November 02, 2016
Via their flagship store in Islington, Freddie Grubb is an artisanal bicycle building brand offering a range of contemporary and practical two wheelers. Designed and built for use in urban environments, their range of bicycles are constructed from high quality steel and components bearing nothing of the arbitrary. Primarily a bicycle store, the stylish Islington outlet beautifully hosts a complimentary range of lifestyle and distinctly design orientated goods.
The brand name directly refers to Frederick. H Grubb, or less formally, Freddie Grubb; a significant figure of early 19th century cycling. Grubb pedalled his way to stardom in the 1912 Stockholm Olympics, one of the earliest of UK cycling triumphs. He took silver in both of only the two available disciplines, a poignant success. Freddie Grubb was a pioneering figure amongst the sport.
An adaption of their heritage inspirations, the brand is positioned as modern contemporary. Applying selective elements from the performance racing bikes of Grubbs era, the design of their modern rides are free from the unnecessary whilst yielding urban usability. Elegantly constructed from steel, this forgiving material choice traditionally trumps the characteristics of modern alternatives. “Nothing quite rides like steel”. Despite its extra weight, the steel dampens the vibrations of the road bearing a softer and more distinctive ride. Post fabrication, each frame is expertly powder coated in Peckham by local specialists. Reminiscent and rich, racing colours of reds, greens and blues inevitably stem from a distant automotive UK past. Considered details such as internal cable routing omit clutter on the outside of the frame. Primarily a protective measure, this feature conceals the cables inside the steel frame tubing. The enclosed rear hub drive-train yields comparable cleanliness to that of a single speed whilst offering the practicality of three gears for the urban rider. It’s from these decisive details that the understated aesthetic of their bikes is uplifted. De-cluttered, exempt from the unnecessary and lustrously protected in appealing colours of powder coat; Freddie Grubb bicycles are equally fashionable as they are a mode of urban transportation.
In their approach to their bicycles, Freddie Grubbs’ composition and refined social rhetoric has rightfully attracted a creative clientele. Inside the Islington outlet is an array of curated lifestyle goods, geared towards the design conscious and cycle minded customer. UK made saddles by Brooks accompany Glasgow watch brands Paulin and Instrmnt. Examples of European design include interior pieces such as seating by Paulo Mendes da Rocha and minimal sound system speakers by Vifa.
By foot or by bike, if your path leads you near Islington we trust a visit via the Freddie Grubb shop will be on your route. In the meantime you can check out their social channels and their website using the links below.
We’d personally like to thank Sam for his time.
Freddie Grubb Wesbite
NATIVE is a blog series intended to showcase select brands who implement product manufacture here in the UK. Admittedly, not all aspects of every product can be made here, however we are most interested in those that can.
UK production has changed dramatically over the decades. Like every industry, embracing change is vital, not just to survive but to thrive in conjunction with social, economic and technological advancement.
Recognition of businesses, old and new, that implement outright or even partial local production is something we are genuinely passionate about. As designers, it is our belief that people should know more about how, why and where great products are made in the UK.
NATIVE is our way of sharing this information.
"Every contrivance of man, every tool, every instrument, every utensil, every article designed for use, of each and every kind, evolved from very simple beginnings."
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