current obsession: colorful bike rims

Snow may have officially started falling in Brooklyn, but I’ve still got summer colors on the brain, namely in the form of brightly colored bike rims. I’m still such a bike-riding novice that when I first started seeing these around town, I assumed they were some sort of extra layer people snapped on to decorate their bikes. Turns out it’s just the rim, which you can get in nearly any color you want these days. As the fixie craze went into full swing over the past year or two, these colorful rims started popping up everywhere, and I was always running around like an idiot trying to snap pictures of them. Neon colors stop me in my tracks, so spotting electric yellows, oranges and blues on people’s tires has been a highlight of the past few months. My bike doesn’t quite work with this look, but if I ever end up selling my bike and getting a new frame, that sucker will definitely have neon frames. Orange and lime green, hopefully. Until then, I wanted to share some of my favorite examples from around the web. I love seeing how trends (neon hues) pop up in all sorts of fun places at once. xo, grace

Images above via (clockwise from top left) Zimbio, Zykle Fix, Cool Things and Jelly Bean Bikes

Image via Road Warrior Bicycles

Image via

More colorful bike rims continue after the jump . . .

Image via Blue Lug at Flickr

Image via Fixed Gear View

Image via Corina Bermudez (via Urban Outfitters)

Image via Himy Syed on Flickr

Image via Third Rail Design Lab

Image via DTLA Bikes

  1. Emily says:

    LOVE! Proud to live in Grand Rapids, Michigan, home of Velocity rims!

  2. I’m obsessed, too! I’m working on converting my old yellow Panasonic road bike into a fixed gear and I’m totally going to put colored rims on it!

  3. Lizzie says:

    I DIYed mine by painting the white walls of my tires hot pink… you should too!

  4. Elizabeth says:

    Check out if you want colorful bikes – they build all their bikes custom, so you can pick the color of EVERYTHING – chain, rims, frame, headset, hub… I actually read this post expecting to see them! More great colorful bike pics on their tumblr, too. Based in my lovely San Francisco – but they will ship anywhere in the world! I don’t have my own yet but I’m saving my pennies…

  5. Meghan says:

    YES! Love! Velocity rules Emily! I used to live in GR and have had friends that work at velocity! I have hot pink velocity rims myself.

  6. Karen says:

    How fun! Seems like it’d be great for safety as well. If it caught your attention, it may also catch a driver’s attention so the cyclist gets noticed. I have not seen these in San Fran yet but something tells me now that I see your post, I will notice them everywhere. If you like color and like riding, consider wearing unique arm warmers….practical and fun. I get comments at every light when I wear them :)

  7. Christie says:

    Another fantastic custom bike company is based in Richmond, VA – where you can also custom the color of every aspect of the bike for a FRACTION of the cost of most companies. They will ship anywhere in the US and Canada as well! Check them out here:

  8. ingrid says:

    In Amsterdam these beautiful rims would be a “Please, Steal My Bicycle” request.

  9. Katie says:

    Maybe something like this will happen when I get my 1950s Schwinn back up and running. It is such a great old bike!

  10. maggie says:

    Urban Outfitters teamed up with Republic bikes, I have the Aristotle and love it. cant beat turquoise rims, and a pink chain on a putty colored frame! It is like an ice cream shop bicycle!

  11. Jessica says:

    LOVE them but can’t seem to do it since we’ve had 3 bikes stolen so far!

  12. Velocity wheels and rims are Australian. Credit where credit is due.

    1. Grace Bonney says:


      their american headquarters are in michigan, i think that’s what she was referencing.


  13. Oh my gosh, I’m afraid I’m with you about the neon, Grace….stops me dead in my tracks too, lol….

    These bikes are dope! I recently spent a week in Montreal visiting family with my husband, and was delighted to find out that they have a ‘common bicycle’ program there much like that of Amsterdam ~ you can borrow common bicycles everywhere and ride for a 1/2 hour free. EVERYONE rides bikes there, and it was so fun to see a colorful variety of custom rides too. Seems to be what all the cool kids are doing these days. *wink*


  14. BAHHHH says:


    1. Grace Bonney says:


      I wish you would.


  15. Björn says:

    I’m sorry, bush these are horrible bikes altogether – cheap Chinese bikes, components and hey-look-at-me!-colors (which clearly work..). I know it’s all in the eye of the beholder, but (I) see it as some infants picking out all the bright coloured stuff out of the IKEA folder, when moving in together.
    When time goes by they see what they did wrong, start saving up and slowly transform their interior into something more stylish. They see how ‘subtle’ is the way to go; they didn’t see anything special about a Barcelona chair, but over time..

    Don’t get me wrong, I’d rather see someone riding a brightly coloured bike, than a car, but that’s not the point now.

    Read/look into it a bit more and you’ll end up loving a bike like this a lot more:

  16. mims says:

    THANK YOU for showing a photo of a bicyclist wearing a helmet! A good friend died in a minor bike collision hitting her head on the curb. It could of been avoided had she been wearing a helmet. Safety before fashion.

  17. laruan says:

    ooo, i have a republic bike. the crew at republic rocks and were super sympathetic when the first one was stolen & hooked me up a second time. highly recommend one for an inexpensive, but practical bike for commuting to work, esp in nyc!

  18. Jenny says:

    These are perfect for combatting the onset of gloomy mid-autumn New York. Thanks, Grace!

  19. bikerchick says:

    nice collection of pix. A little bike anatomy lesson for you since your description is a bit confusing. Tire goes on the (neon) rim. Add spokes and hub to = Wheel. Wheel attaches to the frame. Frame holds brakes, cranks, derailleurs, handlebar stem and seat post.

  20. Traci OSteen says:

    I love my Mercier Kilo TT Stripper that I got from I changed out my rims and several other components and I get compliments every where I go. The bike arrived super fast, I would recommend them for track bikes for sure.

  21. Lauren Farris says:

    Love this! This makes me want to go get a new bike just so I can own some if these. It reminds me of a photo I once saw of a bike with a rainbow spectrum of paint swatches stuck in the spokes. It created a mesmerizing spin of colors when the wheels turned! This is so much more practical though!


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