OMG I have so much bike porn for you! But first, my day of craft. This afternoon was, of course, the Stitch A Ride workshop. It all happened in Fraser Studios, a fantastic space tucked in a laneway behind the Clare, a stone’s throw from UTS and Railway Square. The street also features some awesome graf and a tiny food co-op, and it seems like there would always be something interesting going on there.
It was a motley crew of craft enthusiasts gathered around sewing machines and cutting tables… let loose with scissors and pins and thread. But the Spoke & Spool girls were incredibly helpful, and irrepressibly enthusiastic. The idea was that you brought in old clothes to be deconstructed and then reconstructed into bike-friendly apparel.
A full-skirted dress could be turned into a cool onesie. One lass made riding gloves from a pair of socks. Or, in my case, a $5 pair of old man trousers could be converted into LEDERHOSEN. Yes, they may have been called overalls the last time I wore them (year 7), but today they sound much more exotic. After a few false starts my LEDERHOSEN (sorry to keep shouting with caps, but I love this word) began to take shape. One cut-off leg became the front bib, the other became a pocket. The front piece buttons inside the waistband, and I used reflective strips for the straps – fully removable, they button on and off at the front and back.
The whole thing was just inspiring in the sense that there are young people out there who aren’t driven by consumption, but rather the opposite. Boys and girls making old things into new things, and delighting in the kinds of skills our generation so rarely use – sewing, mending, thrifting…
The Spoke & Spool ladies had thought of everything. There were baked treats and cups of tea, buckets of buttons like nanna used to have, and all manner of goodies to enhance our bikewear: reflective strips for visibility, leather patches to reinforce knees and crotches. I couldn’t resist a hankerchief-sized map of Sydney’s bike paths – super cute to sew into a pocket, and you can even embroider your routes onto it to customise.
The fruits of my labours:
Yes, that’s a pocket big enough for a collection of maps, a modestly sized paperback book, or even a small kitten. Really – pockets should always be sized with pets in mind. The only potential issue here is that LEDERHOSEN have not traditionally featured strongly in my wardrobe. IE, not at all. But who knows? Perhaps looking like a reflective, overgrown Von Trapp child on a bicycle is that indefinable thing my life has been missing thus far?