3.5.12

dreambike

This morning I quickly calculated how much money I have saved on subway fare since I’ve had my bike, and it’s already halfway to paying for itself. Well, that isn’t a totally accurate figure since some days I would have walked, and I have my old bike which was probably not safe to ride without major work, but still! I have been enjoying it. It didn’t have so much as a bell when I got it, so I added a few accessories.


I took this when the hawthorn was blooming in the backyard. Glamour shots! I love the white walls of the tires, even if they are a bit dingy, and the chrome chain guard.


We bought an inexpensive rack, $15 at Canadian Tire, and Geoff affixed this wine crate we had to it. I know this probably looks heavy, but it isn’t that bad and it fits my giant purse and my lunch. It would probably fit a few stray kittens too.


So yeah, it’s been renamed ROAD KITTEN.


I added the bell, as I mentioned here. I got this coffee cup holder at Cycle Couture. It’s come in handy a few times when I haven’t had the time to sit in a coffee shop but was in the mood for a good coffee. Even though the coffee occasionally gets cold by the time I arrive at my destination, or splashes out...

I got this light for the front (no one is surprised that I got one with the word “cat” in the name), and this one to attach to the rear fender. I would like to upgrade the saddle at some point, but I think I have everything I need for now, including a pretty good lock, pump, helmet, and container of oil.

Even though I love my bike, I couldn’t help but keep a mental list of dream bikes when I was looking for one of my own. These are all so super cute (keep in mind that I am not a bike expert. I like these for their aesthetics and have not tested them, although I am sure they are comfortable to ride around a flat city at a moderate pace). They will have to remain in my dreams of paved country roads lined with wildflowers, however.

I like bikes that are smaller in size, and the mixte frame is my favourite. Some of the huge Dutch-style bikes are just too much bike for me, personally, as beautiful as they are.


Click to view large: 1. Abici Primavera in verde (I also like the Sveltina, but I love the green colour, name, brown saddle and grips, and chain guard of the Primavera), 2. Linus Mixte 3 in cream, 3. Bobbin Bicycles Birdie in mint green, and 4. Creme Cycles Caferacer in pearl pink doppio (aahhh!). All these brands but Creme Cycles are available in various bike shops in Toronto, so I have visited the other three and looked at them longingly. I am pretty sure that Linus is the official bike of my neighbourhood.



For those of you in Toronto, here are some shops I like (definitely downtown-biased, but it’s what I know):
Curbside Cycle (Abici, Pashley, Bobbin, Linus, etc.)
Bikes on Wheels (Bobbin, Linus, Norco, Gary Fisher, etc.)
Cycle Couture (Public, Velorbis, etc.)
Repairs & tune-ups: The Bike Joint

If you are looking for a restored vintage bike, Toronto Vintage Bikes does beautiful work.  Or buy an old beater and take a workshop at Bike Pirates!

71 comments:

  1. Pearl pink doppio--ooh! I just had my A.N.T. Bike powdercoated red last year, but now I'm dreaming of a paler hue. Oh well, maybe in 5 years!

    So many Linus bikes here. I love the pashleys, too. Can't wait to start riding again once we switch out my old saddle.

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    1. So pretty, right? Yeah, I wasn't crazy about the fact that my bike was hunter green, but I don't mind. And I know! Soooo many Linus bikes.

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  2. Sweet post! That first picture is lovely. I got a new bike (a Kona hybrid performance bike -- I wanted to upgrade to something faster) from Sweet Pete's this year and it makes me happy. I love the freedom of riding around town. My friend also gave me this detachable basket that doubles as a picnic basket. It gives my bike that feminine touch. I should give my bike a sexy Italian name like Francesco or Rocco.

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    1. Thanks, girl! I'm glad you like your bike. When it's good, it can be the best feeling ever, and that basket sounds awesome.

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  3. Hehe, I love your specification of "paved" country roads...so true. The lovely lanes of my childhood were gravelly, and so dusty!

    You've given me wildflower-biking dreams of my own for the future that I didn't have before. :)

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    1. Ha! Yeah, even my daydreams have to have some realistic elements!

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  4. Its a beautiful bike!
    I love the badge graphic and the name.
    Brilliant!

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    1. Thanks! I really like the crest too.

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  5. i had no idea the world of bikes was this vast (and intimidating)...! i really just need a standard, boring bike that won't fall apart on me, so i'm probably going to go to canadian tire for mine, sigh. but my inner bike-princess definitely wants #4!

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    1. Aw, it should be fun, not intimidating! It's just a matter of determining what purpose you need your bike for and your budget, really. I don't ride that long and fast, and I ride on smooth, flat terrain, so for my purposes, a comfort bike is fine. I imagine that there are some bike people who have very strong opinions on bikes, but I don't, which is probably why so many of the bikes I like are simply beautiful machines with wheels that go forward. There's nothing wrong with CT bikes. I spent my childhood riding a hand-me-down Super Cycle with a banana seat, and I loved that thing.

      The first bike I ever bought was total junk. I had gone into a bike shop (it's closed now) where they had some used bikes, and asked for the cheapest one they had. I got some ancient thing for $100 cash and it was probably the worst bike ever, and probably overpriced, but I couldn't afford another one (I was in my very early 20s). One time I was riding home and someone at a red light said "That is a real heap!" and all I could do was laugh. Someone actually stole it, though! Nuts.

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  6. I absolutely LOVE your bike. I recently bought a little pink schwinn road bike from a thrift store while at my parent's house and have yet to bring it to NYC. I can't wait to get a basket for mine! The little cup holder and lights are a great idea too. I too have a list of dream bikes and I hope someday I can afford to purchase a bike nicer than my 40$ one!

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    1. Thank you! Your bike sounds awesome and what you paid for it makes me want to die a little bit (exaggerating, but holy cow!!).

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  7. Visiting via nat the fat rat and although this is an older post I just had to say sweet ride and I think road kitten is the best name ever! I too have a dream bike. Sea foam green. Imagine that!
    -deirdre

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    1. Hi! Sea foam green sounds pretty dreamy indeed!

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  8. So cute! I have a green Globe Haul and a wine crate that I want to attach to it. How did you fix yours on your bike?

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    1. I wish I could tell you, but it ended up being kind of complicated! Geoff ended up rigging it up to the sides of the rack using a couple of different nuts and bolts as well as zip ties. Lots of drilling & a trip to the hardware store. I think if you have one of those racks with a solid metal part you can just drill the rack and attach it that way? I wish I knew! I never bother trying to figure it out since Geoff likes to do these things.

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  9. Oh wow, I love these types of bikes! They are just so cute.

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  10. She's a beauty! Love the wine crate basket idea. Must be very handy. I don't have a basket on my new bike and really miss having one. You know, for carrying my kittens around =^..^=

    Loulou

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    1. Of course! I can't think of a better use for a basket on one's bike.

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  11. That is one good looking bike! I have a cup holder on my bike too. If I remember to bring my reusable Keep Cup with me when I buy coffee it works perfectly - no spills or splashes!

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    1. Thank you! Oh, that's a good idea. I have a Keep Cup too but I always forget it.

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  12. you would be darling with a basket of kittens at the back! I am so jealous of people riding their bikes this season! I have not been on mine for a long time.

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    1. Totally understandable! I would be a little afraid to ride while pregnant too. Hope you can get on your bike soon! And thanks! Here's to a basket of kittens.

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  13. your bike is beautiful! The ones in the circle that you picked out are amazing but I'm just as jealous of yours! x

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    1. Aw, thanks. I just lucked out, really!

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  14. Your new bike is fab! I love the back crate. Wow the Creme Cycle is Amazing! I do a lot of bike window shopping as well, thanks for introducing me to this one. And I love your cup holder, brilliant!

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    1. Thank you! And yeah, those Creme cycles are so cute. Like, ridiculously so.

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  15. I have been looking for bikes just like this for a long time! I just have to invest in one, they are simply timeless!

    http://currentlylovingblog.blogspot.co.nz/

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    1. Good luck -- I hope you find one!

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  16. I love these amazing shots of your bike Anabela, the wine crate too is just genius & adds to the look. (You have such beautiful aesthetic sense).
    I have always wanted a bike, perhaps a nice one with a beach cruiser style frame, but sadly I didn't learn ever, & Mumbai is VERY FAR from being bike friendly.
    Someday, maybe. :) A girl can dream right?

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    1. I love that I have at least one reader who lives in Mumbai. What a cool city. And thank you! And yes, I dream very much every day, haha.

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  17. Lovely bike. I wish I could bike around Toronto, I'm just so paranoid about how people drive here :S I especially like the crest on the crate because it reminds me of the Stark family sigil..which makes me a nerd, I know.

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    1. I know the feeling! You have to be pretty careful (or pretty aggressive, which I am not). I love that you see the Stark family sigil in that! AWESOME.

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  18. Everything you've done with your bike is so pretty! I almost can feel the joy of riding it :D

    And now I'm thinking that I need a bike. But my dad said it'll be much more convenient to get a motorcycle instead, because I'll have a lot of obseravtion-things to go.

    But I want a bike! *rawr

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    1. Thank you! Well, motorcycles are pretty cool! Wouldn't be so bad to have one of those, or a scooter.

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  19. hi I saw a Creme bike - not this one - at the bike shop across the street from Curbside on Bloor so maybe they stock or order them for those interested.

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    1. Oh, interesting! I think I had checked the Creme website and they had no shops listed in Toronto, but I guess it's changed since then. Thanks for letting me know!

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    2. They only had one model in the window and this was some time ago (last summer I think) so I just assumed maybe they were carrying them. I'm going to try to find out. I can't remember the name of the shop so I will have to go back in person and find out what the deal is. Creme and Bella Ciao bikes are bikes I wish we had here.

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  20. I'll be moving to Toronto (from Montreal/Ottawa) with my bikes in tow but was wondering how flat or hilly you think the city is? Montreal is a nightmare full of hills but I'm wondering if i'll be able to get around much with my dutch bike or rely on my road bike. Moving around queen and ossington - thanks for you help?!

    p.s. love your blog, and I always get compliments on my tote/people staring to read what it says!

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    1. I've never been to Ottawa but Toronto is a prairie compared to Montreal! Really there aren't any hills you would have to worry about, just some gentle slopes that most bikes (except my really old, incredibly heavy Raleigh) can handle no problem. Especially in that neighbourhood (further north there are occasionally some bigger hills, but again, nothing compared to Montreal, and it's pretty hard to ride your bike outside of downtown anyhow).

      Thank you!

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  21. your bike is the supermodel of bikes - total glamour shots! :)

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    1. Thanks! I'll try to make sure my bike is happy to get out of bed for less than $10,000 a day.

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  22. The double exposure photo is gorgeous! Your bike is the perfect combination of beautiful and utilitarian. A vintage bike all fixed up for a second life makes me happy. I love the rack-wine crate look. I have that same headlight on my bike and I totally recommend the B67 saddle, when you're ready to lay down the money for it. So comfortable.

    My friend Trisha has an Abici and she loves it, but she also loves her vintage Peugeot.

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    1. Thanks, Dottie! Always love hearing your bike advice since you have such a passion for them.

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  23. I wish I could bike everywhere everyday...
    Beautiful picture!

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    1. I do too -- I miss it in winter!

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  24. Your bis is decked out! I love the crate idea.

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  25. ooops. That was suppose to say "bike", :)

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  26. your bike is so cute!!! love the idea of the coffee cup holder..
    and now i'm totally into the bobbin bicycle birdie...!
    so vintake-style bike are now popular in toronto?

    silvia

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    1. Thanks! And yeah, I think so. I do see a lot of vintage and vintage-style bikes around. Usually vintage bikes are the most affordable option, plus they last forever.

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  27. Your bike is the bee's knee's! I want one just like it!

    <3 Sarah
    theantiquepearl.blogspot.com

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  28. that bike is perfect!

    hellomrrabbit.blogspot.com

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  29. This is super helpful! I cannot help but be mildly terrified to bike in this city, however. I'm quite sure I'd be the extra cautious, wearing padding and a helmet kind of rider. I do suppose there really is only one way to build confidence for it, and that is to just do it.

    I just love the little charming additions you've added to your bike. Where are some of your favourite spots in the city to bike? Any great paths with pretty scenery?

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    1. Yes, exactly, you just have to do it! To be honest I don't really have much opportunity to ride for fun. Last summer Geoff and I took our bikes over to the island and that was a lot of fun, and I've heard good things about the railpath by Dundas West. My list of things that I have to do this summer is pretty long!

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  30. I splurged last year and got a baby blue Linus mixte. I named it "lil' cutie" and it's quite possibly my favourite thing ever. I could read your posts about bikes all day. I love your wine crate so much!

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    1. Oh, nice! I think I'm done with bike posts... but it was fun to spend a couple of weeks obsessing about them!

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  31. Wow - what a bicycle it is! It's really beautiful, and I love your additions, particularly the wine crate! I've been doing some serious beautiful-bicycle spotting in NYC the last couple of weeks – North America definitely has the lion's share of the beautiful vintage bicycle stock I reckon.

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    1. Thank you! That actually surprises me... I would have thought the UK was filled with beautiful vintage Raleighs and Pashleys!

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  32. What a terrific idea. I have been wanting a bike, but one that is low to the ground in case I fall off. Using my own energy instead of gasoline is very appealing.

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    1. I hope you can get one, they're great!

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  33. Oh v cool! as a total bike junkie myself [I just finished restoring a vintage bicycle, who I named Penny ha!] this post totally tickled my fancy [ps also, great blog, this is my first proper visit!]. After a bit of a backtrack to your other bike post I realised we also have the same bell! [however mine is copper to match the copper rivets on my brooks saddle].

    Happy cycling x

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  34. I am in love with this mint colored bike!

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  35. Love your wheels! I have a bobbin birdie and have been playing around with a wine crate basket idea. I am having problems with how to attach it to the back rack. Any chance you have a tutorial or tips on how you did it!?!?

    Thanks!

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