6 min read
A couple of months back I was scrolling through Instagram and came across this niche looking lifestyle / cycling brand, Grand Rappel.
The brand looked like it was on to something. It had style, simplicity, minimalism with a kick of modernism and a slight classic touch.
I could tell by looking at their current communications the brand has the potential to make some kind of movement in the market for every day cyclists.
I pinged a message over to Alex (founder), just to show some appreciation for the brand, and be supportive of what they intend to do for the everyday-cyclist segment. One conversation lead to another, and I was lucky enough to receive one of their first products that will go to market this September/October.
The Bamboo Tee
Super soft, super sustainable, super smart and sits on the body in a loose yet comfy manner. If you didn't know, bamboo is antibacterial and hyperalogenic. well... you do now.
What this basically means is, you're going to look good, and not smell like sh*t when you rock up to your intended destination (AKA The Pub or the regular coffee spot)
I had the pleasure of meeting up with Alex a couple of weeks ago to discuss how the brand is to evolve and where they see themselves in the near future.
Not that I can discuss their future plans, but all I can tell you is that they are a bunch of smart guys will a hell of a lot of ideas. I firmly believe the casual cyclist market will start to incrementally change. As I discussed with Alex, It's not just about being sustainable, it's about connecting your brand to the future. As much as we have lost the meaning of purpose, I firmly believe Grand Rappel and a few other brands in the production industry are nailing it.
So what does Grand Rappel mean? Well, in French Grand means big and Rappel means recall or reminder. So once again the GR team are spot on with their ever so simple branding. It's almost like the brand is reminding you to stay safe (UV reflective details), be comfortable (bamboo cotton mix) and look rather good when cycling (simple design).
As sustainability is becoming ever so "popular" amongst brands, it's quite clear that newer ventures such as Grand Rappel, have their core values set from the get-go.
The Bambo Tee has a variety of simple features that make it such an attractive garment to own.
1. The reflective non-obtrusive attractive UV logo with some meaning behind it. I'm only guessing most of us don't want to cruise about (in style) with a high vis vest on, or some kind of light up equipment attached to us. Let alone carry around extra equipment when out socialising. Whilst riding at night the UV logo back & front acts as a natural reflector. You're bound to be in a safer position rather than wearing just any ol tee.
Alex laid it out quite clearly for me. If you flip the logo on its side you'll be able to make out the chain stay and seat stay tubes where they meet the cassette. It's simple once you can see it.
As the brand is quite minimal and has been designed for purpose, functionality and aesthetics, you'll be able to make out a mountain with a rising sun behind it. This is where the Japanese element of the brand hits home, as It's almost a representation of the sun rising above Mount Fuji. You can clearly tell, the gents have put some thought into the brand from multiple perspectives.
2. We've all had those bike journeys where we arrive at our destination pretty much dripping in sweat. Well, I can tell you now, after wearing the tee for three days straight it smells as if I've just taken it out of my draw for the first time. (note: I don't do this with all my tee's) The bamboo cotton mix possesses a series of properties that keep the sweat and smell at bay. Bamboo is known for being able to wick away your body temperature at the norm. Ok, so you obviously get a little hot when cycling, but it's nothing the tee can't handle.
Not to mention it is a massively sustainable crop to grow (from the grass family). It doesn't require irrigation and once cut crops can regrow within 3 to 5 years and rarely needs replanting. Little to no chemicals are ever used when growing bamboo. Its production into fibre leaves a smaller carbon footprint than most other materials. Anything made from a cotton based fabric, can be made using bamboo.
3. It's only right that we're all kind to our skin, so the Grand Rappel team have thought long and hard about creating a product that won't cause any discomfort when wearing it. As mentioned earlier the bamboo t-shirt is hypoallergenic, meaning it's an item of comfort for even those with sensitive skin.
All in all, the Bamboo T-shirt hits the nail on the head for me, and I'm sure it is the first of many from the innovative bunch at Grand Rappel.
Note: If you're looking for something more sustainable than cotton, bamboo isn't one to be looked over. I'd keep my eye out for more bamboo orientated products.
A big thanks to my brother Olly Hooson @Olvh for the quickfire shots whilst we were out n about on what I can only call an extremely caffeinated adventure.
That's it from me, have a goodn people