Cycling is one of Angélique Dupré’s greatest passions. This passion prompted her to start a community of cycling women in 2008. A few years later, this was expanded with a collection of cycling wear for women: Little Black Bike.
Angelique: ‘I felt that there was a lack: more and more women had been bitten by the cycling bug, but the market for cycling trips, events and cycling wear was not directed at women, or insufficiently if at all.’
First, there was an online community for women cyclists, for which Angélique Dupré organised cycling events and tours. Afterwards, the idea for a line of ladies’ cycling wear started to take concrete shape: Little Black Bike, based on the idea of the ‘little black dress’.
‘In 2010 and 2011 more and more women started to find their way to recreational cycling. The existing sports brands wanted to respond to this, but they launched collections with an overdose of pink and floral motifs. Very cliché. With Little Black Bike, I wanted to create a more original and stylish alternative.’
‘Little Black Bike is a collection of cycling wear designed by and for women. I surround myself with a team of creative, enterprising women. Our collective efforts result in a collection tailored to the wishes and needs of women. With a fit adapted to the female body, quality in every aspect of the business as a guiding principle and designs with a genuine sense of fashion. Moreover, Little Black Bike cycling outfits are created in Belgium and produced in Europe. We don’t make any compromises in this field. Each cycling outfit was given the name of a cycling woman; not a celebrity or a famous sportswoman but just an “ordinary” recreational cyclist. ‘These women are the source of inspiration for the collection,’ says Angélique. ‘That’s why I thought it would be nice to put them in the spotlight and share their story on the website. Visitors to the website can read the cycling story of Brave Barbara, Aspiring Andrea, Audacious Aliya, and many more, and can see the ladies in question posing in their cycling outfits.’
Over the past two years, Angélique has focused primarily on the launch of the collection and sales via the online shop. As a result, the cycling trips and events briefly disappeared into the background. But now she’s itching to pick up the thread again.
‘Therefore, Little Black Bike will therefore not only pull out all the stops with a new, extensive collection and a revamped online shop, but also with numerous events and cycling trips in 2020. I want to focus more on pop-up events, so that women can see and try on the collection in real life. The collection is also being expanded. There are 2 “Essential” cycling pants that can be effortlessly mixed & matched with every jersey in the collection. And there will also be an extra cardigan to keep you warm and dry on chilly spring days.’
The Little Black Bike diary will also feature more cycling tours. An overview of the plans for 2020 has already been published on the website.
‘I want more events and trips tailored to women cyclists. I have recently given birth to my second child and I am itching to climb back on my bike. Just like for many other women, I feel that cycling gives me time for myself. To recharge the batteries and clear my head. That is so important.’
‘What are my ambitions for Little Black Bike? I’d like to develop a children’s collection. As the mother of two young children, that idea has been in the back of my head more and more often. I am also dreaming of international growth. Right now, the collection is being sold mainly in Belgium and the Netherlands, but I also hope to build up an international reputation so we can receive orders from all over the world in the online shop. We shot the photographs for the previous collection of cycling apparel in New York. That was a first step towards international expansion. And it tastes like more,’ she says with a big smile.