Christmas gifts for discerning cyclists

VecchioJo presents his list of presents for cyclists who are difficult to buy for

by VecchioJo   November 23, 2012  

Lois May-Miller 1

We've already given you suggestions for Christmas gifts for performance minded cyclists, gifts for female cyclists, and a quick rundown of books for cyclists. Now it's time for VecchioJo to pitch in with his ideas for presents that are suitable for discerning cyclists... you know, cyclists who appreciate the finer things in life. We've really taken the hard work out of this for you, huh? We've done pretty much everything short of actually nipping down the shops and buying the presents for you. On you go, VecchioJo...


Col Kilometre Marker £11.49

I’m not sure if these should be presented as a reward for doing the climb or a kick-up-the-arse incentive to lay off that second helping of pudding in preparation for doing it next year. Whatever. Cycling Souvenirs have these little models to collect of the kilometre markers you gasp past when ascending cols. There’s a whole range of Alpine and Pyrenean climbs to choose from so your favourite nemesis should be in there. They’re handmade and painted in the shadow of Mount Ventoux for authenticity.



Some “Claud & I” art £1.90 - £36

Lois May-Miller is a graphic designer/illustrator from Brighton (where else?) whose recent conversion to cycling you can read all about on her blog. She has channeled her love affair via her scribbling skills into a collection of bikey prints and stickers. A ‘Love & Bicycles’ print with a ‘My other ride is a bike’ car sticker slipped in the stocking, please.


Made In England book £35.00

More than just something to flick through when the EastEnders omnibus is on, Made In England is a beautiful book about the current state of bespoke steel frame building in this country. Concentrating on a dozen UK framebuilders, both old and new, the book is beautifully and extensively illustrated with photographs of their workshops and craft, while there are just enough words to make it both interesting and amusing without getting boring. If you don’t get it as a present, buy it with the book tokens that aged aunt always gets you.


Morvelo Gruppetto T-shirt £21.99

The south coast’s favourite cycling apparel supplier has just launched a new collection of riding and relaxing clobber in time for the winter season. Whilst not necessarily ideal for cracking off hundreds of chilly off-season base miles, this Gruppetto t-shirt is perfect for the inevitable pub-based celebrations.


Sidi Wire shoes £375

I saw these at Eurobike and may have done a little not-very-masculine dance. I’ve worn Sidis since I first strapped a ‘proper’ pair of cycling shoes to my feet over half a lifetime ago; they just fit me, perfectly. Every other shoe I’ve tried has been nice but returning to the Sidis is like having my feet licked by Italian virgins, so you can imagine my excitement when Sidi announced their new Wire shoes. Using bits of tensioning wire in shoes is nothing new for Sidi, they’ve been doing it as long as I can remember. Everyone else has only just caught up. They might look pricey but if you’re having to buy The Other Half some Jimmy Choos for Christmas then these are going to be a bloody bargain, and worn more.

Pâtisserie Cyclisme Coffee Hopper Blend Coffee £5.00

Pâtisserie Cyclisme is a web-based resource for that cycling essential, the mid-ride tea stop, with over 150 user submitted reviews of caffs and hostelries from all over the UK and Europe. To kick you out the door and pedal to one of those caffs you’ll probably need a coffee. Pâtisserie Cyclisme can help here too with their Coffee Hopper Blend, which is dark, chocolaty, and with a “get on that bike” punch.

(iL) Soigneur Espresso Cup and Saucer £10.00

You’re going to need something to put that coffee in though, and this’ll do nicely. The core of (iL) Soigneur is their nice line of very fashionable musettes, if that’s you bag (nice! – Ed). They also do this rather sweet espresso cup and saucer. It’s an authentic thick-walled Italian espresso cup that, if you’re doing it correctly, you’ll warm before your espresso is served. The (iL) Soigneur “for Cycling and Life” motif adorns the side. Amen.

Cinelli Milano Bar End Plugs £4.99

I’m not sure when it happened but all the bar-end plugs you get with your handlebar tape these days seem to be black. Anyone with half an idea of What Is Right knows this is Wrong. Thankfully Cinelli come to the rescue with their Milano aluminium bar-end plugs anodized in the Correct silver, and a range of other hues to co-ordinate your bike.

Vulpine Tailored Trousers £120.00

Continuing their mission to make cycling clothes that are comfortable and technical enough to ride a bike in but are styled so you don’t look dorky once you get off the saddle, Vulpine have just released their Tailored Trouser. Made from water-resistant stretch fabric, they’re bulging with the usual Vulpine obsessive attention to detail, like Scotchlite reflective tapes running up the insides of both legs for turn-up safety with a right leg that can be buttoned tight to save chain chewage. You had me at turn-ups.


A Proper Summer Priceless

Not just one or two sunny days but a glorious sweeping wave of hot. The kind where only used abroad iridium lenses can confidently be swapped into the glasses and you don’t have to think about packing another layer in the back pocket, just in case. Where a tan turns deeply stewed tea and sharp edged enough to cut cheese, sweat runs heavy into eyes, glistens on forearms and crusts racehorse thick on clothing, or drops like sizzling fat onto melting tarmac. That kind of summer.


Rapha Hi-Vis Gilet £100.00

Just because you want to be visible on your bike it doesn’t mean that you have to look like a navvy with your jerkin flapping gaily in the breeze. Wind and waterproof enough for training rides, bright enough for city riding. And not that grubby yellow.


Chris King Pretty And Strong water bottle £5.99

Okay, so it’s just a water-bottle, but it’s a nice one; 28-ounces big (that’s US fluid ounces, about 830ml) with a usefully wide mouth to scoop energy goop or drop some ice cubes in. It’s also big enough to pop some pink Pretty And Strong Ahead spacers in there to make the gift a little more special, and a pink Ahead cap, and then maybe, if you really loved them, a pink Chris King headset. And a coffee-tamper. A percentage of each Pretty And Strong sale goes to the “Susan G. Komen for the Cure” campaign, a global fight against breast cancer, because cycling kind of needs a cancer charity to believe in right now. So not really just a water-bottle after all.

24 user comments

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Thanks for including us. Even happier you've got Patisserie Cyclisme in there! Hurrah for Lou!

aslongasicycle's picture

posted by aslongasicycle [365 posts]
23rd November 2012 - 17:34


First thing I though when I saw those bar plugs was 'Nespresso'...

Simon_MacMichael's picture

posted by Simon_MacMichael [9389 posts]
23rd November 2012 - 17:53


I love that Grupetto T-shirt! My grandad used to have lots of those little cyclist figures and let me play with them (carefully!) as a bairn.

Sadly, the only person who would think of buying me one of these is, well, me.

Ghedebrav's picture

posted by Ghedebrav [1132 posts]
23rd November 2012 - 18:40


posted by apsykes [4 posts]
23rd November 2012 - 19:07


How could you leave the Rapha Chris King Coffee Tamper from this list?

posted by Nick T [902 posts]
23rd November 2012 - 20:01


Simon_MacMichael wrote:
First thing I though when I saw those bar plugs was 'Nespresso'...

i thought exactly the same might have to get some Tongue

posted by titch75 [14 posts]
23rd November 2012 - 21:18


I know its been out a while but iv just finised Rob Penn Its all about the Bike is a great read. Big Grin

posted by Chris Deacon [145 posts]
23rd November 2012 - 21:37


Top marks for proper use of the word 'Correct'.

The International Ned Boulting Fan Club, @INBFC

INBFC's picture

posted by INBFC [11 posts]
23rd November 2012 - 23:56


Me too. Especially as they follow the coffee and espresso cup on the page.

posted by Campag_10 [153 posts]
24th November 2012 - 3:19


Loved this line about the Sidis:

"Every other shoe I’ve tried has been nice but returning to the Sidis is like having my feet licked by Italian virgins"

posted by Abdoujaparov [24 posts]
24th November 2012 - 8:22


Eeh, I remember when all this were Campag corkscrew and Park pizza wheel.

Bez's picture

posted by Bez [524 posts]
24th November 2012 - 9:35


Bez, genius. You just nailed it.

aslongasicycle's picture

posted by aslongasicycle [365 posts]
24th November 2012 - 11:03


What a cavalcade of useless, overpriced trinkets. Still, better than the previous usual "gifts for discerning cyclists" bought by non-cyclists, which in my experience were Lance Armstrong books and DVDs. My nearest landfill site has a corner reserved just for those.

posted by handlebarcam [545 posts]
24th November 2012 - 12:49


I've always found coffee quite useful for waking up and tasting nice.
Art seems really good for sparking the imagination and emotions.
Trousers are useful for not going to prison.
Similarly, T-shirts cover your nipples.
Pretty black and white books of talented people are inspiring.
And coloured handlebar plus are really useful for...Umm, er, plugging your, um, handlebars...


aslongasicycle's picture

posted by aslongasicycle [365 posts]
24th November 2012 - 13:15


handlebarcam wrote:
What a cavalcade of useless, overpriced trinkets. Still, better than the previous usual "gifts for discerning cyclists" bought by non-cyclists, which in my experience were Lance Armstrong books and DVDs. My nearest landfill site has a corner reserved just for those.

from what i've read of your comments on here hbc, you're not 'target demographic'

Big Grin

Barry Fry-up's picture

posted by Barry Fry-up [193 posts]
24th November 2012 - 13:52


Please don't have a pop at handlebarcam. He's hilarious. He makes me realise how brilliant my life is.

Can you imagine rocking up somewhere and saying, "This is rubbish, but not as rubbish as some other stuff that isn't here"? It can't be easy.

posted by Mat Brett [2180 posts]
24th November 2012 - 14:21


you missed a beauty from il soignier! I NEED this in my life! the pink/world champ colour. stunning! no idea when or how i would use it but i would find something

posted by russyparkin [578 posts]
24th November 2012 - 21:48


Harris tweed. Nice. And a totally random pic of Steve Zisou in the sideshow.

Noli porcum linguere

captain_slog's picture

posted by captain_slog [307 posts]
25th November 2012 - 9:20


The cinelli plugs are actually metallised plastic. They are veh cool though..

posted by localsurfer [187 posts]
25th November 2012 - 12:01


Love the Morvelo T shirt, i've one of their Woodstock tee's and it's one of the few cycling t-shirts that has a bit of design flair about it compared to many which just have some cyclist or cycling gear slapped on it - plain lazy design if you ask me.
One thing on my list though is "Velo" by Paul Fournel, got some brilliant illustrations by Jo Burt which would be the real reason why i want it, though i'm sure Paul's writing is worthy - it's the artwork that steals the show. I'm lucky enough to have commissioned a piece of Jo's work a couple of years ago and it's a prized possession. One of those things you'd save first if your house was burning down.

posted by PRINCIPIA PHIL [59 posts]
25th November 2012 - 20:41


handlebarcam wrote:
What a cavalcade of useless, overpriced trinkets. Still, better than the previous usual "gifts for discerning cyclists" bought by non-cyclists, which in my experience were Lance Armstrong books and DVDs. My nearest landfill site has a corner reserved just for those.

Bah, humbug!

posted by pwake [364 posts]
28th November 2012 - 20:55


Whatever present you give, wrapping it in Edinburgh Bicycle Co-op's Xmas Paper should raise a smile Smile
At 60p a sheet, it's easily the least expensive item on this thread.

posted by Hibee Biker [2 posts]
29th November 2012 - 16:23


How about a shout out for a new simple but practical product to keep your £500 smartphone safe but usable when in your jersey pocket - the pOcpac. A perfect stocking filler at £6.99 but you can but few for your mates with our Xmas bundle offer - three for £15.

thepocpac's picture

posted by thepocpac [12 posts]
30th November 2012 - 9:49


handlebarcam wrote:
My nearest landfill site has a corner reserved just for those.

Where is it? I need that for the woolly fleece saddle cover and pug-ugly (and heavy) picture frame surrounded by a recycled bike chain that my nearest and dearest deemed worthy gifts in past Christmases.

posted by arowland [122 posts]
30th November 2012 - 16:32