The world of women's cycling is an exciting place to be at the moment. Never before have professional female cyclists been so prominent in the public eye.
Likewise, women who ride their bikes as part of their daily commute, for fitness or for fun are finally being noticed by cycling retailers. And, in some cases, there are even cycling retailers being created specifically for women - the very best of which being VeloVixen.
VeloVixen is an online retailer for women’s cycling clothes accessories run by husband and wife team Phil and Liz Bingham. And like most brilliant ideas, VeloVixen was created after a "very long bike ride".
In 2009, after just four months of knowing each other, Phil and Liz decided to embark on a 10,300km cycle together: from the southern tip of Argentina up and over the Andes to Lima, and then from Canada down to Mexico.
At the end of their year long journey Phil proposed (and Liz said yes!) and yet there was another proposal on the couple's minds, too: a business proposal.
As Liz explains,
“We had ridden through 100kph winds, altitudes of over 15,000ft and countless thigh-burning climbs. We slept in over 200 different spots. We laughed, cried, sweated and shivered - and in my case, all in 13 items of clothing. One of the biggest challenges was finding those 13 items of clothing."
The lack of cycling clothing and accessories for women astounded the Binghams, and they found that their frustrations with existing cycling retailers weren't unique to them. And so they decided to do something about it, which is precisely why VeloVixen was created.
Riding with Style and Confidence
VeloVixen sell a hand-picked range of clothes and accessories which, they say, "represent the very best and most innovative examples of female cycling clothing" and many of the designs they stock are created by female cyclists, for female cyclists.
Cassandra Cycling Raincoat, Water Off a Duck's Back, £130
Kimono Windbreaker, Cyclodelic, £159
Currently VeloVixen support designers such as Ana Nichoola, Georgia in Dublin, and Water off a Duck's Back with VeloVixen’s own brand range of apparel launching in 2013.
What I love about VeloVixen, aside from their fantastic backstory, is that they're not simply a retailer or online shop. Both Phil and Liz are incredibly passionate about women's cycling, and are advocates and supporters of women who, as they put it, want to "ride safely with confidence and style".
You can also follow @VeloVixenUK on Twitter and find them at Facebook.com/VeloVUK for more information. VeloVixen is currently offering 20% off everything until the end of November - simply use the code November20 at check out!