Melissa's Crush List May 2016

My partner Charlie likes to tease me about how I plan well ahead of time what I'm going to wear for certain meetings and events. I just smile. I've been like this since High School. Planning what I'll wear makes me feel at my best. That's why fashion is so powerful. It can help us feel we're putting our best selves forward. Every woman I know has a "go to" outfit or two in her wardrobe, don't you? Items that make you feel polished, together, and express your true personality?

It's really no different than planning well for a speech or presentation (where we're learning approach is as important as content).

This spring I'm crushing seriously on classic staples like black, white, and denim. From upper left I love: The look and feel of this loose v-neck t with the elegant detail on the sleeve from Reformation for $28; this Po Campo Uptown Trunk for $79.99 which matches another Po Campo bag I have and means I could walk out my door on my bike packed for the weekend - sweet!; Yellow 108's sustainably produced Dylan Fedora for $108 that gives more sun coverage than most; a statement suit that can be easily mixed and matched and this J. Crew Window Pane Tweed at $168.00 for the jacket, and $98 for the pants so fit the bill; Levi's commuter line for women denim shirt (found it online once, now I can't find it again but I'll keep searching), and yes all this chic wonderfulness deserves a new pair of Warby Parker Ripley Shades starting at $145.00.

How about you? What's your #StylishbyBike crush wardrobe for this spring?

Levi's Here's a Female Commuter You Should Know

Image: From new commuter line for women from Levi's.

Image: From new commuter line for women from Levi's.

After a very long wait Levi's has finally launched its commuter line for women. But rather on the quiet side. I'm really hoping there's a smart strategy behind this. It was a bit disconcerting to read about the new line in Momentum Magazine over the weekend and then not be able to find a promotional video on Youtube.com using the search term "levi's commuter line for women" today - or any mix of those words. And when I Googled "Levi's commuter line for women" (with quotes) only 151 results came up (without quotes and what came up was a few new blogs but lots of old blogs wondering when the line for women would finally appear). I know 151 results might seem like a lot, but trust me for the launch of a new line from one of America's most historically iconic brands, it's not.

(If you'd rather listen to this story rather than read it click the above link from SoundCloud)

Anyone remember what happened when Target collaborated with Missoni to bring a Missoni designed cruiser out? To remind myself I Googled Missoni bike for Target and come up with 170,000 results (when I put the term in quotes I get 1,700 results - and fascinatingly the #1 piece is a blog I wrote in 2011 for Bikeable Communities).

Levi's likes to use Tumbler for their promoting and they do have a page for the commuter line - but not a Tumble just for the new women's line. Hmmm. I finally found the promotional video by reading another blog (which now I'm having a hard time locating so I apologize for not giving them credit - I will when I find it). In the video's notes there are several other people having a hard time finding more details besides me so I don't feel too alone.

I do like the video above (though of course the helmet pro folk will not). I like that these women are not simply models but obviously women who ride - but I want to know the story of these women. I so hope you'll be telling them. Inspire me Levi's. I want to know their stories just as much as I want to know that the jeans are water and dirt resistant and have reflective fabric at certain points. Inspire me Levi's. Or is that part of the strategy? Levi's will you slowly share parts of your rider's stories so we're more intrigued? (And will someone explain to us why the women's jeans are $30 more than the men's even though they don't include the cool U lock holder on the back?)

So Levi's while we wait to see what more unfolds I'd like to introduce you to a woman you'd be wise to include on your women's commuter line model team. Her name is Mary Anne Aguirre and she is a single mom, cyclist, advocate and member of the kick ass Boyle Height group Ovarian Psycos Cycles group in Los Angeles. This video in celebration of Women's History Month (March!) + a music video for the song Mujer Soy by local band Las Cafeteras + a look at the very busy day of Mary Ann.