If you're looking for flattering, feminine - but not girly - road kit that functions great on those long days in the saddle, then Fondo may be for you.
This small brand is the product of three visionary women from Melbourne, Australia. Anna, Kate and Emma had a simple goal: to produce comfortable, high-quality and stylish cycling apparel to inspire you to perform your best.
Fondo set about achieving this by partnering with Italy's leading manufacturer of cycling clothing. They've also got a bright and active social media following, which is what caught my attention. The fun and passion for women's cycling that they portray online is authentic, and just want we love to see.
We decided to put their stunning Confetti kit to the test, to see if the creators have managed to combine function and flattery.
When I received my Fondo package, there wasn't much to it. I tore into the small flat package to reveal the brightly coloured Confetti kit inside.
Taking the bib shorts and jersey out of the packaging, I could see how it was possible to keep the package so small and neat. The material is so soft, and so thin. As I mainly ride a mountain bike, where kit is much baggier and bulkier, I was apprehensive about 'Hulking' out of it.
The laser cut sleeves and cuffs are almost seamless, and the silky smooth feel reflects a high-quality standard of manufacturing. At first touch, the padding inside the bib shorts seemed well cushioned and appeared to have been carefully inserted into the garment without evidence of any chafe worthy seams.
So it looked great, was vivid in colour and it appeared to be well made, albeit thin. How would it fair on the bike?
On Test: Confetti Bib Shorts and Jersey
I tested the Fondo kit on a sunny and breezy 25km loop around local country roads.
Road kit like this is, admittedly, a little new to me. After pulling what can only be described as contorted yoga moves to wiggle myself into the bib shorts, they felt snug once on. This is owing to the race-fit cut which is claimed to be supportive, comfortable and flattering to the body - and once on, the comfort element of that sentence rang true.
The bib shorts are made from high performance compression Lycra. This, coupled with laser precision cutting, provides a seamless and elegant finish to the kit.
The Confetti jersey is made from a high wicking jersey material which was snug with a discrete full length zip and slightly longer than average sleeves, which I liked. The jersey is fitted with 3 rear cargo pockets for your essentials and the well finished cuffs and waist line are slightly elasticated to prevent any slipping.
Cycling on a warm day was no effort at all with Fondo's kit. I didn't feel suffocated by the tight fit, as the material stretched and moved with me, and air was able to circulate throughout the breathable fabric.
The Italian chamois did a great job for providing comfort throughout the ride, and with the well constructed bib shorts, nothing moved or slipped into unwanted areas. The wide straps felt comfortable without any pinching or digging in at all.
This uniquely thin and soft performance material had given me reservations about its durability and comfort, however in practice, these reservations were quashed.
Fondo have done a brilliant job of producing high-quality technical cycling wear for women with a number of eye-catching designs to choose from.
Admittedly, we Brit's suffer with unpredictable and sometimes volatile weather, unlike our Aussie counterparts. Fondo's kit is great for fair weather riding, and quick sprints around the track, it may require an additional base layer and arm warmers to withstand our climate.
Sizes: X.Small - Large
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