Gift guides. They're everywhere at this time of year, and yes, they have their uses. But at Bespoke we do things a bit differently. We're not your typical bike shop, and we're not going to buy hundreds of something and then try to convince you to buy them.
It goes back to the very core of what we do, bike fitting. We don't fill a warehouse with bikes and squeeze people onto whatever we have in stock. We start with the rider, and order exactly the bike, and components, needed for the perfect fit.
So, in keeping with that approach, here are a few of our favourite things; some might be classed as "stocking fillers", some are ultimate no-expense-spared treats. And if you're stuck for a gift idea, get in touch, or better still come and visit us in-store, tell us who it's for, and our obsessive cyclists will be happy to recommend an appropriate gift for any budget.
SILCA HX-TWO TRAVEL KIT
Whether you're treating yourself or someone else, good tools are something that'll last, and hex keys (allen keys) will always be useful for a multitude of tasks on and off the bike.
Silca's HX-Two set really impressed us when we tested it earlier in the year and has proven to be a top seller. These are proper "heirloom quality" tools, precision made, durable and beautifully finished, in a smart presentation box.
BESPOKE TRAVEL WEEKENDS
These definitely fit into the "ultimate" category. Four days of fully-supported cycling on some of the world's finest roads, in a small group with expert guides.
Ride with like-minded individuals, all passionate cyclists, and marvel at just how much we can pack into a short break.
PNS MERINO WINTER-WEIGHT SOCKS
No seasonal selection would be complete without some socks. We love these PNS winter warmers - a Merino wool blend gives good insulation without bulk, and they have a wonderfully soft finish without sacrificing durability. These aren't intended for sub-zero conditions, but they're just right for the bulk of a typical British winter, providing some much-needed comfort on a cold, damp day.
SPECIALIZED S-WORKS RECON
These are brand spanking new, but they've got a heck of a pedigree. Specialized have taken the best qualities from our favourite road shoes, the S-Works 7, and added a whole lot of off-road capability. The end result is a stiff, light shoe with awesome grip. These are shaping up to be a new modern classic, and initial stocks are very limited. We have some of the first to reach the UK, so grab them now while you can, it's the perfect time of year.
Q36.5 KNEE WARMERS
When I'm out riding at this time of year a common sight is the fellow roadie clad in insulated jacket, toastie gloves and Roubaix-lined cap... but with bare knees. I'm on a mission to stamp out frozen-knee syndrome.
You don't need to be a sports scientist to appreciate that your knees are an important part of the cycling process, and they don't appreciate the cold. It's not "Pro" to ride with your knees out in the winter chill, it's a recipe for long-term problems. Lead by example, cover up, your knees will thank you.
SILCA SUPERPISTA ULTIMATE HIRO EDITION
Who'd buy what must surely be the world's most expensive pump as a gift? Well, Barry for one. You can read his thoughts on this "ultimate by name, ultimate by nature" floor pump on the blog.
SILCA pumps have seen decades of use in workshops, team vans and homes around the world. Their precision construction and fully serviceable design means they're designed to last - the "Swiss watch" of the bike world. Yes it's an investment, but that's the point - this is something that goes against the grain of a disposable culture, it's eminently practical but also simply a thing of beauty.
DOUCHEBAGS THE SAVAGE
If you're on a Bespoke Travel trip we'll arrange safe, secure transport of your bike to and from Bespoke Gresham Street. But not every trip is so convenient, and for those occasions when you need to entrust your bike to the baggage hold a reliable case is essential.
This clever design blends the light weight of a soft case with the heavy duty protection of a hard case. An internal "roll cage" style frame ensures that your bike will be cossetted during even the roughest of trips, whilst the whole thing packs away to a remarkably small size when you reach your destination (or for storage at home).
CERAMICSPEED UFO DRIP
One of the surprise hits of the last 18 months. Chain lube might seem to be a solved problem by now, but it's one of the biggest technical challenges on a bike. CeramicSpeed have applied their unrivalled expertise in reducing frictional losses to chain lubrication, and the end result is a super-slippy chain coating like no other, giving 3-5 watts of savings.
BESPOKE BASE LAYER
Well of course these are a favourite, they've got our name on them ;-)
Seriously though, every cyclist needs a selection of base layers at the foundation of their wardrobe. We get to ride in a lot of different shapes and styles, so when it came to choosing our "own brand" we had a definite head start. Two versatile colour options, four snug-fitting, stretchy sizes. These are multi-season staples.
ENVE G-SERIES WHEELS
Gravel/Adventure is huge right now, and it's no passing fad, we've been blown away by the sheer fun factor of the ultra-capable multi-terrain bikes. ENVE's latest G-series wheelsets are specifically designed for the challenges of gravel riding, adding an extra level of durability, and much-needed pinch flat protection whilst maintaining their usual supple ride feel and light weight. If you're getting into gravel, these are one of the finest upgrades you can make.
BESPOKE GIFT VOUCHERS
A well-chosen Gift Voucher is as thoughful a gift as any. And what better than helping to ensure efficient, injury-free and comfortable riding for the years ahead?
We offer a range of vouchers, not just the traditional £ value, but also for our own Bespoke bike servicing, and of course Bike Fit. As you'd expect from Bespoke they're beautifully printed and presented
It might sound cheesy, but it's true: We can't talk about favourite things without mentioning our absolute favourite, the reason we do what we do. Riding, talking about and sharing the love of bikes is genuinely at the core of Bespoke.
Unsure on a gift idea for the cyclist who seems to have everything? Want to treat yourself to a seasonal upgrade but overwhelmed by the options? Come and see us! We don't work on commission, we don't just flog whatever's in stock, we ride and we sell what we believe in and that gives us a real advantage when it comes to recommending gifts.
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