My wife rides a stylish and functional Pashley Princess Sovereign. I’m pretty sure it’s the only one in the city and it gets lots of admiring glances and comments wherever we go. Surprisingly, she tells me that many of the comments are directed not at the bike, but specifically at her wicker basket. There’s something about a bicycle basket filled with groceries or flowers that always seems to make people smile (I happen to particularly like the baguette/wine bottle look myself ;-) ). Riding with her everyday I’ve come to appreciate the convenience and practicality of baskets – when you’re on a quick errand run they’re perfect for tossing in loose items, a few groceries, or a library book.
If you think you might like to try out a basket, REI is now stocking Peterboro bike baskets from New Hampshire. They look great, the prices are very good, and I like the fact that they’re handmade in the U.S.A. Between the three sizes you should be able to get a fit on almost any bicycle (you’ll want to look carefully at the measurements to make sure you have clearance).
[Thanks to the Chic Cyclist for the Peterboro tip.]