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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Savannah, GA
    Posts
    3

    Designing Women's Cycling Apparel

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    Hello!

    I am currently working on my final Master's of design project that is to design women-specific cycling clothing. Last summer I bought a road bike and have been riding it non-stop. One of the issues I have encountered is that it is difficult to find cycling clothing that I love to wear (especially in stores!).

    Currently I am conducting a lot of research to look for user insights. This past weekend I went to the South Carolina state championships and collected some good ideas. I will hopefully be in Athens, GA for the crit this coming weekend.

    Some questions I am posing:

    Is there a product that you wish existed for women who cycle?

    What specific changes could be made to existing products?

    What is your favorite brand and why?

    What is the piece of cycling clothing that makes you feel the best and why?

    Any other suggestions are welcome!

    If you would like further information on my project, just ask or feel free to email me. kelseyamarks@gmail.com

    Thank you!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    45
    Center back pocket with a zipper.

    cycling dress/ long jersey style with pockets... the Terry dress has no pockets.

    summer long sleeve jerseys, for sun protection in pretty prints.

    relaxed fit without elastic in the sleeves and bottom hem


    Favorite jersey long sleeve summer weight jersey by Sheebest no longer for sale. The fabric has a better feel than the Canari summer weight jersey.

    Next favorite Terry relaxed style
    Last edited by sah; 04-20-2010 at 09:30 AM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    WA State
    Posts
    4,364
    You'll find a lot of widely varying opinions here....

    I'm pretty much totally opposite your first poster.

    My fav is Canari - mainly because few other mfg's make stuff that fits me right.

    Jerseys - I prefer race cut (close fitting) with good gripper elastic at the waist and sleeves (I want my arm warmers to stay put!). I love Canari's long sleeve winter weight jerseys - they are very close fitting, on the outside the fabric is very smooth, on the inside they are slightly fleecy. Jerseys must have easily accessed pockets - at least 2 preferably 3 - no zippers for me thanks.

    Shorts - good leg grippers (again I want my leg warmers to stay put) - no low cut waist!! I don't want to show belly button when I stand up thanks. Medium length - I think I like a 7 or 8 inch inseam. Too long and they come way down almost to my knees to short the end of the leg might rub the saddle.

    Designs - at this point I only wear team kit, but before I had preference for jerseys with random/abstract patterns. I don't care for solids at all.

    I don't think there really is much out there for guys that isn't made for women.... the only seemingly deficient area is maybe bib shorts? I've never really worn them because our team orders always seem to be men's sizing for bibs and I'm just too small to even try them.
    Last edited by Eden; 04-20-2010 at 09:56 AM.
    "Sharing the road means getting along, not getting ahead" - 1994 Washington State Driver's Guide

    visit my flickr stream http://flic.kr/ps/MMu5N

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    2,704
    How about jerseys that come in different "bust cuts" (for lack of a better term)? I need a small to properly fit my shoulders, but a medium to fit my bust. I would love to find a cycling jersey that fits all of me, not just one part or another!

    I like half gripper elastic in the hem, like some of my Pearl Izumi jerseys have. For me, full elastic rides up all the time, and no elastic rides up and twists when the pockets are full.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
    Posts
    6,984
    Quote Originally Posted by sah View Post
    cycling dress/ long jersey style with pockets... the Terry dress has no pockets.

    summer long sleeve jerseys, for sun protection in pretty prints.

    relaxed fit without elastic in the sleeves and bottom hem
    +1 More selection styles in cycling dress with skort piece or shorts underneath. And style selection that includes short-sleeves, not just sleeveless. Being in the Northwest Pacific Coast, it never gets so hot in summer that sleeveless dresses is critical compared to other regions in Canada/U.S.

    I need the pocket (with a zipper) to put in my key & security card s since I cycle down into underground parking garages where bikes are locked up.

    I actually have never understood the main reason to have fitted elastic at bottom hem on cycling jersey. To prevent blowing around in wind/improve aerodynamic properties?? Usually alot of cycling shorts/long tights aren't too low rise for draftiness. The elasticized cycling jersey hem flatters VERY few people. Instead it emphasizes tummies on men and women.

    I also agree to Eden's cycling shorts with no need to show belly button /or have low-rise shorts. And this is coming from myself, who is already slim so it's not about how I look to "cover up" my tummy.

    Unlike some, I wear my cycling jerseys (long & short-sleeved) abit looser, not entirely fitted. I like cycling jerseys with A-line side cut for abit of shape at least. The reason why I don't like them tight against me (even though I'm 97 lbs.):

    a) In case I wear a bra that's too thin, my boob headlights won't show too much in coolness.

    b) After eating a nice meal after getting to place by bike, my stomach expands.

    c) I feel WAY HOTTER in tight tops in summer heat especially temp. over 80 degrees F. For 85-90 F, just forget it. I hate tight tops when cycling / hiking/walking around in high temp.

    d) I don't wear sleeveless tops when I cycle...I'm out in the sun for hours during cycling season. I never have. I would like to protect my skin on upper abdomen. I already had a false skin melanoma scare related to my face.

    Yes, I am not typical, especially on d) but now into my 18th yr. of regular cycling I am SO GLAD I don't wear sleeveless cycling wear. Now I see women my age, the skin around their upper body, affected greatly by sun....
    My Personal blog on cycling & other favourite passions.
    遙知馬力日久見人心 Over a long distance, you learn about the strength of your horse; over a long period of time, you get to know whatís in a personís heart.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    WA State
    Posts
    4,364
    Quote Originally Posted by shootingstar View Post
    I actually have never understood the main reason to have fitted elastic at bottom hem on cycling jersey. To prevent blowing around in wind/improve aerodynamic properties?? Usually alot of cycling shorts/long tights aren't too low rise for draftiness. The elasticized cycling jersey hem flatters VERY few people. Instead it emphasizes tummies on men and women.
    Maybe it is because of my body shape (short torso, narrow waist), but I don't understand why you wouldn't want elastic..... I *hate* a flappy jersey. I want it to be close cut and to stay put - so gripper elastic please!
    "Sharing the road means getting along, not getting ahead" - 1994 Washington State Driver's Guide

    visit my flickr stream http://flic.kr/ps/MMu5N

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Western Canada-prairies, mountain & ocean
    Posts
    6,984
    Quote Originally Posted by Eden View Post
    Maybe it is because of my body shape (short torso, narrow waist), but I don't understand why you wouldn't want elastic..... I *hate* a flappy jersey. I want it to be close cut and to stay put - so gripper elastic please!
    http://forums.teamestrogen.com/showt...ighlight=skort This jersey fit on me in photo, is approximately how I prefer fit of a jersey. A bit looser. It has a bottom elastic hem which I actually don't care for.

    I'm probably not typical --many women of my weight /bone frame, enjoy wearing tight upper body clothing fit for exercise/fitness purposes. I don't. I end up thinking too much about how I look/feel self-conscious instead of focusing /enjoying the bike ride/yoga etc. That is the last thing I want to do while engaging in some sort of exercise.
    Last edited by shootingstar; 04-20-2010 at 11:20 AM.
    My Personal blog on cycling & other favourite passions.
    遙知馬力日久見人心 Over a long distance, you learn about the strength of your horse; over a long period of time, you get to know whatís in a personís heart.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Appling, GA
    Posts
    275
    I don't have much to add on clothing choices. I am a former injured runner who recently took up cycling. Needless to say, I am still trying to figure out cycling clothing.

    But I live in GA and I am so bummed that I can't go to the Twilight Crit. in Athens. I haven't been for years and now that I am cycling again I really want to go.
    Well, I have a good conflict. I will be watching my boys at the Dogwood Regatta in Oak Ridge, TN. My DH and I will be on our Mt bikes following the races on the bike path.

    Hope you get a lot of good tips. I'll be reading and learning along the way.
    http://etherbourn.blogspot.com/

    2010 Cannondale Synapse Feminine Carbon 6

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    WA State
    Posts
    4,364
    Quote Originally Posted by shootingstar View Post
    [url]
    I'm probably not typical --many women of my weight /bone frame, enjoy wearing tight upper body clothing fit for exercise/fitness purposes. I don't. I end up thinking too much about how I look/feel self-conscious instead of focusing /enjoying the bike ride/yoga etc. That is the last thing I want to do while engaging in some sort of exercise.
    I don't like a close fit jersey because I'm vain..... I don't like the feel of the material flapping all around.... remember too that I'm not a casual rider, I race and ride hard. I'm looking for clothing that does its job and stays put without bunching or binding anywhere. Some of the best feeling clothing is certainly not the most flattering..... Skin suits for TT's feel terrific - not particularly flattering even if you do have a decent body...
    "Sharing the road means getting along, not getting ahead" - 1994 Washington State Driver's Guide

    visit my flickr stream http://flic.kr/ps/MMu5N

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Beautiful NW or Left Coast
    Posts
    5,619
    yes, pockets in shorts, skorts, knickers...

    If i decide i want to go for a ride (go to the store for example) if i wear bike shorts, it means i need a bike jersey too or I have no pockets.
    Come on, just little pockets even?

    I'd love to see knickers more designed like old fashioned men's knickers but still with the chamois in them (for under $150.!!)
    I like Bikes - Mimi
    Watercolor Blog

    Davidson Custom Bike - Cavaletta
    Dahon 2009 Sport - Luna
    Old Raleigh Mixte - Mitzi

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    WA State
    Posts
    4,364
    Quote Originally Posted by Biciclista View Post
    If i decide i want to go for a ride (go to the store for example) if i wear bike shorts, it means i need a bike jersey too or I have no pockets.
    Come on, just little pockets even?
    I prefer chamoisless tights (I like to wear tights over shorts rather than dedicated tights), so I usually buy tights made for other sports. I have a really nice pair of Pear Izumi running tights that have a little zippered pocket right about at the tailbone. I've never put anything in it (its big enough to carry some cash, maybe a small phone), but I could and it wouldn't get in the way cycling at all.
    "Sharing the road means getting along, not getting ahead" - 1994 Washington State Driver's Guide

    visit my flickr stream http://flic.kr/ps/MMu5N

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Beautiful NW or Left Coast
    Posts
    5,619
    i don't wear tights when it's warmer, so i'm still stuck with the same problem.
    I like Bikes - Mimi
    Watercolor Blog

    Davidson Custom Bike - Cavaletta
    Dahon 2009 Sport - Luna
    Old Raleigh Mixte - Mitzi

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    WA State
    Posts
    4,364
    Ah, but if the intrepid designer is listening, that type of pocket might be practical (unlike one at the front or on the leg) and handy. A patch pocket on the front might work on knickers, but seems uncomfortable sounding for shorts.
    "Sharing the road means getting along, not getting ahead" - 1994 Washington State Driver's Guide

    visit my flickr stream http://flic.kr/ps/MMu5N

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Savannah, GA
    Posts
    3

    Skorts

    From the people I have talked to it seems like there are two different groups. One group likes pink/purple, and floral cycling clothes, and the other prefers a more streamlined look with color blocks/solids.
    However, both groups want clothing that is formed specifically for a woman's body! (which should not be too much to ask for!)
    Do you think this is accurate?

    What about skorts? Are they very popular? And for what sorts of rides?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    lost in my own thoughts
    Posts
    301
    Pockets. Deep pockets. Jerseys not too tight. I prefer color blocks, solids. I don't ride in skorts. But shants, capris, or what ever you call-em. Hells yes. Try and make stuff that fits "real" women. Sometimes clothing manufacturers cater to such a small segment of the population. Pffft. Sorry. Off my soap-box for now.
    "Things look different from the seat of a bike carrying a sleeping bag with a cold beer tucked inside." ~Jim Malusa
    2009 Trek 520-Brooks B-17 Special in Antique Brown
    2010 Surly Long Haul Trucker-Brooks B-17 Standard in Black
    1983 Fuji Espree Single Speed-Brooks B17 British Racing Green

 

 

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