Why We Ride: Petra Langerova
“We’re not just biker girls, we have work, lives, family, kids. Everybody is busy but when you fall in love with motorcycles you find a way to work it in. It doesn’t mean you have to give up everything else to hop on a bike.”
Petra Langerova fell in love with riding because of an awesome colleague/neighbor, turned lifelong friend, introducing her to the world of wind whipping through her hair. This awesome neighbor is yours truly, the creator of Atelier Volant, Catherine Wales.
“We were the perfect riding pair - me being the ‘goofy’, slightly impulsive one - and Catherine being the analytical and mechanical problem solver. We balanced each other out perfectly.”
Before becoming riding companions, the pair would hang out on one another’s front steps and kick around creatives, ideas, and dreams. Their bond grew through sharing stories from their childhood, some of their fondest and most challenging memories, and their symmetrical connection to the fashion industry.
“Catherine is a special person - brilliant, really. I don’t know many other women that have such an exquisitely diverse set of attributes. She is goal driven, technical, organizational, design savvy, and creative, while being a caring soul with a curiosity for life itself. She’s so smart - it only took her a couple of days to figure out how to ride while standing her ground that you don’t have to change your identity to fit around biking.”
Finding Her Speed
The two women’s adventures brought them flying along the streets of New York, giving them an undeniable sense of freedom. One of the many powers of micro commuting is whizzing past parked vehicles and long lines of cars all stuck in the inevitable traffic jams of the city.
“I felt such a rush being able to get around without having to take the subway or pedal a regular old bike. This new freedom came from pushing myself outside my comfort zone and trying something new, something I could practice getting better at. It was completely liberating.”
It didn't take too long before Petra was pushing past another feat, traveling the coastline with her friend from San Francisco. Renting bikes, the friends journeyed along some of the most famous roadways.
“I remember the trip like it was yesterday. It was epic. This was my first time really connecting with nature in a different way. When you are driving a car, you only see things through the frames of your windshield and windows. On a bike there’s nothing surrounding you; complete immersion in the world around you. You can hear the grass swooshing along the roadside - you feel like you could reach out and run your hands through it. It’s really beautiful seeing, feeling, and experiencing nature and the curves of the road.”
Atelier Volant - The Evolution of Micro-Commuting
“One day, after leaving our bikes in Brooklyn, we came back to find mine stolen. It was the end of riding motorcycles for me - I just never replaced it. But it was just the beginning for Catherine. Biking clicked with her; it was a natural fit. Art and craftsmanship are two driving factors in everything Catherine chooses to do with her life. She told me about her idea of creating clothing for riders. Cathy had this idea that there should be high-quality clothing that serves and protects but also fluctuates with the real life of riders. Carefully crafted clothing integrated with technology - an idea that could bridge the gap of almost forgotten crafting techniques and design with new age wearable tech. With everything being removable, customizable, to accommodate life on the road to the office.”
Though Petra no longer owns a motorcycle, she does ride a scooter to get around town. “Micro-commuting is convenient, fun, and so much better for our environment. And with AV’s yoga pants, I have never been so comfortable doing it!”
It’s no secret, Catherine Wales is an inspiration to many - friends, fellow riders, fashion designers, and for a changing US culture. The innovations she created first in her mind, then on paper, have come to fruition. Atelier Volant is born and is ready to serve motorcycle enthusiasts and mico-commuters like Petra around the world. See how style, comfort, and personalized protection serves you.