The bicycle: It possesses a classic form that has remained relatively constant for well over 100 years. When Maurice Garin won the inaugural Tour de France back in 1898, he did so on a bike that would not look incongruous today racked outside a coffee shop in any fashionable inner-city suburb. And it’s a form that has long been embraced by the design community; both for its aesthetic and functional properties.
With cycling currently enjoying its annual round of media attention, as the world’s best road cyclists compete for the maillot jaune (yellow jersey) at the Tour de France, we thought we’d pay our respects to the bike’s iconic form with a look at some of the more aesthetically respectful ways to display it.
The Bike Hook: Simplicity is at the heart of the bike’s enduring appeal, and it’s also at the heart of the Bike Hook from German design studio Fluo, which creates functional and long-lasting objects. The Bike Hook comes in oak and black walnut, with a brass or copper accent. You’ll need a suitably stylish – and solid – wall to affix it to, though, as they’re not recommended for plasterboard.
The Clug: The smallest and cheapest method on this list, the Clug is an inconspicuous solution for storing bikes. It allows you to stand your bike on its back wheel while the front wheel fits snuggly into the clip mechanism. While wall-mounted bikes certainly look best-displayed side-on at eye-level with the drive train exposed, the Clug offers a non-obtrusive solution for those without the requisite wall space to put their bike front-and-centre.
The Bike Shelf: It’ll hold your bike and anything else you might like to shelve. The Bike Shelf designer Chris Brigham, who owns and operates San Francisco-based furniture brand Knife and Saw, came up with the design for the Bike Shelf when he noticed many of his friends living in small apartments lacked a practical and stylish way to store their bikes. “I wanted to design something that kept bikes off the floor, but didn’t look like it belonged in the garage.” The answer was the Bike Shelf, which comes in either walnut or white oak.
The Tern Perch: This ingenious little rack has racked up a number of design awards since its inception. Manufactured from a single piece of aluminium and finished with rubber grips that cradle either side of a bike’s seat post, the Perch makes clever use of physics to do its job. There’s a nice irony in that Tern, which manufactures folding bikes designed to be stored in cupboards, has developed such an effective and thoughtful display mount.
The Iceberg: The most sculptural of the mounts on this list, the Iceberg, which is available in chestnut or burlwood, makes an interesting addition to your wall and, unlike other mounts, does not look lonely when it’s not holding something. It’s created by a company called Woodstick, which, as well as manufacturing wooden bike handlebars, offers a range of other equally unique bike mounts.
Read what Adam Scott, founder of FreeState, says about the importance of cycling and human cities here.