Photo: Katie Panzer
Bekah Long sold unique vinyl chalkboard decals at the previous Craft Lake City festivals, but this year she’s moving forward with a new crafting venture called Whim. A clever acronym for “Wheels In Motion,” Whim features handmade bicycle seat covers and tool rolls designed by Long with the help of her boyfriend, Jon Glover.
After a trip to Amsterdam earlier this year, Long was inspired to broaden her crafting horizons. “It’s mind blowing how many bicycles were there,” she says. “Because they’re always on their bikes and they have leather seats, they just put shower caps or plastic bags on them. I thought [a bicycle seat cover] was something that would add pizazz. There’s a huge bike scene in Salt Lake right now, so I thought I’d take a stab at it and see if I could come up with something that would let people show their personalities a little more than they already can on their bikes.”
Wanting to find a material that was waterproof, durable, inexpensive and cruelty-free, Long experimented first with oilcloth, but found it difficult to sew with. “Then I came across laminated cottons, which are still waterproof, they come in a ton of prints, they’re easy to sew and they work perfectly,” she says. Whim’s cruiser-size seat covers work much like fitted shower caps for your saddle and come in a variety of prints, though she is open to customizing. “I’m madly in love with houndstooth, I think it’s the best print that’s out there, but I may have something else, like polka dots, that everyone else thinks is great,” she says. Whim’s waterproof tool roll is priced well under the hundred-plus price tag that comes with a leather Brooks tool roll, and is just as handy, complete with straps to tie under your saddle or handlebars.
Plans to expand the accessories Whim offers are already underway—Long is currently working on a seat cover pattern to fit a Brooks saddle for fixed gears and hopes to merge Spell It Out Designs, her vinyl decal venture, with Whim for more unique bicycle accessories.
Ride on down to Craft Lake City on August 13 at the Gallivan to see Whim in action, and keep an eye out for the upcoming Etsy shop. Those interested in Long’s chalkboard decals can still find them online at etsy.com/shop/spellitoutdesigns.