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What to wear

I used to be fashionable. Despite needing bigger shoes and wider, longer clothes than ever went on sale at Nordstrom, I used to be a sharp-dressed woman. In the periods when I managed to diet myself into the normal size ranges, I was killer. Take my word for it.

But a job not requiring dress-up, and passing the age-45 mark, and losing what little ability I ever had to diet myself into the normal size ranges have all conspired to reduce me to black pants and a selection of jackets, and the removal of full-length mirrors from my house.

One of the coolest things about riding Clyde has been that I've taken an interest in my wardrobe for the first time in YEARS. Riding around town on an upright, comfortable bike is not only something a gal can do in fun clothes: it makes a gal feel like she deserves them again!



Perfectly serviceable cycling outfit that I wore in the rain last night:
Cycle Chic 2

Narrow-leg trousers stay out of the chain (as do many kinds of skirts--and there are skirt-guards you can get to cover the spokes and hub). A scarf works well to bind wider pant-legs to the ankle, and is way prettier than some bilious velcro strip.

Fugly yellow safety gear is not the only way of improving your visibility--light colors work quite well. I've resurrected an old ash-colored Ralph Lauren raincoat that's fabulous. (So I have to wear it unbuttoned...I'm hunting for a replacement in my real size.)

There is NO COMPELLING REASON to wear athletic shoes--or even comfortable shoes--on a flat-pedal bike. High heels work as well as flats, and hard leather works as well as rubber.

It's no colder on a bike than it is being outdoors for other reasons--and cycling warms you up fast--so I can wear pretty much what I'd wear to stand and wait for a bus. Fingers and toes need a little extra protection, is all.

It IS wetter, though--no umbrella, more exposure. But that doesn't mean I Must Be Waterproof. I'm only going four miles, and polyester is my friend. Quick-dry trousers and a raincoat work great, and if my scarf and gloves get wet, well, my computer monitors at work make great little drying racks.



Next up: helmets, lights and reflectors: trying to make safety attractive.

Comments

cookiemom6067
Jan. 3rd, 2010 12:19 am (UTC)
Those are some seriously cute clothes.

Wish I still worked locally - I gave some thought to bike commuting but various (lazy) reasons got in the way.
emeraldsedai
Jan. 3rd, 2010 03:31 am (UTC)
No question about it: my situation is ideal, and I'm lucky with my four-mile commute. I've always lived close to the city center because I didn't even own a car till I was 35, and I'm getting ready to get rid of the one I've got now.

Still, cycling is a great way to run small errands and get a little weekend huffing and puffing in. I'm loving it for both purposes.

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