Bike Shop – Pedal Chic

One need only speak with Robin Bylenga, founder and owner of Pedal Chic, for a minute to appreciate her commitment and passion for getting more women on bicycles.

One need only speak with Robin Bylenga, founder and owner of Pedal Chic, for a minute to appreciate her commitment and passion for getting more women on bicycles.

Pedal Chic is the first woman-owned bike store in the US to cater exclusively to women. The Greenville, SC, shop has created a space that welcomes women of all ages and abilities. Pedal Chic’s mission is to share cycling expertise and provide functional and fashionable bikes and active wear to get more women riding, whatever their style or riding goal.

Providing a unique layout and ambience for the store was important for creating an inviting environment for customers. Chandeliers, mannequins and a center floor runway make Pedal Chic feel more like a fashion boutique than your typical bike shop. The pretty scents that fill the air and elegant drapery adorning the change rooms make many women sigh when they walk in. “They say, ‘It’s a place for me,’” Bylenga said. “We wanted to avoid looking like an auto-parts shop. The challenge was making the space a respected bike shop without looking like a typical store to give women a better shopping experience.”

The result is truly one of a kind. After starting out as a lifestyle boutique, Pedal Chic is expanding to appeal to women who ride all styles of bikes including road, mountain and commuter bikes. The shop carries attractive cruisers and other bike genres from Nirve, Brooklyn Cruiser, Jamis, Bianchi, Linus, Public and Pashley plus a host of female-conscious lines of clothing and accessories. The repair shop is tucked in the back to keep the grease and grime out of view while providing a quick turnaround time of only a few days for many repair jobs. Mechanic R2 (another Robin) has developed a loyal following, with women from around the upstate area coming in to ensure that only R2’s skilled hands service their bikes.

Bylenga is working now to transform Pedal Chic from a store to a movement. Bylenga travels both locally and nationwide to speak on women’s cycling issues. To boost community involvement, the store hosts three types of rides a week. The popular Spin & Sip involves groups of 30 or more who arrive with bikes and beverages and cycle around nearby trails before ending their journey on the Pedal Chic outdoor patio. These rides are critical, Bylenga said, for building female riders’ confidence through the group dynamic. Family rides are also part of Pedal Chic’s continuing focus.

“Ultimately we want to see more women living on bikes,” said Bylenga. “If that happens, the chances of getting their children on bikes will increase, and that’s a big passion for us. It’s been incredibly rewarding to see women get back on bikes, some after 20 years, and not only improve their health, but do something that makes them genuinely happy. This is just the beginning.”

The Details

Address:

651 South Main Street, Greenville, SC, 29601

Website:

pedalchic.com

Phone:

864-242-2442

Bikes by:

Jamis, Linus, Public, Nirve, Bianchi, Pashley, Brooklyn Cruiser

Accessories from:

Po Campo, Girl Bike Love, Basil, Nutcase, Rockinoggins, Nantucket, Cruiser Candy, Knog, Bern, Topeak and others always added

Apparel from:

Club Ride, Terry, Skirtsports, Louis Garneau, Hincapie, Moxie, My Alibi, Sheila Moon, Primal Wear, Pedal Chic, Iva Jean

1 Comment

  • Erica Armstrong

    This is a fantastic idea and I wish all the best to Robin Bylenga. I am amazed at the lack of bicycle businesses that cater to women. Women cyclists are on the rise and, I feel, the businesses actively showing recognition of this trend are going to do well.

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