Levi's® thinks only men have fun on bikes

by - 1:17 PM



Now, I am not criticizing, I actually think the line is pretty cool and well thought out.  When I first saw it I thought “WOW”!  But that feeling quickly deflated as I watched the well dressed men riding their bikes through the city, my eyes searching the video for a girl on bike. 

“Well, there's got to be a women's video next.” I thought

Strangely the video ends without a mention or sign of the female gender anywhere on a bicycle.


Even stranger, the senior designer is a woman, see her interview at GQ here. 



Intrigued I went to the Levi’s site and sure enough, plenty of fashion for women, but no commuter line.  Let’s take a few steps back, I grew up riding my bike and I see myself growing old riding my bike, when I have a choice about getting somewhere, every time I would choose the bike over the car, even if the weather isn't that agreeable.  Being on a bicycle gives me joy and I have a shed full of them ready for any occasion and one, my favorite, is a three-speed with a basket.  It’s not the fastest or the prettiest in the shed, but, I love it.  It’s the bike I take for tooling around the town center picking up pastries at the bakery and visiting a friend, it’s the bike I use to go to the elementary school for conferences or events when I know the parking lot will be full, it’s the bike I use to ride with my youngest kid or shoot down the bike path to pick up groceries or stop at the farmer’s market.

On these occasions, I really don’t want to wear lycra, heck I don’t ever really want to wear lycra unless I’m going for a serious ride.  This then leaves me to roll up my pants or choose some items in my closet that I wouldn’t mind getting dirty but this isn’t how I always want to present myself.  Grocery store fine, but meeting teachers, dinner etc., I wouldn’t mind looking just as good as those guys in the Levi’s video.

I like the message that Levi’s is putting forth of sustainability and with the skyrocketing obesity rates what a great way to “normalize” bicycle commuting with functional, good looking clothing to get people to start thinking about bicycles to get around.  But, then they leave out half of the population, bummer.

So, I thought it was appropriate here to pull out some Photoshop for some "Photoshop Phashion" to create the women’s bicycle commuter line for them so they can see just how good it looks on the girls.  Someone’s got to do it; sheesh, don’t they have any women working for them that ride bikes - ever?


Let’s start with their Commuter 5-pocket pant.  I chose Red Ochre for this example but they've got other colors.  Levi’s® makes the men’s version with a utility waist band which is designed for u-lock storage; I like this feature in the men’s line but would consider taking it out for the girls because I don’t often see them carrying a lock in this manner.  This would mean less bulk around the waist and perhaps a cost savings for Levi’s.   The rest of the details on the pants are great like the fact that they are water and dirt resistant and made with stretch fabric and include some reflective tape on the interior cuffs. The missing detail?  Oh, yeah right, cuts to fit women’s bodies!  I slapped the men's profile pic onto a Levi's woman model so we could get a good look.  So, here are the pants with a higher waist to hide the rear end while riding and revealing the roll up reflective tape hidden when the cuff is down.  I know the shoes right?


I really like the commuter shirt they have made for the men and would consider buying one for my husband who practically lives on a bike.  It's super functional and all those little details that make it great for men can easily be included for women.  Here is one where I put a pocket on the back mimicking the men's utility pockets in a long and short version which I plucked right out of their women's shirt selection .  I chose a longer back shirt to hide the "tail" while riding.  See how easy it is Levi's?




To cover it all up on cool nights I picked the denim jacket from the men's line.  Again, great details with water and dirt repellent materials, utility pockets and length added where needed along with some reflection.
Levi's® Commuter Trucker Jacket

Back of men's jacket showing
lower back and reflective details
Here's my "photoshoped" modified version of one of their
women's jean jackets showing a longer back with side
and rear pockets and reflective details.  Looks good!
There would be only one detail I would add to the men's jacket, I think
Levi's missed a valuable spot for reflection on the underside of the collar.
As one of Levi's Senior VP's Erik Joule states in their press release on the line, "This product was born from innovation, classic American style and a personal passion for cycling - it's about designing product for people who ride bikes," let's not forget one thing Levi Strauss, girls ride bikes and want to look good riding them too. 

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