Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

Happy Ride2School Day!

Happy National #Ride2School Day!

My son’s kindergarten, daycare centre and local primary school kids joined the ‘bike bus’ and rode through the local streets with smiles and cheers before finishing up with a healthy breakfast in their bush garden.

Over the past 40 years the number of children who are physically active every day has significantly dropped. Today, levels of physical activity are at an all-time low. In the 1970s, eight out of ten students rode or walked to school. That number has dropped to just two out of ten. 

Cycling, scootering and walking to school is an easy way to start the day with some exercise – and studies show kids are then happier, more engaged and ready to learn.

Let’s get more kids healthy and active – plus riding to school is FUN!

Did your school join in Ride2School Day?

Letter to the Local Councillors and State Members of Parliament advocating for safe bike infrastructure in Maribyrnong

Photo via ABC

As promised in my previous post, here is my email regarding the death of a female cyclist at the corner of Whitehall St and Somerville Road Yarraville yesterday after being struck by a truck.

I sent a variation of this email to every City of Maribyrnong councillor (info here http://www.maribyrnong.vic.gov.au/Page/Page.aspx?Page_Id=8484), Wade Noonan, the local State Member wade.noonan@parliament.vic.gov.au and Luke Donellan, Minister for Roads and Road Safety luke.donnellan@parliament.vic.gov.au, with relevant amendments for each recipient.

Because these are my personal feelings on this issue please don’t just copy-paste the whole text. But feel free to use it as a basis for a template for your own correspondence.

Let’s make some noise and make sure our voices are heard, for the safety of everyone on our streets.

 

I refer to the news today that a female cyclist in her 30s died yesterday after being hit by a truck at the intersection of Whitehall Street and Somerville Road, Yarraville.

I feel compelled to write to you because that woman could easily have been me, or my children. I’m a City of Maribyrnong resident and I am a female cyclist in my 30s who cycles regularly as a mode of transport, often with my two children aged 4 and 6 years old.

Whitehall Street has an off-street bike lane but at the intersection of Somerville Road cyclists are forced to share the road with a busy truck route with a desultory ‘bike lane’ marked by a white line. There is no physical barrier, no sharrows, no bollards, bike advance traffic signals or even green road paint.

While the relevant locations are owned and managed by VicRoads, they are located within the City of Maribyrnong.

As such I am seeking your assistance to advocate for:

  • the State Government amending its design requirements for Western Distributor to include a requirement to provide safe, protected and separated cycling infrastructure at Whitehall St x Somerville Road and along Somerville Road until at least Williamstown Road (the “relevant locations”);
  • the State Government and VicRoads to engineer an interim safe cycling solution at the relevant locations until the Western Distributor is completed; and
  • an increase in spending on bicycle infrastructure by the City of Maribyrnong commensurate with other Melbourne inner city municipalities.

 

Safe cycling infrastructure at the relevant locations

I know as a local councillor you can apply political pressure on the State Government and VicRoads to engineer a safe solution to cyclists being forced to mix with cars and trucks at the relevant locations.

Firstly, the current design requirements for Western Distributor state there will be a new fully separated walking and cycling connection from the Somerville Road/Whitehall St intersection to the Maribyrnong River.

However, once a cyclist moves inland from the intersection there will be no separated bike infrastructure.

If we are to prevent further deaths at this cycling black spot then the design requirements for Western Distributor need to be amended to specifically require that there is separated bike infrastructure at the relevant locations.

Secondly, as Western Distributor will take years to complete I am also asking that you apply political pressure on the State Government and VicRoads now to engineer an interim solution that can be quickly applied to enhance the safety of the relevant locations.

Funding of cycling infrastructure in the City of Maribyrnong

This tragic death also highlights the inadequate funding that City of Maribyrnong currently allocates to cycling infrastructure.

The Maribyrnong Bicycle Strategy 2014-2019 indicates that Council recognises the benefits of environmental, mobility, health and social equity benefits of investment in infrastructure and programs supporting cycling.

A 2011 study by the Cycling Promotion Fund and the National Heart Foundation describes the top four reasons why Australians (who would like to) do not cycle for transport:

–        Unsafe road conditions (46%);

–        Speed/volume of traffic (42%);

–        Don’t feel safe riding (41%); and

–        Lack of bicycle lanes/trails (35%).

The percentages are further increased when the question is asked of women.

Further the ABS forecasts that between 2013-2031 the population in Maribyrnong is predicted to increase to 111,189, a rise of 30% on the forecast population for 2015 of 85,302.

Investing in safe cycling infrastructure directly alleviates the four main reasons why Australians do not cycle and it is an economically efficient transport solution for Maribyrnong’s predicted population growth.

The 16/17 Council budget shows proposed expenditure of $350,000 on bicycle network upgrades on the river trail, which equates to only $4.18 per capita.

If the Council is truly committed to increasing cycling as a mode of transport then it needs to increase its expenditure on cycling to be at least commensurate with other Melbourne inner city municipalities (2016 data):

–        Melbourne (VIC): $12.02 – down from $50 in 2012

–        Port Phillip (Vic): $9.36 – assumes 70% of Walk & Bike funding for bikes. Includes external funding.

–        City of Yarra (Vic): $8.64 (Excludes $485k of external funding for a shared path)

–        Darebin (Vic): $5.16

Finally you would know that Maribyrnong has a cycling gender gap (only 26% of cyclists in Maribyrnong are women) and in general women are more sensitive to the absence of dedicated bike lanes. Women are an indicator species for cycling – when a route reaches parity between genders then the route is safe for cyclists generally. Thus the measures that promote cycling as a safe mode of transport for women should be a priority when considering the allocation of cycling funding.

I am hoping that there will be a coordinated response to this tragedy so I will be sending similar correspondence to the other City of Maribyrnong councillors, Wade Noonan, State Member for Williamstown and Luke Donellan, the Minister for Roads and Road Safety.

I look forward to receiving your response.

Thanks in advance

 

Joyce Watts

We need to talk about safe bike infrastructure and cycling deaths

I normally try to keep CycleStyle blog posts upbeat and positive. To spread the message that cycling is a convenient, healthy and fun way to get around.

However, I woke up this morning to this horrific news. A woman in her 30s was killed last night after being hit by a truck on the corner of Somerville Road and Whitehall Street, Yarraville. 

I cried at the gym while I was thinking about this woman and her family and friends.

I’m a woman cyclist in her 30s. I live in the inner west of Melbourne. I have often ridden past that corner of Somerville Road and Whitehall Street. I am really rattled to get on my bike today.

That woman could have been me. That woman could have been my two kids. 

So I feel compelled to be take action. The two roads in question are owned and managed by VicRoads and are located within the City of Maribyrnong. Whitehall Street has an off-street bike lane but at the intersection of Somerville Road cyclists are forced to share the road with a busy truck route with a desultory ‘bike lane’ marked by a white line. There is no physical barrier, no sharrows, no bollards, bike advance traffic signals or even green road paint.

This is not good enough. 

The research is unequivocal. Bikes, cars and especially trucks don’t mix well. Cyclists need protected bike lanes to be and feel safe. Build safe bicycle infrastructure and people will use it.

VicRoads know this. City of Maribyrnong know this. Their lack of action is due to lack of funding and lack of political will.

So this woman’s needless death is the time to make your voice heard. I urge you to write to:

Demand a coordinated team response to this tragedy. Demand more funding for bicycle infrastructure in the City of Maribyrnong from the council and from VicRoads. Given the projected population growth at Maribyrnong, both the state and local government need to step up its financial commitment to provide safe options for more people to cycle as a mode of transport.

I have posted a version of my emails to the various politicians here.

**UPDATE** A ride in memory of the cyclist Arzu Baglar has been organised for Monday 13 March 4:30pm by the advocacy and news group Cycle. I’ll be heading to this ride with my family so we can show the politicians that we need and demand action for safer cycling infrastructure in Melbourne’s west. Let’s show them some strength in numbers!

Ride with Joyce at Women of the World (WOW) Festival 2017

T Cavallaro and Sons Footscray

The Women of the World (WOW) Festival is coming to Melbourne for the first time on Thursday 23 March – Saturday 25 March. Footscray Community Arts Centre will come alive for the three-day festival celebrating women and exploring the remaining challenges to gender equality. With over 80 speakers, and 90 events happening in three days, the Melbourne festival is a not-to-be-missed celebration and a timely call to action.

Joyce Watts from CycleStyle will be leading FREE Pushy Women bike rides on Saturday 25 March! Discover diverse businesses run by Westie Women creators, makers and doers. The morning ride is especially for mums and bubs in a bike seat. Book now.

Check out the full program of conversations, music, film and performance, including free events and kid-friendly events. Here are some of the highlights:

Thursday 23 March – Saturday 25 March:

WOW Café – FREE curated program featuring festival highlights such as conversations, short talks and performances. You’ll also find the WOW Marketplace there with stalls by local designers, artists and makers, including CycleStyle.

 

Thursday 23 March – Friday 24 March:

Fluidity – FREE walk with local artist Chantal Wynter who will guide you to contemplate what is cherished in our society and what is discarded, and to examine how Footscray’s unique environs reflect these thoughts.

 

Saturday 25 March:

WOW kids – FREE workshops and games with 100 Story Building, The Stella Prize, Robogals, Women’s Circus and hula hoopers!

WOW Make Noise concert – FREE gig on the lush lawns of FCAC after the WOW Kids’ program. Featuring Sampa the Great, Mojo Juju, Electric Fields, The Black Sistaz, Sugar Fed Leopards, MzRizk and Thando. Bring a picnic and enjoy the music and the atmosphere!

 

CycleStyle x Habitots Pop Up Shop – Come and visit us in March!

habitots

Habitots is a gorgeous store in Albert Park full of retail inspiration for children and families as well as a party space and creative art studio.

habitots pop up shop

During March we’re excited to have a Pop Up Shop inside Habitots with some of our best-selling items for kids.

habitots pop up shop

You’ll find cute hand-painted Beep Bicycle Bells, Baby Nutty and Little Nutty Nutcase Helmets, practical Notabags for Kids, durable Italian-made handlebar windmills and hard-to-find kids wicker baskets.

habitots

While you’re at Habitots visit one of their classes, hang out in their playroom or enjoy the garden with sand pit and cubby house. And now for a limited time you can find the best kids cycling gear too!

CycleStyle x Habitots Pop Up Shop

1 March – 31 March 2017

146 Bridport St, Albert Park 03 9686 1312

Mon, Tues, Fri: 9am – 3pm

Wed, Thur: 9am – 4pm

Saturday 10am – 4pm

 

Amsterdam is providing floating bike parking

Oh Amsterdam, we’re so jealous.

The world’s cycling modal share leader is so overcrowded with bikes now that the challenge is now with parking.

Last year the city’s authorities reclaimed space occupied by 64,000 bikes chained to railings and lamp posts.

Now there are plans to add bike parking on the water with a series of pontoon bike docks, as well as excavating below the canals to create underground bike parking.

It is projected that by 2023 there will be 17,500 more bike parking spaces at Amsterdam’s Centraal Station, rising to 21,500 by 2030 when the bike pontoons are open.

To view the plans in full, click here.

Sydney Rides Challenge this March!

Sydney Rides Challenge is starting this March with the aim to encourage more people to get on bikes!

Celebrate the start of the challenge at a free breakfast in Prince Alfred Park or Observatory Hill on Wednesday 1 March.

Collect points  for every trip and for encouraging others to ride their bike.

You could be in the running for some fantastic prizes, including a trip to Croatia, new bikes and BridgeClimb tickets.

Register today and if you encourage another person to take part you could take home the top encourager trophy at the awards presentation in April.

 

 

Pushy Women West – free bike training in Braybrook

bike tours melbourne

If you are a woman from Melbourne’s West who wants to learn to ride a bike (or to get a refresher course on bike riding) then sign up to The Squeaky Wheel’s newest program PUSHY WOMEN WEST!

PUSHY WOMEN WEST is a FREE bicycle training program delivered by women for women from the Braybrook Community Hub in March 2017.

You don’t need to own a bike – a bike and all safety gear is provided for the training. Once you complete the program you receive a free second-hand bicycle and safety gear from The Squeaky Wheel and Footscray Rotary Bike Shed.

An Information session will be run on Wednesday 22 February, 10am at Braybrook Community Hub. If you can’t make it but want to join just contact The Squeaky Wheel.

Learn to Ride sessions held on Wednesdays, 1, 8, 15 and 22 March, 10am – 12pm. Ideally you should commit to all sessions in order to get the most out of it, but drop in ladies are welcome too.

Note that you will not be able to bring children to the sessions but at the end of the program The Squeaky Wheel will support woment o receive a child seat from the Footscray Rotary Bike Shed.

PUSHY WOMEN WEST is brought to you by City of Maribyrnong and with the kind support of Footscray Rotary Bike Shed.

Jan Gehl in Melbourne on People, Places and Liveable Cities

Jan Gehl believes ‘A good city is like a good party. People stay longer than really necessary because they are enjoying themselves.’

The hugely influential urbanist, architect and humanist was in Melbourne and I was lucky enough to be in the audience.

I am so engaged by his talk that I don’t bother trying to update social media with any of his insights. So here’s a selection of #melbconvo #jangehl tweets from the night to give you a flavour of his stories of a life of making our cities happier and more liveable.

People once said cycling couldn’t take off in Copenhagen. Then they decided to plan to make it happen. #melbconvo
“Modernism killed the people scale” #melbconvo#jangehl

Cycling in Melbourne when you’re a woman

Cyclestyle cargobike

Today the age ran an article entitled ‘Cycling is still a mostly male affair in Melbourne‘.

As a female cyclist in Melbourne, I’m hardly surprised.

The article points out that the average Melbourne cyclist – male, aged 36-45 – rides 5-10km for commuting or transport. They are comfortable riding with general traffic on the roads.

The biggest problem with cycling in Melbourne when you’re a woman is that the city’s network of bike paths don’t connect to each other and don’t go to the places that as a general rule, women need to go.

Women, if they are parents, are often the primary caregiver. That means that the most often used route is to and from school, kindergarten, daycare. In my case, my bike route involves crossing two major roads (both truck routes) and in some cases it means mounting the pavement to avoid the traffic.

Women in general still take on the bulk of the house duties. That means I need a convenient route to the local shops and services and a place to park my bike at the other end. The safety of the route is even more paramount as I often have my children tagging along to these shops and services.

I am not riding 5-10km a day. The maximum radius of most of my day to day life is about 3-4km. It’s a distance that’s too short for driving (plus the hassle of finding somewhere to park) but too long to walk if I have young children or groceries to carry.

A bike is the perfect solution, if only I didn’t have to mix with heavy traffic and to follow bike lanes that end abruptly and force me to complete my journey on the road.

At the moment, my biggest bugbear is travelling from Footscray onto the dedicated bike path along Dynon Road. The bike path is smooth, off road and sheltered – and hardly anyone uses it because it stops abruptly at the intersection of Kensington Road. To reach Footscray (and the rest of Melbourne’s inner west) there is a footpath and bridge that is like a narrow and uneven obstacle course. You cannot have two bikes easily pass along it, let along a cargo bike. Technically I’m not even supposed to be riding on the pavement as it’s illegal in Victoria.

As such I am forced onto Dynon Road because it is wide and smooth – and also full of trucks going 60km/hr. It is an extremely scary experience with children in the cargo bike and there is no way I’d let them ride alone on the road there. However, it’s the most direct route from the northern end of Footscray into the CBD and as long as I grit my teeth and bear the 1km of terror I can then rest easy on the bike path. I am very confident riding on the roads thanks to years of experience, but I am in the minority.

When you don’t have bike paths that go to where women need to go and bike paths that aren’t built in a safe manner where they’re protected from traffic, women won’t use bikes as their preferred mode of transport. Easy as that.

What are your thoughts on why cycling is still mostly a male affair in Melbourne?

Buon Appetito by Bike #2 with The Squeaky Wheel – Westie Women Food Rides in May

Ovest West Footscray

A very wet day didn’t deter a group of intrepid women joining us for another Westie Women food ride with The Squeaky Wheel.

The second edition of ‘Boun appetito by bike’ visited some slightly different venues to the previous ride as we celebrated everything Italian in the inner west with tour guide Joyce Watts of CycleStyle and MEL: HOT OR NOT.

First stop was Ovest for warming hot chocolates and potato doughnuts with chocolate mousse. Ovest were even kind enough to open up especially for us as they don’t usually trade during Saturday lunch times.

Ovest West Footscray

Second stop was Fox in the Corn for plates of steaming hot pasta. They even have bikes hung up as wall decoration so it’s the perfect stop for a bike tour!

Fox in the Corn Footscray

Last stop was T Cavallaro and Sons for an Italian (or technically Sicilian) sweet. Always a crowd favourite, their cannoli are the best in Melbourne.

T Cavallaro and Sons Footscray

The June rides are now open for bookings! If you’re a woman who lives, works or plays in Melbourne’s inner west join me for a 1.5 hour cycling tour of the best food in the area for only $15 (including tour and tastings).

Westie Women Food Rides are a Maribyrnong City Council Gender Equity Initiative. 

Buon Appetito by Bike with The Squeaky Wheel – Westie Women Food Rides in May

bike tours melbourne

The sun was shining yet again for our latest Westie Women food ride with The Squeaky Wheel.

bike tours melbourne

‘Boun appetito by bike’ celebrated everything Italian in the inner west with tour guide Joyce Watts of CycleStyle and MEL: HOT OR NOT.

bike tours melbourne

In the 1950s Footscray was a centre for Italian migrants. Sixty years later eleven female cyclists joined Joyce to experience how Italian cuisine has been reinterpreted for modern Australians with a three course meal by bike.

bike tours melbourne

First stop Ovest for charcuterie, cheese and breads.

bike tours melbourne

bike tours melbourne

Second stop Honeycomb Hideout for pizza and a group photo!

bike tours melbourne

bike tours melbourne

Last stop dessert at Slice Girls West.

bike tours melbourne

bike tours melbourne

Look out for booking information for the June rides soon!

Westie Women Food Rides are a Maribyrnong City Council Gender Equity Initiative. 

Creative Kids Bike Parking Design Competition in Maribyrnong

Maribyrnong City Council Bike Parking Design competition

Maribyrnong City Council are inviting Primary and Secondary school students within the municipality to design a work of art that can function as a place to park their bike.

The winning designs will be installed within the City of Maribyrnong plus there are over $1,700 worth of prizes.

There are two major prizes to be won – one for Primary students and one for Secondary students – which consist of:

  • A brand new bike and bike accessory pack from Ted’s Cycles in Footscray and
  • A $250 voucher courtesy of Highpoint Shopping Centre

The Runner up in each category will also win a $250 Highpoint voucher.

MCC_BikeParkCompA4_6aFA-page-001

Designs will be assessed on originality, aesthetic appeal, functionality as a bike rack and connection to Maribyrnong by a panel of expert judges including:

The competition is open to primary and secondary students (from Prep to Year 12) living or studying within the City of Maribyrnong.

Students may enter online or fill out the official promotional flyer, located at select cafes, shops and libraries around the City and send in by mail or deliver in person to Council.

The competition opened on Tuesday 26 April and runs until 5pm Friday 10 June.

Click here for full Competition Terms & Conditions and Privacy Collection Statement.

Wheelie Good Day North Melbourne – Sunday 1 May 2016

Wheelie Good Day is a community gathering and street party in Melrose Street North Melbourne and it’s on this Sunday 1 May 11am-4pm.

The day is all about educating and training families to ride a bike plus a full with a program of workshops, tours and fun!

We’ll be there with the Book Swap Bike, a Christiania cargo bike filled with secondhand children’s books and a pop up reading lawn. Families are invited to either bring a book to swap, to borrow a book to read together or to participate in colouring-in and/or craft activities.

Other fun activities include:
  • Face painting & bike decorating for KIDS
  • Bike doctors and skills course for KIDS
  • Pimp your bike workshop for TEENS
  • Bike skills course & tours of the local area for ADULTS
  • Long kick and handball competitions with North Melbourne Football Club
  • Knitting, knotting and weaving with a POM POM workshop
  • Hip Hop Street Show by Jason Coleman’s Ministry of Dance students!
  • Bike Tuneups from GOOD CYCLES
  • Fix a Flat with PONY BIKES
  • Bike Engraving from VIC POLICE
  • Street Mural suggestion workshop
  • CARGONE COURIERS Bike Boom Box
  • Delicious food & coffee from POCKET CAFE
  • ROLL UP Bicycle Valet Parking
  • $1 MAMMOTH ice cream, on a bike
  • BIKE n’ BLEND pedal powered Smoothies

See you there!

 

Wheelie Good Day

Sunday 1 May 2016 11am-4pm

Melrose Street, between Erskine and Canning Streets, North Melbourne

FREE event

Aster- world’s safest commuter cycling backpack

Aster- world's safest commuter cycling backpack

Aster is a prototype design for a commuting backpack with integrated bike lights, turn signals and automatic brake indication and it’s seeking funding via Indiegogo now. We think it’s pretty amazing!

Aster- world's safest commuter cycling backpack

The designers of Aster claim that they’ve addressed 75% of the causes of bike accidents.

Aster‘s rear and profile lights make you visible to motorists from all sides, front lights signal your presence in rear-view mirrors and automatic brake lights help you avoid getting rear-ended. Integrated turn signals make sure that drivers around you know when you’re making a turn.

Aster- world's safest commuter cycling backpack

Control Aster’s light settings and more with their app (called the Lumos Aster app), available for both Android and iOS platforms. You can adjust your light settings to meet the regulations specific to your state or country. The app allows you to see the battery life remaining, both  in the 4000mAh USB-chargeable battery and the handlebar unit.

Using the Lumos app and the handlebar-unit, you can lock your bike in its place with one tap! If your cycle is moved for more than 5 seconds once locked, an alarm is triggered to attract attention.

Aster also has several commuter-specific compartments – a minimalist helmet holder, a whistle buckle, tuck-away U-lock holder loops, zippered bottle pockets, rain-cover and an ‘In Case of Emergency’ information slot in the event of a crash.

Aster- world's safest commuter cycling backpack

You can pack a 15.6 inch laptop with charger, change of clothes and shoes, smaller gadgets, books, bike-tools and spares, rain-jacket, a 1 litre water bottle and even your lunch!

Aster- world's safest commuter cycling backpack

Aster is also weather-resistant, with a waterproof TPU coated exterior and rain-resistant zippers that cause water to bead up and roll off the surface.

Aster’s Indiegogo campaign ends on 30 April so get in quick to support the production of this innovative product!

Evolution of the Bicycle in just one minute

This one minute clip film illustrates the evolution of the bicycle from the first early contraptions to the modern machines on which our own bicycles are based.

Evolution of the Bicycle from Visual Artwork on Vimeo.

Cleverhood x Tandem NYC Collaboration – The Cleverhood Sweatshirt Cape for Tandem

Cleverhood x Tandem NYC Collaboration - The Cleverhood Sweatshirt Cape for Tandem

Susan Mocarski, artist and fashion designer, put Cleverhood on the map with their distinctive American made outerwear capes.

She and Lani from Tandem NY met at the National Bike Summit’s “Forum on Women & Bicycling” and with their shared interest in fashion and biking, worked together to launch Tandem and Cleverhood’s Sweatshirt Cape.

Cleverhood x Tandem NYC Collaboration - The Cleverhood Sweatshirt Cape for Tandem

This is no ordinary “hoodie”…

Cleverhood x Tandem NYC Collaboration - The Cleverhood Sweatshirt Cape for Tandem

The Cleverhood Sweatshirt Cape for Tandem is designed in NYC and carefully crafted in nearby Fall River, MA. This fleece cape offers a freedom of movement plus an expression of style with plenty of room for layering underneath to adjust to the weather.  There’s a handy inside kangaroo pocket with a second smaller pocket for your mobile device.  The hood sports the signature Tandem coral-colored drawstring.  The fabric is thick and soft and it’s machine washable.

Cleverhood x Tandem NYC Collaboration - The Cleverhood Sweatshirt Cape for Tandem

Fall River, MA was the textile centre of the US and an industrial leader.  Since 1990, Fall River has lost nearly 70% of its manufacturing jobs. The Cleverhood Sweatshirt Cape for Tandem is crafted by skilled USA garment workers.

Cleverhood x Tandem NYC Collaboration - The Cleverhood Sweatshirt Cape for Tandem

At select retailers & at www.TandemNY.com

Chalktrail for bikes and scooters – creative fun on your bike

Watch the Chalktrail in action!

Chalktrail installation instructions

CycleStyle at The Upmarket – Saturday 7 November

The Upmarket - 1 (2)

As Christmas creeps closer our market schedule gets busier – and we’re kicking off with The Upmarket, Melbourne’s newest design market.

The outdoor market is held in the forecourt between the Malthouse Theatre and the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art in Southbank every 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month, rain hail or shine.

Stallholders are picked by a design panel, with a focus on local emerging designers and producers, and divided into three precincts – the Design District, the Larder and the Heart of Dining. At each market there’s a revolving selection of furniture, lighting, homewares, accessories, fashion, jewellery, ceramics, food and produce vendors plus free children’s and adults creative workshops.

The Upmarket FB Tile

We’ll be at The Upmarket with lots of cycling goodies and market-only specials at the next market, Saturday 7 November 9am-4pm!

The Upmarket

Malthouse Theatre/ACCA forecourt

111 Sturt St, Southbank

9am-4pm

Introducing the Notabag – the bag that converts into a backpack from Frankfurt, Germany

notabag

Notabag is a smart combination of a bag and a backpack. With a single pull on the straps, it transforms itself from a sleek eco-friendly reusable bag to an easy-to-carry backpack. Its versatility allows you to carry it in your hands as well as comfortably on your shoulders. We’re so excited to be the first Australian retailer of the Notabag!

notabag

The Notabag idea was born during Adnan Alicusic’s trip to the local farmers market. It was one of those situations that we can all identify with – the grocery bag filled up very quickly and he still had to ride his bike home.

Things got pretty tricky once he found himself in the middle of busy city traffic, trying to manoeuvre a bike with a heavy shopping bag on the handlebar, bumping against the front wheel. At that moment, he started visualising how a simple bag could be transformed into a backpack.

After spending months of prototyping and testing, Adnan and his friend and fashion designer Ilaria Gregianin, introduced a smart way to combine a bag and a backpack as a Kickstarter project. The Notabag even folds up into a small pocket for those times when you need a bag unexpectedly!

notabag

It is made in Europe from cotton and rip-stop nylon. The fabric provides the product with sturdiness and soft touch of cotton fabric, yet it is still lightweight and water-resistant like the rip-stop nylon.

Notabag has been nominated for a German design award and ranked as Frankfurt’s Top 10 startups in 2015. They recently collaborated with Swedish bike brand Bookman to make a reflective Notabag especially for cyclists. We think you’ll love it as much as we do!

notabag