a bike designer. He makes handcrafted bicycles; “the process of designing a bike starts with a blank paper, I talk to the customer, what does he/she want, what is their ideal cycling position, where and how will they use the bike, I take their measurements and then I start.The result is the perfect bike for that person.”
Minute bike
While designing these bikes, Elian realized many people were looking for a bike that would solve the typical urban biking problems many people face: “It should be a bike that they could leave in their apartment (not to get stolen on the street). Not too heavy, not too big, easy maneuverable in the busy city centre’s of Amsterdam and Utrecht and easy to park in the full bike parking’s. Also most people want to sit upright, cycle comfortably and they want to be able to carry groceries and kids on their bikes. When I kept hearing those same requests for a bike, I decided to design the Ultimate City Bike. And we just launched it: the Minute.”

Minute Introduction from Minute Cycles on Vimeo.

Minute city bikeGreat grandfather’s bike shop
Elian’s great grandfather had a bike shop in Maarn (close to Utrecht). Elian’s father still remembers being there as a little boy: “His grandfather was a typical bike repairman. He always wore a blue overall, his hands were black of all the repair work and he was always smoking. He still remembers the smell of his workplace.” In the village of Maarn almost everyone had a Fongers bicycle. “The winters were much harsher then, so in winter people couldn’t cycle because of all the snow, in these winters there were no repairs to do. In those months my great grandparents and grandparents had another task: spoking wheels for Fongers. That is how it went in those days.”

Opa Vreekamp voor Fietsenwinkel

Elian’s great grandfather in front of the bike shop

Links eerst etalage van Opa vreekamp, met soltaat en kind
Family support
Elian lives in Leersum, a village in the green Utrechtse Heuvelrug. His workplace is in the shed of his parents in Maurik. Every morning he cycles to work through the forest and the fields. He has a little son for whom he built a walking bike. “I get a lot of support from my family; my wife moved mountains to get the Minute launched, my 16 year old brother helps building bikes, and my father brings technical knowledge – which often comes in handy.” Even Elian’s grandmother offered help: “Let me know when I can help, I can still spoke wheels like in the old days!”
Elian cargo bike

MINUTE CYCLES FILM – IBM Contest: People 4 Smarter Cities #ps4c from JAN (JustAnotherNerd) on Vimeo.


Cyclist of the month… singer songwriter Andy

Andy knows what it is to follow your heart. She used to be an investment banker for one of the Netherlands’ biggest banks, but she stopped that promising career to follow her heart and she became a musician. Andy is a happy, positive, 30 year old Dutch singer songwriter. She sings about love, love in relationships but also love for a city. And Andy… she is in love with Amsterdam.

Andy by Aude de Prelle

Andy loves Amsterdam
Nine years ago Andy moved to Amsterdam and she fell in love with the city. “Amsterdam is beautiful, the atmosphere is good and there are so many different people. The fact that there are more bikes than people makes the city even cooler. Everyone cycles! Cycling makes people more social then when everyone sits in their own car. I also love the trams in the city. Sometimes I just hop into a tram and let it take me to its final destination. In those 9 years I got to know all the tram routes!”

City Love
‘City love’ is the name of the record Andy is working on. She is in the middle of a crowdfunding campaign to finance it. With as little as 10 euros people can fund it: “Crowdfunding the money to release my second record is a logical choice for me. Music is social. It is my way to communicate. I make music for people. To move them, to inspire them, or to make them happy. So if I make music for ‘the crowd’ why not involve them in the process of producing my record?” The campaign is going well. In only two weeks Andy funded nearly 60% of her project. The record ‘City love’ is about Andy’s love for Amsterdam and about love between people. “Love is nice, it is horrible, it is disastrous… sometimes love makes you act like a complete idiot. That is what makes love fascinating.”
andy by aude
Racing bike
Andy is not only in love with her city, but also with her bike. She bought her racing bike 6 years ago on Marktplaats (the Dutch eBay). “I bought it because I wanted to see if I liked to go racing. But the bike wasn’t good enough for long cycles so I kept it as a city bike. I have many bikes that got stolen in Amsterdam so I am very careful with this one. I used to carry it up three stairs to my apartment, so that I didn’t have to leave it on the street. Luckily I now have a shared garden with a little storage box where I can put it.”

andy by aude

Look at Andy: No side wheels!
Andy has one very clear memory of when she was 4 and learned to cycle. “It was the last day I would cycle with side wheels. I knew that this would be a ‘Kodak’ moment, so that morning I put on my best dress and cycled with a big smile, and my cute little pink basket to my father taking the picture.”

andy by aude

(Cycling) style
Like most Dutch Andy doesn’t have a ‘cycling’ style, she just cycles with what she is wearing that day. Almost always Andy wears All Stars: “I wear All Stars since I was 9 years old and they really became part of my identity. I wouldn’t go on stage without my All Stars. People would just be so surprised to see me wearing something else.” We also loved Andy’s ring: “That ring used to be my grandma’s. That makes it extra special. My grandma was a tiny lady. She was always very sweet, friendly and quiet. But she was a tough cookie: she had 9 kids and a bakery and her husband passed away quite young. So she worked incredibly hard! Also she was a talented violin player. When I look at the ring I think about the hard work she did and that she didn’t have a chance to make music her life. I then feel so lucky that I do have the chance. That is why I decided to go for it. To follow my heart…”

andy by aude

  • Want to help Andy to make her dream come true? Fund her crowdfunding campaign!
  • Andy is planning a world tour. Do you know a nice venue where she could play? Email her!  andy@sidewalkconcert.com

Photos: Aude; Text: Joni


Thank you Momentum Magazine!

Thank you Momentum Magazine!

Since December passed us by so quickly we are just now getting to share some big news. US-based urban cycling mag, Momentum Magazine, featured our very own Amsterdam Cycle Chic girls in their December issue. Joni and I wrote a brief article with tips about the best cycling city in the world, including a few pointers on “how to cycle like an Amsterdammer”. In the 2-page spread they also featured photos by us — and Aude’s shot of me for last year’s Cyclist of the Month was chosen for the cover! You can still download the December issue here.

We love opportunities like this. Sharing Amsterdam’s unique and amazing  — and all so normal at the same time — bike ‘culture’ with the world is one reason this blog exists. So keep on cycling chic, Amsterdam!

Thank you Momentum Magazine!


Amsterdam architecture bike tour

Amsterdamse School

Our friends from Cycling with… have made yet another cool video in Amsterdam. This time they want for a cycle with art hirstorian Max Put. In the video you see beautiful examples of the famous ‘Amsterdam School‘ architecture. Max tells you all about this group of young architects and how they wanted to challenge the status quo of more traditional architecture with their new vision on the combination of functionality and style. They wanted to make ‘architecture art again’.

So watch this video! It really makes you feel like you’re on a bike in Amsterdam, while learning a lot about this interesting and revolutionary architecture.

Cycling with Max from Paddy Cahill on Vimeo.

Cycling with…
Cycling with… is a blog that focuses on the social side of cycling. Paddy and Philip interview people while cycling around in their city. In the interviews a broad range of topics is covered. Want to know more and see what kind of cool filming technique they use? Check out their cycling blog!


A Jack Russell in our mailbox

Hi Amsterdam Cycle Chic team,
I never had a driving license and I have never missed it because my bike brings me everywhere! Cycling is freedom.What is nicer than discovering the city by bike? I cycle a Bub by Batavus now but years ago I had a real old omafiets, and… a very sweet Jack Russell puppy. Maybe a nice picture for your blog?
Best regards,
Louise

Dog in bike basket

We love it to receive an email like this. People sharing their bicycle stories with us. In that way we get to know our readers a bit. So thanks for sharing Louise!

After seeing Louise’s picture I went through our own photos and selected a few dogs in baskets (or crates) for you, something you see a lot in the streets of Amsterdam. And you see, big dogs, small dogs, they all love to go for a ride!

Waiting to go for a cycle

Amsterdam cycling

by Meredith Just chillin'


Office views

I am lucky that the social enterprise JO Cadeau that I founded has its headquarters (and to be honest, only quarters) in this amazing building by Dutch architect Aldo van Eyck. It is an anti-squat arrangement; you pay very little and rent a space in a building that would otherwise be empty or occupied by squatters. It is great. It is in the city centre, in the old Jewish neighbourhood. The only disadvantage is that you can suddenly be ‘kicked out’ when the building is sold.

I want to show you some essential parts of my days at the office, the view at the Hollandsche Schouwburg, the building and my great businesspartner Josje.

Plantage Middenlaan

My office

Plantage Middenlaan

My view

Lady on bike Amsterdam

My businesspartner

For lunch I love to go out to get some bread and nice Dutch cheeses that we eat all together (interns, freelancers and ourselves) in our office. When outside, I look at the cyclists. It is a diverse scenery at the Plantage Middenlaan. Check it out:

Cycle Chic

Amsterdam Cycle Chic

Amsterdam Cycle Chic

Amsterdam tourist cycling

Amsterdam cycling

Bakfiets

by Joni


Double Dutch

When it comes to cycling the Dutch love to double up. Especially on chilly, wintery days like today, it seems like the only way to get around is to jump on the back on your friend’s bike and snuggle up close.  Or hop on a tandem like the adorable cutie-pie in the last pic! Don’t lose those flowers!

Double Dutch
Double Dutch
Double Dutch
Double Dutch
Double Dutch


Win the book ‘In the city of bikes’

Pete Jordan, our cyclist of the month, wrote the book ‘In the city of bikes‘ about the cycling history of Amsterdam. You can read more about the book in Meredith’s interview with the author.

Now Pete gave Amsterdam Cycle Chic a signed copy of the book that we can give away!

How do you win? Send us by mail, post on our Facebook page or in our Flickr group a picture of your own ‘history of cycling’. So for example a picture of yourself as a baby on the back of your dads bike, your mother in a hippy dress on a Dutch bike or a picture of your home town full of cyclists a few decades ago.

The picture of Aude’s husband Willem that she posted a few weeks ago is the perfect example.  Join the competition and win!

Cycling in the 80's
Fietsrepubliek


Omafiets

Amsterdam Cycle Chic

Anyone up for short Dutch lesson? I already told you at the time what was an “Opa“. Now let’s talk about the “Oma”: it is the grandma. You may think I love old people, and I do. But I am not the one who invented the expression “Omafiets”. “Fiets” means bike in Dutch so “Omafiets” is a grandma bike. And trust me the Omafiets is the fancy old classic that most of people in Amsterdam are riding on.

Amsterdam Cycle chic

by Aude


Cyclist of the month : Massy, the ice cream delivery man

Born in Afganistan in the 80’s, Massy and his family moved to the Netherlands more than 20 years ago. As a child he discovered the Dutch culture, he learned to cycle straight away and felt in love with this way of moving around. He likes the feeling of being independent on his bike, to be free to go everywhere and to breathe the fresh air.. He never went back to Afghanistan but he is pretty sure the bicycle is not as popular as it is here !
Amsterdam cycle chic
Massy is living in Utrecht. A few months ago, a friend inspired him to start a new business. His friend was selling ice creams on his delivery bike.

He couldn’t stop thinking this idea was very good and would be much appreciated by all the Amsterdammers !
So he just started with one of his mates a new company on wheels : bikeexpress.nl (site still under construction)
Amsterdam cycle chic
They have 2 ice cream delivery bikes, one is mostly cycling in Amsterdam North, while the other one goes around Amsterdam East. They offer our most beloved flavors : vanilla (in pole position !) strawberry and chocolate, or pistache, or lemon, etc
Amsterdam cycle chic
Massy loves selling ice creams. The reason is very simple: he is happy to make people smile. It is related to what makes him happy in life : « to help people in every way I can help ». He is already doing so since a long time as he has worked many years for Amnesty International and other NGOs. He also initiated this nice project ofoundation.nl. Massy’s dream is « to have a positive influence in the development of the human kind ».

Amsterdam cycle chic

Reportage by Aude

I was happy to meet Massy and to taste his delicious ice creams while enjoying the Oosterpark with my little baby.

Let’s see what he will offer us in the winter : broodjes, soup ?


Business delivery

Amsterdam cycle chic

by Aude

I just loved these blues-brother-like guys, appearing on the borders of the Amstel river. It made me wonder, though: are they just colleagues on their way to have a drink or is this a smart dressed entrepreneur, taking his client out for lunch to one of the nicer restaurants on the borders of the Amstel. In any case, you must have a good deal of self-confidence to sit on the front seat of a bike like this, because a clumsy fall of the bike in front of a fully occupied terrace does not really match with this cool image!


Amsterdammers taking it easy

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.

Crossing the bridge

The Amstel river was full of boats. Not only on Queensday Amsterdammers love to go dancing and drinking on their boats. Also Liberation Day is a busy day for the river. Every year there is a concert on the river. King Willem-Alexander, Queen Máxima and former Queen Beatrix came to listen and many Amsterdammers joined them on their boats. Now rest has returned, this guy only saw one sightseeing boat when he crossed the famous skinny bridge.

Sunny cycling in the Vondelpark

On Queensday the Vondelpark is full of family fun. The park is turned into a big freemarket place. There are many activities for kids like face-painting, games and musical and theatrical performances. But also in the most famous park of Amsterdam, rest has returned. This guy is enjoying an easy cycle through the park.


How Cycle Chic is the new king?

As you probably have heard; we have a new king! On Tuesday the ceremony of the abdication and the coronation (without a crown though) took place in Amsterdam. Prince Willem-Alexander (also known as ‘Prins Pils = Prince Pilsener’) is now king Willem-Alexander and his Argentinian born wife, Máxima, is Queen Máxima.

For Amsterdam Cycle Chic the first question that arose was of course; how cycle chic are the new king and queen? As a royal couple you usually are very chic, but do they also cycle chic? We found the following pictures of the King and Queen on bikes. What do you think? Quite cycle chic eh?!

King of the Netherlands on a bike

The king of the Netherlands cycling in a suit

Family cycling; Willem-Alexander, Maxima and their three daughters on bikes

Dutch Royal family on bikes

Willem Alexander op een bakfiets

Royal family cycling with a cargo bike

Prinses Maxima op de fiets

Queen Máxima on a bike

Willem Alexander en Maxima op de fiets

The Dutch king and queen on their bikes

the young prince Willem Alexander

King Willem-Alexander as a boy


I can’t get enough of you Amsterdam!

I can't get enough of you Amsterdam!
I can't get enough of you Amsterdam!
I can't get enough of you Amsterdam!What a weekend it’s been. The sun is shining, people are happy and out on their bikes all the day long. This is the time of year when I just can’t get enough of this city. And Queen’s Day has yet to come! Let’s hope this wonderful weather keeps up for Tuesday.

by Meredith


Ten minutes in an Amsterdam window

Let me invite you to Amsterdam, to have a look out of my window. Every minute at least one chic cyclist is passing by. Having a Cycle Chic blog in Amsterdam is therefore not too difficult, almost any cyclist is a chic cyclist.

Please enjoy, ten minutes hanging out of an Amsterdam window:

1st minute: Father cycling with baby
Amsterdam Cycle Chic

2nd minute: Cool cap
Dutch bike with front carrier

3rd minute: Checking out the neighbours
Amsterdam Cycle Chic

4th minute: No hands!
Amsterdam cycling

5th minute: Doubling
Together on a bike

6th minute: Smoking a cigarette
Smoking in Amsterdam
7th minute: Taking your bike for a walk
Amsterdam Cycle Chic

8th minute: Cargo bike and cargo bike
Family cycling - Amsterdam

9th minute: Too cool for school
Children cycling

10th minute: Strong sun
Amsterdam Cycle Chic

Hope you enjoyed your ten minutes in Amsterdam. Don’t you love the cyclists, the sun and the cyclists’ shadows on the pavement? Please come again soon!


Senior Cycle Chic

In Amsterdam people of all ages cycle. Last week we saw ladies with their babies on bikes, we have seen young kids cycling and trendy students. This week we show you chic cyclists with grey hair. Aren’t they stylish and fit? I guess cycling keeps you young!

Amsterdam Cycle Chic

Cycle Chic in Amsterdam

Amsterdam Cycle Chic

Amsterdam Cycle Chic


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