Our Design Sensitivities
At Juicy Bike, we’re sensitive, thoughtful types, prone to introspection and the odd existential crisis. The way we see it though, as long as we’re not in the middle of anything fiddly, involving heavy loads or jagged edges to injure ourselves with, then it probably doesn’t do us any harm. Retro/vintage “Dutch style” electric bikes are an essential part of our roster, and have been from the beginning. But, why? And what does that even mean? What are these terms, “retro” and “vintage” that we bandy about with such nonchalance, safe in the knowledge that this is Who We Are? Such is our latest neurosis.
Having done a little digging, it seems that “retro” and “vintage”, although often used interchangeably, are in fact two distinct concepts.
Simply put, for something to be vintage it needs to have been made during the time in question, whereas something is considered retro if it is based on designs from days gone by.
Nostalgia: cure-all or feelgood?
Retro design is big business these days. Nostalgia, once considered an illness, now forms the inspiration for the design of many of the world’s most sought after products. Fiat, Volkswagen and Mercedes have all consciously incorporated classic curvy elements from their own design archives, whilst at the same time embracing innovation in mechanical engineering.
Returning to cycling, Pashley bikes are another case in point. Having been in business since the 1920s, they have gradually come to incorporate modern essentials such as gears, reflectors and a dynamo powered light whilst retaining their classic curves and gorgeous pastoral colours. and as a result perfectly embody the retro aesthetic.
Elephant Bikes are another great example of how feel good nostalgia works to help promote, in this case, a worthy cause rather than a conglomerate multi-national.
Taking inspiration from the UK's Pashley Bicycle company, by recycling old "Postie Cycles" heartstrings are pulled, encouraging new owners to buy two bikes and having one ridden on their behalf for free (by a needy person on the other side of the globe) - twice the wheels, half the effort and with a massive feel good factor thrown in!
It's all about loving your bike
This is the genius of retro: merging the beauty of vintage design with the comforts and technological advances of the modern era. For us, there is an additional dimension. When people choose a retro styled eBike, they do so, at least in part, for its aesthetic beauty. Because of this, an emotional connection between the rider and their new bike is formed. Maintenance is no longer a chore but an active pleasure. Riders relish the ritual of polishing, adjusting and maintaining their two-wheeled companion, and thanks to an expanding array of posh cleaning products, oils and beautifully weighted tools to enhance the experience, the bike continually receives the TLC it needs and deserves. This means that, when the time comes to move on to a newer model, the old one is not simply dumped in a landfill, but passed onto a new owner, in great condition, to be enjoyed all over again...
And anything that encourages reusing and recycling is good by us!
If you fancy revelling in all things vintage, retro and cycling then why not come see us on our stand at Eroica Britannia this weekend? This 3 day event is a cycling and family lifestyle festival, and a celebration of the great British summer. “The world’s most handsome bike ride” - featuring 4500 riders and their vintage steeds of steel - forms the centrepiece, but there’ll be a whole host of other attractions, including a vintage style fairground and an RAF Spitfire flyover...Not to mention ourselves, the Peak District’s most handsome electric bikes! Add to that great food and drink and you’ve all the ingredients for a fantastic day out.
Spectacular King George moustaches encouraged but not required.