Beautiful Bicycles: Meet My New Bike!

Drum roll, please…

After a teaser several weeks ago, I’m happy to report that a new bike has finally joined the Dottie household:  A Velorbis Studine Balloon: designed in Denmark, made in Germany and sold in Chicago at Copenhagen Cyclery.

Rust-colored Schwalbe Fat Frank balloon tires, creamy white steel frame…

Integrated rear rack with briefcase hook…

Wheel lock, double kick stand, chain case…

Bell, comfy rubber grips…

3-speed Sturmey Archer internal hub…

Brooks saddle, rattan basket, fenders, all around super classiness…

Alas, no integrated lights, skirt guard or fancy leather grips, but that’s what keeps the price at a reasonable $1,295.

I want to be perfectly clear about my acquisition of this bike.  I did not buy the bike, but it is not a tester or a freebie.  Rather, it’s bartered using good old-fashioned economics.  Companies advertising on LGRAB usually pay a certain amount per month.  Instead of money, Copenhagen Cyclery is “paying” with a bike.  I view it as a fair exchange for something Copenhagen Cyclery wants (advertising) and something I want (a gorgeous bike).

I also want to be perfectly clear that the exchange includes nothing about my editorial content.  Copenhagen Cyclery will get an ad on the sidebar, nothing more.  There’s no agreement that I will talk up the shop or Velorbis or write about the bike.  Naturally, the bike will show up as part of my usual posting, just as my two other bikes show up, but I hope that you all will continue to trust that I have not turned into a corporate shill.

Incidentally, if other bike shops or companies are interested, Trisha is open to entertaining offers for an Abici or similar light and classy creature.  ;)

Now that all of that’s out of the way, we can focus on the real important stuff. Like, what should I name her? She reminds me of cream and sugar, a cafe au lait, but how does that translate to a name?

(p.s. Squeeee! New bike! :))

  • Carolyn I.

    Sweet bike!

    • Miss Sarah

      Congrats! What a wonderful new ride:) And creme goes with everything.

      I always thought Pashley should do something sweet for me after all the free advertising I have done for them. Plus, Copenhagen Cyclery is a wonderful shop run by excellent dudes. Their customer service and the quality of their product basically speak for themselves.

      I’m so jealous, but in the best way! Enjoy your new ride:)

      And remember to saw down the seat post…


      • Julie

        I ride a $250 Schwinn! I need a “bike sponsor!”

        Jealous. Jealous. Jealous.

  • chelsea

    ack!!! she’s gorgeous! totally jealous over here!!

    • Jennifer in Scotland

      Oh Dottie, it’s truly gorgeous! Here’s to many happy times with your new bike.

  • Angi

    Ah pretty bike.

    She looks like a Margaret to me…but I may be way off.

  • Annalisa

    WOW. Very nice!!!

    • Annalisa

      Hit Post too soon.

      Cafe au lait, huh? What about something like Sabine, Mathilde, or Veronique?

  • Lovely Bicycle!

    Congratulations on the new acquisition! The cream frame looks nice with the brown tires and I look forward to a comparison between to the Workcycles Oma!

  • Jennifer H.


  • Sara

    I love her! You two are a perfect match. To me, she could be a Juliet (playing off Verona).

  • Steve A

    It ought to be something wintery in honor of when it showed up.

  • Janice in GA

    Nice! Have fun with it!

  • Space Rider Gal

    Congrats Dottie! What a beautiful bike! I really love the color and the contrast with the tires is super cute.

    What about “Chantilly” ? It’s the name of a type of whipped cream flavored with vanilla and powdered sugar that is typical from France and and Spain.

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  • Doug

    Nice, very nice Dottie! New bikes are so much fun.

  • Brittany

    BEAUTIFUL. I am entirely jealous and want one.

    How about Blanche? Or maybe a name from this list:

    I think Chantilly is nice, as Space Rider Gal suggested.

    I really wish I could begin biking to and from work but I think my commute is just too long…the safest route (mostly on designated rail trails is 20.1 miles…the more direct route is 16 miles but goes through the worst parts of town (Traffic-wise and crime-wise.)

    What would you say is the longest reasonable distance for a commute to an 8-5 job?

  • Doohickie


    Does having another city bike mean you can convert ol’ Betty Foy into a drop-bar road bike? You could take a long ride in wintry Texas.

  • Doohickie

    That’s loop-frame version of the new Biria I got for Mrs. Doohickie. She hasn’t ridden since she was in 5th Grade and fell off a bike, breaking her kneecap, so she was particular about getting a bike that was as easy to board as possible. Your Velorbus is a bit higher end.

    • Thom

      Beautiful bike, you two look so good together!
      Can I suggest Gabrielle or Gifford(s)?
      Is that too politically insensitive?
      I suggest this only in her support, she is a fantastic woman.

  • donna

    I’d name her Margot

    • Traci

      Gorgeous bike!! That’s a sweet deal to trade advertising for a bike – I’d do that any day :)

    • Scott

      Score! I think you will find the dutch/balloon danish bike combo to be excellent!

      • Scott

        I suggest Phyllis, in honor of our resident danish bike store employee.

  • Nicola

    Wow, beautiful!

    I’m thirding Chantilly. Genevieve would be cute, though it’s nothing to do with the colour. The name Heidi makes me think of the Alps, and snow, and, y’know, white.

  • Ash

    Did you end up going 50cm or 54cm? Love the basket addition too!

  • Simply Bike

    Congratulations on the gorgeous new bike! Enjoy many many happy rides with her – you two look beautiful together already :)


  • Cheryl


  • Jennifer

    It’s gorgeous and I’m jealous! You lucky duck…

  • Amy

    Very pretty! I second Cheryl for Blanche! That’s exactly what I was thinking. :)

  • Richard Crawford

    Be careful with your fat franks – not the most puncture resistant – had to remove the lovely white pair on my Yuba Mundo after it got its 3rd puncture in a few months ….. Use tyre liner or slime tubes may help … but then your whole assembly is way lighter than a 45lbs bike with electric motor and 2 kids on the back …

  • Daniel Evans

    Congrats on the new bike Dottie! She is beautiful and classy. I would expect nothing less for you!

  • nicolas

    I submit Rustine. It means ‘tire patch’, but it sounds old-fashioned, like popular names from the 50′s, Christine or Martine. And it’s got ‘rust’ like those red tires. Pronounced with a ‘ü’.

    • Frits B

      Ah, you thought Chantilly was too lacey (the effect of a lot of rust).

      • nicolas

        Heh, kinda! More to advocate for the name: this is a solid bike (I own a Velorbis too) like Oma, but it looks more rugged than a classic omafiets, more fun too, with the colour scheme and the fat tires. I like “chantilly”; however, to me, the typical Chantilly would be a mixte with the classic French frame, a bike that would look/be lighter, airier, more precious. And I just like the way “Rustine” rolls off the tongue and lends itself to variations: “little Rustine”, “good ol’ Rusty”, etc.

        • Braxton Colagross

          Beautiful! I was expecting red.

      • E A

        total sweetness! when can i meet her?

    • Anne Hawley

      “Chantilly” was my very first thought, and I see that I was not alone! That is one whipped cream cream puff of a gorgeous bike!

  • Mr Colostomy

    I recognise the rack, it is the same one which came with my Danish DL-1. I assume the Velorbis logo is detachable so you could put a light there if you wanted. The briefcase clip is really useful, I use mine for carrier bags when I buy too much for my pannier at the shop, or for my D-lock when I can’t fit it in my pannier.

    I have the same Fat Franks on my Yuba too, but I’ve not had much trouble with punctures myself. They are a good trade-off between cushy and fast, and surprisingly good in the snow.

    Have fun

  • Nuresma

    Really nice! I love it.

    • neighbourtease

      No problems with punctures with my fat frank tires, either, and our NYC roads are crap at best. I find when I check their pressure on Monday mornings they’ve barely lost any pressure. Fwiw, I think they roll better at lower PSIs.

      Congratulations on your new bike!

  • velojoy

    Congrats on you new acquisition. Such an elegant ride!

    • Bill


      I am so glad you received this beautiful bike! You certainly deserve it with all the work you put into this blog – of which is a tremendous resource to us who enjoy bikes. I wish more vendors would send you free items to try and review. After all we readers are the real beneficiaries from your work. Thanks for you willingness to share your city biking experience with all of us!

      Atlanta, GA

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    • Gin

      Congrats! It’s lovely. I look forward to hearing how the ride compares to your other bikes.

      • Bill


        The bike is beautiful! What type of mirror do you have on this one? I always have trouble finding a mirror I like because it seems like most either what to fit on the bar end or are made for drop handlebars. I thought I would never say this but I really like the color of this bike.

        Atlanta Ga

  • Bill – Iowa City


  • Maureen

    She is awesome! I like “Blizzard”. ENJOY!!!

  • Karen Voyer-Caravona

    I need a deal like this! Hey Workcycles, I’ll be your blogger in the Southwest!

    Really lovely bike and the basket goes with it quite well.

  • Amanda Z from NYC

    SUCH a beauitful bike!

  • Red

    Great bike, tres chic, tres formidable..

    Good to see Sturmey Archer gears again. My first bike had them over 50 years ago.

    On a good day with a following breeze sometimes the 3 gears become 4.

    Bonne route!!

    • Vee

      I’ve been MIA and I come back to this lovely white bike. Yay you.

  • beany

    looks so gorgeous! Coco is the perfect name.

  • Kara

    Oh wow! It is a stunner. How exciting. I think a white/cream bike is so sophisticated. Can’t wait to hear of the new name and read about your adventures.

  • SM

    Oh, it’s beautiful! The bike and you look stunning together. Congratulations.

  • Peter

    Dottie, this is a beautiful bike. I don’t know you but can only assume from your posts that you are a very nice person. I don’t know the guys at the shop that traded this bike with you. I’m sure they are also very nice. The tone of this post is not anger it is more sadness. I have enjoyed reading your blog and have often been inspired by your stories. In fact, inspiration to keep riding when the weather is rough and my energy is low is precisely why I seek out blogs such as yours. I must admit though that I am worried about the intent of this transaction when I know how well your blog is followed. I guess I just get uncomfortable when this type of deal seems to be happening on other blogs I follow as well. It feels like I’m part of a clever advertising campaign. I’ve gotta think that the store knows you are recognizable and that it would help them more than just a sidebar advertisement to have you ride their bike around Chicago and likely have pictures of you riding it on the blog. Sorry, I’m trying to be nice and I’m sure I’ll get an earful from others here. I’m not calling you a shill, as you mentioned in your post, but I will likely stop following your blog.

  • Dottie

    Peter, thanks for your thoughtful comment.

    I gave this a lot of thought before accepting any advertising – the possibility that a reader would find me less credible. However, I am not someone who thinks that bloggers should work for free forever. With no company employing me to write about bicycling, the only way I can make (a tiny bit of) money is through advertising. The only difference between this arrangement and a typical advertising arrangement is that, in bartering, I skipped the currency middle man. I could have accepted cash from the bike shop and then bought the bike with it, but that would have been pointless. I actually am giving up some cash for the bike, as Trisha and I have arranged for her to keep a proportional amount of monthly advertising revenue in exchange for me getting the bike.

    I agree that this is clever advertising by Copenhagen Cyclery and I do not think that’s a bad thing. More companies will have to start embracing the online world, as newspapers and magazines dwindle, along with their advertising opportunities. That said, I feel pretty clever about this arrangment, myself, having scored a beautiful new bike based on my own writing on this little blog. I contacted Copenhagen Cyclery about advertising because I know and like the owners and love their products. I would not have entered into such an arrangement for a typical big brand bike, for example.

    Therefore, I don’t think I should feel bad for benefiting from the substantial time and money I put into writing this blog. I also have a demanding, non-profit-salary day job, but I set aside time every day for LGRAB. As long as I explain the situation fully, as I have here, I leave it up to readers to take from it what they will. I don’t think I could be more transparent if I tried. As you mentioned, someone is always free to not read the blog, although I value everyone in this community and would be sad about that.

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