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Portland Custom Bike Culture

Apr 25, 2008

by Vanessa Bertozzi handmade and vintage goods

Bike culture in Portland is maybe the awesomest in the country! (Care to debate? Let it be known in the comments below!)

We found this video on Youtube about a custom bike exhibit at the Portland airport and we were really excited to learn about Sweetpea Bikes, one of the only two female-run custom bike shops for women in the US. 

Do you have a custom bike? Let us know in the comments below!

on reserve COURTNEYCOURTNEY safety bicycle 5T recycled tshirt dress
on reserve COURTNEYCOURTNEY safety bicycle 5T recycled tshirt dress
Day of the Dead Glitter Sugar Skull Basket Liner\/ Sewing Machine Cover\/ Mixer Cover
Day of the Dead Glitter Sugar Skull Basket Liner\/ Sewing Machine Cover\/ Mixer Cover
Orange Tricycle - Fine Art Photograph
Orange Tricycle - Fine Art Photograph


  • Chillionaire Admin

    Chillionaire said 12 years ago

    I'm glad to argue that Richmond, VA has the best bicycle community ^-^

  • qwynwyn

    qwynwyn said 12 years ago

    I so want a road bike now. Thanks for spotlighting this business. I can't really say anything about bike culture in San Diego...

  • littlepurls

    littlepurls said 12 years ago

    YAY FOR PORTLAND! Hands down my favorite city in the world! For anyone who's never been there, let me paint you a picture. They have roads designated for bicycle use. Not just lanes, but entire roads. With signs warning cars to stay out of the street during rush hour. And believe me, there is rush hour on the bike streets just like on the freeways. Its amazing to be riding your bike on your way to work or school and to be in the midst of a veritable river of other bike commuters. I'm not exaggerating, it gets crowded. I can't wait to move back up there.

  • pollyannacowgirl

    pollyannacowgirl said 12 years ago

    Awesome video! I think that the Portland bike culture is pretty darn epic. It even got me to start riding a bike! :)

  • snegoratchka

    snegoratchka said 12 years ago

    boston bike culture is just weird. But I DO have a custom made bike, for Independent Fabrication, who have their shop right around the corner from my house. And i have never, even in my love loved any thing, person, or place, more than I love that bike.

  • kimonomomo

    kimonomomo said 12 years ago

    Oregon is quite a bike friendly state, I'm proud to say! Portland is not the only city in Oregon to embrace cycle culture, but it certainly does show other cities how it can be done. I've lived in Eugene, Corvallis and Bend, and all are bike friendly areas.

  • pinkhat

    pinkhat said 12 years ago

    and following up on snegoratchka's comment, this is why i think boston bike culture is weird but amazing and hilarious:

  • mmmfiber

    mmmfiber said 12 years ago

    Ha! Their garage/shop is right down the street from my house, we walk the dogs by all the time and they are always hard at work cranking on something. Cool article!

  • TigerVintage

    TigerVintage said 12 years ago

    what about chicago????? we stop traffic.

  • nydampress

    nydampress said 12 years ago

    The North American Handmade Bicycle Show was in Portland this spring too. Basically the biggest gathering of custom bicycle builders from around the country, ever.

  • scrumdidlyump

    scrumdidlyump said 12 years ago

    Asheville also has a really cool bike community. There is a place called the Bike Recyclery where you can go, use their tools, spare parts and expertise to fix up your bike, or even build a new Frankenstein bike from donated odds and ends.

  • raghousenternational

    raghousenternational said 12 years ago

    Nice video. I need to learn how to bike again.

  • sparkledawne

    sparkledawne said 12 years ago

    no bike is complete without a bell :)

  • phoebe1

    phoebe1 said 12 years ago

    yay pdx bikes!

  • dogwoodlane

    dogwoodlane said 12 years ago

    Great article! Arkansas also has a great cycling community... a little surprising, but true. Nice bells sparkledawne! You also need a seat bag!

  • akcupcake

    akcupcake said 12 years ago

    Awesome recognition! Anchorage, AK is movin up in the bike communities! Don't have a custom bike but am pretty proud of my Schwinn Collegiate. Need a custom seat cover?.....

  • CyclonaDesigns

    CyclonaDesigns said 12 years ago

    My backyard is filled with custom choppers because my sweetheart is a maniac for building bikes. I have one for myself that I love the best, with tall ape hanger bars, a comfy seat, a strong and spindly frame and a long extended forks - I think of her like a frankenstein thoroughbred mare. I use bike parts in most of my work and my town has some great bike culture and awesome riding - Victoria BC!

  • rustymill

    rustymill said 9 years ago

    Custom bicycles rock! There is a women's custom builder in our town

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