So, you want to buy a bike-related gift that’s original, maybe even cool? Well, we have put together some ideas of cool bikey stuff, most of it made in the UK by passionate little companies that deserve your custom. These are products that will be understood and appreciated even by those who aren't obsessed with bicycles…
Receiving leather bar tape, handmade in that there London, is cool. Fact. Chuck in a pair of wood and cork bar-end plugs and it’s even cooler. There is something that sets this bar tape apart and that’s the 3M reflective strip running through it which you can see through the perforations that turn your bars into some sort of disco light sabre when car headlights catch them in the dark. Michaux Club do really nice leather shoulder bags with the same reflective trickery.
This is one of those simple devices that when you first see it make you think, “Ooh, that's clever”. It is also simple and that is what makes it a smart idea. If you are partial to the odd bit of bike maintenance, you can service your gears and spin the cranks round or even take off a wheel, front or rear (not both at the same time though). It even packs away small enough to be carried in a small backpack. Perfect for the mobile mechanic or those who are short of space.
If you have a nice/expensive bike and you live in an apartment, you are going to keep it indoors. If your partner doesn't allow it to be kept in the bedroom then how about mounting it on the wall like a painting, so you can sit and stare at it while they watch EastEnders? These minimalist bike hangers even look great when the bike is not attached to them, and they are definitely a talking point.
Everyone receives socks for Christmas, don't they? These are special socks. They make your feet happy when it is really wet outside because they are waterproof. Even when your shoes are like tiny paddling pools, these will keep your little piggies dry. If only they did underpants too.
What better way to carry that new digital camera you got given for publishing images of your gourmet burger to Instagram than with this splendid waterproof pouch? Velcro straps help it attach to your belt or the shoulder strap of your bag. Or you could use it to carry your phone, keys, tools, spare handkerchiefs or whatever.
Forget those gloves that are designed for use with a smartphone, these plastic pouches are brilliant for keeping your mobile safe from the elements while allows you to use your phone… with your massive winter gloves on. Yep, even with your phone held in the sealed bag, you can still use it normally. You get another accessible sleeve for your cash card. Now falling into the canal on your way back from the NYE party won't be so expensive. Available in three different sizes.
You don't have to join the neon army with a bright yellow steward’s jacket, but having something bright and reflective is a good shout for added safety. They come as a pair, one FlipFlip pocket reflector slotting into your back pocket and another one in a front pocket. Simple and reflective.
I can't afford a beautiful custom frame from the very talented Tom Donhou right now so I got one of these superb signed prints. It always makes me smile when I look at it, and I think to myself, “We'll get you a Donhou next year, if you've been good”.
It might not be especially bike related, but if your little someone sports facial furniture beyond the month of Movember then this moustache wax from the very dapper Mr Natty range could liven up Christmas no end. You’ll be able to mimic Poirot's top lip during the inevitable re-runs on the telly, Grandpa Potts off of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.... It probably won't be considered that amusing if you buy it for a lady friend.
Relieve some of the pressure of present finding and get them one of these. They will be well im-presta with this slick belt made out of old inner tubes; normal belts aren't a patch on these. Inflate their ego by telling them how slim they are with it on. If you don't get one for Christmas, she's a let down. These puns never get tyred. Hisssssssss!
Smarten up those pins with the classic chino. These fashionable slim-fitting trousers will complement most leg shapes and they have enough stretch to be really comfortable on a bicycle. They come in varies colours too: black, latte, navy and sky blue.
This year, instead of offering the Brut 33 grooming kit or the latest scent from stinking songstress Britney Spears, how about a box of all the essentials to buff up your bike? Yeah, you can get cheaper wash kits but how about buying the whole shebang? A clean bike is a happy bike.