Bespoked, the UK’s handmade bike show has been going since 2011. Since then, it has showcased a huge number of the incredible custom bikes and their makers, both from the UK and worldwide. It’s been an awesome thing to see.
But it became increasingly clear to those of us working with bikes outside of this high fashion, high money world, that we needed to show the public that there is another side to cycling. That there may just be a counterpoint to the meticulously made, the artisan, to the multiple thousand pound art bikes for riding around in lycra. And that it is just as awesome.
For 2017, we are going to show that other side of cycling.
Welcome to Besmirched, the Bespoked Fringe.
D I Y .
Completely free, completely grass roots.
The idea for Besmirched had been floating around in my head for a year or so. I’d always visited Bespoked, nerded out over the incredible bikes, but known that it didn’t represent the cycling that I was part of: we needed a fringe. I’d been lucky enough to be part of the last UK Bike Gathering in Oxford, where I’d felt the depth of the UK DIY bike co-op culture…
…The name came about on the front steps of my house, sharing a chilli with members of the Broken Spoke Co-op, who had cycled up to stay with me and see Bespoked. “What about calling it Besmirched?” That was it. We would make a Bespoked Fringe.
– Pi, Clandestine