feel good . do good . look good — cycling

Man’s Urban Cycling Jacket

March 27th, 2009

men man cycling bicycling jacket coat reflective DIY

men man cycling bicycling jacket coat reflective DIYFor the last year we’ve been hunting for an urban cycling jacket for a man. We had many criteria: light color, ease in the shoulder, amenities for cyclists – some of which had to be compromised in order to buy a jacket off the rack.

men man cycling bicycling jacket coat reflective DIYWe found a good start at a Christmas-time Orvis Warehouse Sale for . The fit isn’t perfect but it makes a good prototype. It has working buttonholes on the sleeves, which makes me very happy! It has a Norfolk jacket pleats allowing more reach and a double vent back, which is easier on a saddle.

I bought 3M Scotchlite reflective tape and piping. Now it’s time to make this jacket reflective! My husband just wants a swath of reflective tape along the waistband, but that’s not enough of a challenge for this crazy lady. Have any of you seen particularly clever examples of subtle and transformable conspicuity? (yes I know that’s something of an oxymoron)

DIY cycling jacket in actionHere’s what I’ve done so far:
1). Added tape along the inner edge of the cuffs such that when he folds them back there is reflection.
reflective tape cycling jacket bicycle safety

2). Added tape along the underside of the collar, so that when he stands it up there is reflection.
reflective cycling coat
We both want some kind of reflection along the back of the coat, and just differ in how to accomplish this. Some ideas include:

  1. Just sew some tape on there already! (owner of the coat’s idea).
  2. Add a back off triangle to the center vent back. It could snap up hidden into the coat when not in use and unsnap down below the flap when he’s riding.
  3. Similar to above, but using 3MScotchlite, a flap on the back that was a few inches and folded up into the jacket and folds down to reveal a reflective strip.
  4. Add some more subtle reflective cord along the seam lines of the shoulder gussets and down along the vents, I’d like to add piping but Orvis did too good a job of sewing it closed. I would also appliqué a piping-like stripe of 3MScotchlite along the sleeve seams for side visibility.
  5. Sew along various seam lines with reflective, but not metallic, thread (I’ve never seen such a thing, just heard about it, seems it’s used on EMT’s coats)
  6. Add a soft elastic reflective belt which comes out of the front pockets and clips in back when he wants to be reflective.
  7. Add a center back pocket (like in a jersey but with an invisible zipper) , the doing of which I would outsource to a tailor. If we did that I could add a blinky hanger and store the blinky in that pocket.
  8. Add screen printing with EZ Print Reflecto.
  9. Other ideas you might share with us?

We’d really love your feedback on this project!

One Response to “Man’s Urban Cycling Jacket”

  1. vi Says:

    Check out materials used in reflective garments such as illumiNITE: http://www.illuminite.com/

    Garments can be super bright when a light shines on them but can look otherwise “normal.”

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