When we set off on a bike ride in 2010, barely 6 months after we had met, little did we know where it would take us. In any sense.
We spent a year riding over 10,000km through the Americas, an adventure that would change our lives forever. You can read more about it here.
* * *
At the end, in Argentina, we got engaged. In 2012, we launched VeloVixen - inspired equally by our reaffirmed love of cycling and by the problems Liz encountered finding great clothing for our trip. Today, our two cycling-mad young daughters are living testament of the power of cycling!
Launched in 2012, VeloVixen has grown to become the leading specialist in women's cycling kit.
Aside from the kit, we're a hub for women's cycling more broadly, thanks to our popular social media presence, plus our burgeoning VeloVixen Women's Cycling Chat Group.
Beyond that, we've been able to build VeloVixen on solid principles from the outset - and standing by them makes us a little bit different.
How? This is our Top 10 guiding list of principles:
1. Quality first
We've built our reputation by offering a range full of exciting, fun, beautiful and elegant items. But before we even get to how they look, we insist that the quality of each product's design and finish is tip-top.
2. 'Ladies first'
We believe we're unique in handpicking our range entirely from the female cyclist's perspective. Yes, some products work well for men too - but the focus is always on women.
3. Look after customers properly
We've all been left banging our head on the desk in frustration at being badly treated by a company. We never want to be one of those. We aim to treat every customer as we'd want to be treated ourselves: with respect, efficiency, honesty and common sense. This may not be the fastest way to get rich, but it does allow us to look ourselves in the mirror
4. Look after suppliers properly
We make every effort to deal with every one of our suppliers, distributors and colleagues with the same ethos as we look after our customers.
5. Don't just cycle, recycle
We recycle responsibly the packaging that our stock travels to us in, and choose environmentally friendly packaging in which to send the goods to you.
6. Love responsible manufacturers
We give preference to manufacturers who can prove that their use of materials is environmentally responsible.
We continue to encourage all the suppliers and factories that we deal with to use the most environmentally responsible packaging possible.
We avoid companies where there is any hint of abuse of staff or counterparties, or where there we pick up any sniff of environmental violations.
7. Love smaller companies
We try to favour smaller manufacturers doing things 'the right way' and raising their game to compete with established players; we want to maximise the proportion of UK-based companies that we work with.
8. Get out and ride
We 'eat our own cooking' by cycling to work (on all but the most extreme days!), and by using and testing our own equipment on an ongoing basis.
9. Always wear a helmet
Although we understand the arguments for not wearing a helmet, we personally feel that cyclists should always choose to wear helmets - why wouldn't you reduce the risks if the only reason not to is vanity?
10. Take care of cycling's reputation
We promote responsible cycling that leads to good relations with other road users - ie. not cycling on pavements and not jumping red lights.