Kitty’s Christmas 2012 gift guide to stocking stuffers

Following on from my collection of cycling tees, here is a list of cool cycling-related stuff for you to buy your loved one – or yourself! – for Christmas. This list is all about the beautiful marriage of cycling and design, most of which are done by small businesses. So let us begin … Note: Nov 2013 – some of these products are no longer available – but some of them are!

Ring in the New Year

Anyone who reads any of the main cycling magazines or websites has seen the epic images of Jered and Ashley Gruber. They’ve been in Europe for most of this year and have added to their portfolio of passionate and subtle sports photography. They’ve just brought out their first Gruber Images 2012 calendar, which is good news! Available from Wiggle – at the time of writing, the calendar is on special promotion for £13.50 (RRP£15) with free UK delivery. Now all we need is for them to bring out a coffee-table book …

Gruber Images 2013 calendar; Wiggle; £15

Gruber Images 2013 calendar, Wiggle, £15

Caffeine accoutrements

Cycling and coffee go together like chestnuts and open fires …

Bernie Eisel mug, Rouleur, £19.99

Rouleur has a fine line in bone china mugs with selected Team Sky riders on them – including Cav (oops, well, we’re assuming they’ll keep those …), Wiggo, Bernie, G and Froomey. You can buy these individually for £19.99 or there’s a Brit Pack set, which includes Wiggo, Cav, Froomey and, um, that famous Brit, Bernie Eisel. That four-pack is £67.

Brit Pack Mugs, Rouleur, set of 4, £67

If you’re looking for something a little more timeless, try these espresso cups from Look Mum No Hands! (LMNH). Get these thick-walled cups with saucer for £15 each or a pair for £25. They also have mugs in this design for £10.

World Champion espresso cup and saucer, LMNH, £15

Zeitgeist Images is the brainchild of Mark Fairhurst, a graphic designer/illustrator who does an extensive line in cycling posters (more on those later in this post). You can also get any of the poster designs transferred onto a china coffee mug (£12.95 each). Get four of a kind or mix and match and you’ll be drinking your brew out of a work of art.

Peloton china coffee mug, Zeitgeist Images, £12.95

And last but not least in the china department, Cycling Souvenirs has Iconic Climbs espresso cups. From Alpe d’Huez to Zoncolan, there are nine different climbs and each cup and saucer set costs £9.50. They also do a set of 6 ‘Classics’ mugs: Milan-San Remo, Liege, Roubaix, Lombardia, Paris-Tours and Flanders for £41.

Tourmalet espresso cup and saucer, Cycling Souvenirs, £9.50

Classics mugs, Cycling Souvenirs, £41 for set of 6

Musettes and such

One must have a place to put one’s gels, bananas, iPhones, while riding OR an iPad, pens and pads, gum and wallet if you want to swan about town looking cool. That is where the high-end musette comes in handy.

(iL) Soigneur is producing limited edition National Champions musettes – so far, they’ve put Belgium and Switzerland into production. Made of heavy-duty canvas, these are hard-working, long-wearing accessories for your ride. £30 each. If you want to do a Karl Lagerfeld on your musette, you can build your own bag for £30 on the site.

Suisse National Champions musette, (iL)Soigneur, £30

If you can’t wait for your musette, you can pick one off the shelf at (iL) Soigneur in fun prints – these are, you guessed it, £30 each.

Off-the-shelf musette, (iL)Soigneur, £30

If you’re looking for a musette that’s a bit more subdued, Rapha cc has a city musette in sophisticated black heavy-duty nylon with a white leather stripe for £40. Just fabulous for speeding around town …

City musette, Rapha cc, £40

Everyone needs a cycling cap and LMNH has come to the rescue with a number of cycling caps with Union Jack designs. But for the Sky fan in your life, this Wiggins cycling cap has Wiggo on one side, a mod target on the other and a black and white herringbone design on the inside flap. £10.

Wiggins cycling cap, LMNH, £10

Build your own peloton

I love these little cyclists: their bikes are made of metal and they’re made of rubberised plastic. LMNH produces them in small quantities and in two colours – a World Champion jersey and a blue jersey – and they measure 6x6cm. £16 each.

Miniature cyclists, LMNH, £16

LMNH are also offering up hand-painted peloton figures in a variety of jersey colours. These are proper old school figures, made of solid die-cast metal zamak, measure about 5x5cm, and each comes in his own gift box. £9.95 each.

Hand-painted peloton figures, LMNH, £9.95 each

What do you need for tiny cyclists? Tiny climb markers! These KM markers for some of cycling’s most iconic climbs are from Cycling Souvenirs and cost £11.49 each. There are markers from the Alps, the Dolomites, Provence and the Pyrenees. You could set up your own little Tour de France with these.

Mountain markers; Cycling Souvenirs; £11.49 ea

Posters and paper

Last but not least, we have our original cycling posters. You may remember I did an interview with Bruce from Cycling Posters in July. Well, his stuff is still as beautiful. Bruce does posters of each stage of the Tour de France from 2010-2012. These hand-signed prints on archival paper are $40 each plus shipping from New Zealand.

Champs, Cycling Posters, $40

Neil Stevens of Crayonfire is another illustrator who takes his inspiration from cycling and the Tour de France in particular. He has a wide range of cycling posters, including the stages of the Tour done typographically. He also does portraits of cycling legends, including Eddy Merckx and Mark Cavendish.

Stage 15, TdF 2012, Crayonfire, from £30

Eddy Merckx, Crayonfire, from £30

Back to Zeitgeist Images, Mark Fairhurst has a range of cycling posters, as well as 2012 Olympic posters, to choose from. Printed on matt paper, they come in sizes from A2 (£30) to A0 (£60). (Copyright qualifier does not appear on the printed poster.)

Flamme Rouge poster, Zeitgeist Images, from £30

Zeitgeist also offers a set of cycling Christmas cards – a pack of six cards (two each of three designs) is £13.50.

Christmas cards, Zeitgeist Images, £13.50 for 6

And for that final touch of wrapping paper, we once again look to LMNH to fill our need for cycling design. Sheets of this lovely design will set you back just £3. Not too much to spend on the one you love, is it?

Bicycle wrapping paper, LMNH, £3

Kitty’s Christmas 2012 gift guide to cycling tees

Christmas present

It’s December, and a cycling fan’s mind turns to thoughts of, well, you know, Christmas …

This is my eclectic list of teeshirts (and a few lovely merino wool tops) related to cycling that caught my eye because they’re funny or beautiful or both and are from small businesses who are in it for the love as well as the money. Hopefully you’ll find something you like in this list and print it off with a big circle around it so your loved one can see it and order it, or you may find something to give a loved one. Note: Nov 2013 – some of these products are no longer available, but some of them are!

Groovy tees

You really can’t go wrong with a cool tee and cycling fans are spoiled for choice.

I Am the Motor, Stomach of Anger, $25 (c£17)

Stomach of Anger is a teeshirt company based in East Lansing, Michigan, which is where I studied art history (and boys) at Michigan State University. I love these teeshirts because they’re subtle. I am the motor is what Fabian Cancellara said when the UCI decided to x-ray his bike to make sure it didn’t have an engine and we all know about the Suitcase of courage. (Of course even the company name is an inside joke – what Andy Schleck said after Chaingate …). And lest we forget, 108. The tees are about $25, which is about £17, and shipping is about $6-10 to the UK. Best order asap for Christmas.

Suitcase of Courage, Stomach of Anger, $25 (c£17)

108, Stomach of Anger, $25 (c£17)

Super-cool Velolove do a line of Pantone-chip inspired Grand Tour jersey tees. My favourite is the Giro’s maglia rosa. One of their most popular designs is Mod Chainring – if you like it, you need to get one quick! They also do a line of teeshirts celebrating the different types of cyclists, including domestique. Wear them with pride! Tees are £25 with free UK delivery.

Mod chainring, Velolove, £25

Maglia Rosa, Velolove, £25

Domestique, Velolove, £25

Of course, you should all know by now what Riding Paniagua means – so why not wear your philosophy on your sleeve or, er, chest? Designed by Velocast, this teeshirt is available in a variety of colours and styles (even those really cool baseball shirts – you know the ones, white body with coloured sleeves?) for men and women. They start at about £20 for tees and go up to  around £38 for hoodies. They also have stickers(!) at about two squids. Available from redbubble.

Riding Paniagua, Velocast, c£20

In a sort of Led Zeppelin homage, the Three Chainrings teeshirt is subtle yet striking. It comes in four different styles, including long-sleeved and fitted, and in eight colours, although I think basic black is the best. Around £21, available from CafePress.

Three Chainrings, Cafe Press, c£21

Romster Bike Wear has a great selection of teeshirts for men, women and children and is particularly strong on teeshirts celebrating British cyclists such as Tom Simpson and Bradley Wiggins. My favourite, however, is Hell of the North. Around £20.

Hell of the North, Romster Bike Wear, c£20

Tom Simpson World Champion, Romster Bike Wear, c£20

And for something a little more sophisticated

Chris of Velobici does a beautiful range of merino wool cycling clothes. As this Christmas guide isn’t about cycling kit per se, I’ve picked out a few of the pieces that could easily be incorporated into your everyday wardrobe. The Tommy Goodwin classic jersey is in homage to the 1948 Olympic track hero and is a seamless, quarter-zip jersey made from 100% organic Merino wool and is £145. Guaranteed to make anyone look like a hero. Or go for the Christmas bundle of classic cardigan (in black or grey), cable scarf (in claret/grey or light grey/dark grey) and long cuff gloves – all in seamless 100% Merino wool – for £160 (saving over 20%).

Tommy Godwin classic jersey, Velobici, £145

Christmas bundle, Velobici, £160

But that’s not all – look out for my selection of stocking stuffers, coming this way tomorrow!