Cycling on the road for a woman can be intimidating and dangerous. We all know that on or off the bike, street harassment is a daily reality for most women.
This is where this group of awesome women come in. They are called House of Astbury, a bad ass cycling brand from East London with an amazing look and a riot grrrl heart.
Their punk-inspired style creates awesome, subversive and safety conscious cycling wear for when you’re hitting the road.
All the company’s designs are printed in super reflective ink, to keep you visible and safe when you’re on the road. They also feature in-your-face anti-harassment messages.
“We were inspired by our own experience of sitting round the kitchen table together, talking about street harassment” says co-founder Kempen. “It seemed like every day one of us was coming in saying ‘this twat said this to me on the way home.’ We’ve taken this on with two themes in our designs.”
The thunder thighs design is taking on body image. “We’ve taken a playground jibe and turned it around. Athletic women should have muscular and strong thighs, and it’s not an insult.”
“The ‘eyes on the road’ design does exactly what it says, making a statement on street harassment that we all encounter every day.”
The company is based from founders Ester van Kempen, Ren Aldridge and Liepa Kuraitė’s East London house, which they share together.
It seemed like every day one of us was coming in saying ‘this twat said this to me on the way home’
“We all have different backgrounds in active wear, printing or cycling. One day we realised that we could just make the cycling clothes we wished we could find in shops, then we realised that other people wanted them too.”
We love House of Astbury’s designs and think they are exactly the kind of active wear that shops should be full of, but to make that a reality the company needs your help!
“We want to make a large run of the leggings,” says Kempen. We could have scraped the money together from friends and family, but instead we’ve decided to put the idea out there on KickStarter and see what we can raise.”
The House of Astbury Kickstarter page, which is well on its way to reaching its target, is a necessity for the girls to manufacture their clothing and spread their message.
“We want to be a campaigning brand” says Aldridge. “We don’t just want to make clothes. We want to make a difference and we want to be a sustainable company that doesn’t use sweatshops.”
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