Saturday, February 11, 2012

15 Swoonworthy Velo-Valentines

Just over a week ago, I announced a Give-away for Valentine's Day - inviting readers to submit bicycle-themed Valentines for a chance to receive a beautiful, bright red Bobbin Birdie. Over 70 submissions were made, and I have looked at and read them all at least twice. All were beautiful and thoughtful, and I sincerely thank everybody for sharing them. I would now like to present 15 Valentines that, with difficulty, have been selected as the final entries. They are numbered (in no particular order) and your feedback is welcome. While this is not an outright "readers' choice" vote, your selections will be taken into consideration in the final decision. Thanks for looking, and enjoy!

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1. "Be Mine" Submitted by Park Girl: "'The bicycle, the bicycle surely, should always be the vehicle of novelists and poets' - Christopher Morley".

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2. "Together We'll Go Far ... On Love & Bicycles." Submitted by Stephen Lee Ogden. 

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Bicroscopic Valentine (Commission-complete)
3. "Bicroscopic Valentine." Submitted by Jessi: "Portraits sourced from the Commons, Bobbin Birdie bike, and original photograph of silk threads under glass slide, taken with a Nikon 1970's microscope mount. Everything but the silk fibres  are halftoned, because that is how I roll."

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4. "Diamonds are a girl's best friend. But my valentine is a mixte." Submitted by Mindy: I wanted to draw a picture of my bike, because I do love my mixte! The text still works even if you're not familiar with the mixte/diamond frame thing (see what I did there?)."

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5. This evocative poem was submitted by Robin. 

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6. "A day with... is better than a day without..." There is another side to this card, and it is shown here.  Submitted by Willie Bailey. 

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7.  "Hip hoppin' & Bobbin' for you, Valentine!" Submitted by Julie: "My dog, Bonnie, is a little shy and eccentric, and is always the star of our "family" greeting cards. She was going to make a Valentine anyway, but she decided to go with a flashy Valentine theme in hopes of winning her dear mother, me, a pretty new Lady Bike." 

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8. "All I want to do is make tricycles with you." A collage submitted by Michelle B.

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9. "The story, context, high-res sharable files (including vector) for anyone who wants to have fun and make their own for someone can be discovered here." Submitted by nandapocentric.

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10. An embroidered Valentine! Submitted by yn0405: "My entry, inspired by the little Birdie"

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11. "The two things in this world that are true: my sturdy lugged frame and my love for you!" Submitted by LT: "When I read your latest post this morning I thought immediately of my favorite old family photo, so I added a few bits to the photo to make it a vintage-themed Valentine."

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12. A poem submitted by William B. The text reads:

"Said the front tire to the rear
Follow me; I’ll lead my dear.
Round and round we’ll roll together.
‘Cause when you push I steer better.
If miles from here the road’s not fair
We’ll just let out a little air.
I will not shimmy, I will stay true;
That is the promise I make to you.
At dusk, to emphasize our genders,
We’ll slip into some silver fenders.
Your tread is slick; your spokes are fine;
You’ll always be my valentine."

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13. "Sending you...  Love." Submitted by Margaret.

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14. "I wanna ride with you." Submitted by AinsleyW: "Happy Valentine's Day!! Here's my entry, designed specifically in the likeness of mine and my sweetie's bicycles."

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15. Submitted by Audrey W., the poem reads:

"true love

discouraging, tiresome
amassed frustrations
quick release–
escape
restore sanity?

true love, loyal to
youth, to health, to
the beating-
heart

celebrating curves,
bearing pain and
bliss–
eternal"

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So, what do you think? List the numbers of the Valentine(s) that appeal to you in the comments, and your feedback will help determine the recipient. There are no rules by which to judge the Valentines, these things just sort of have to "hit" your love receptors. How much work went into making them is, of course, worth considering as well. The recipient will be announced on Valentine's Day, February 14th. Please feel free to contribute to the comments up to the eve of that date. Thank you everybody for looking, reading and participating. Have a lovely weekend!

146 comments:

  1. i love the simplicity of #14. really enjoyed the poems of #5 and #12.

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  2. Obviously I'm terribly biased towards mine, but 2 is adorable, 12 is terribly clever, and 10? embroiderer's solidarity, sister.

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    1. Oh! I meant to say: The title of the piece is 'Bicroscopic Valentine'.

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  3. can we comment more than one time, like on Idol ?

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  4. I like #1, and its romantic use of cycling imagery (gearing up, being united like the links of a chain), also the contrast between the red background and the thunder strikes (a passing moment of bliss in the middle of troubled times - fortunately, the bicycle remains!)

    #10 is nice too: it's an accessory ! It would be so sad and lonely without the matching bicycle. Surely you wouldn't set them apart on Valentine's day, would you?

    #13 is something I would never have thought about: a much too round wheel carefully rebuilt as a heart on a truing stand. How boring would be life without its wobbles?

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    1. sorry I was referring to #15 not #13 - nothing compares to a "true" love...

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  5. 1, 14 and 3 are my favourites. I'm not so keen on the image for no 1, though it's cleverly done, but the quotation is simple and true! I love the image and simplicity of 14, and I love the suggestion of an exciting future in 3. Well done to everyone who contributed- there are some lovely ones!

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  6. Jennifer in ScotlandFebruary 11, 2012 at 5:07 AM

    I love number 1.

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  7. I like 13, if that was in a store I would buy that one. Also 14 is nice, wish there was more red in it though.

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  8. I think #5 is my fave. What a beautiful poem. #12 doesn't give me the warm fuzzies in quite the same way, but it's really clever. I like #2 for its simplicity, and I think #11 is just plain cool. Lugged (steel) frame and true love? Wonderful. The more I think about these gems, the harder it gets to choose. Any one of them would be deserving.

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  9. I vote for 3 and 10 as joint top, and 13 as runner up. I'm impressed by the way the tactile qualities of the embroidery in 10 come across visually on the screen, which seems a very suitable way of replicating the joy of a lovely red bicycle.

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  10. #7 simply rocks. We'll be MissBonnie's Valentines!

    Winston & Wilma

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  11. These make me wish they all came in a little box set like the ones we used to give out in grade school.
    I'm pretty impressed by number 10, it's cute and elegant, and also number 11, because I'm sucker for the vintage bicycle photos.

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  12. "Tricked out for your love gets my vote! "

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  13. 2 and 10 with an honorable mention for 4. 2 is the most graphically appealing to me. I really appreciate the work involved in 10 and the execution is very nice. I LOVE the tag line from 4 and would like it on a T-shirt but I'm kind of ambivalent about the graphic.

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  14. I love 14. So simple. Also like number 9.

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  15. love the colors of #7, the expression of the dog, the pop out heart shades plus having the theme tied to the prize - just a really FUN valentine!

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  16. #11 and #10 are unique and sweet!
    Tina

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  17. Dogs and bikes?? 'Nuff said! Number 7, starring Bonnie the Dog gets my vote!! Beyond adorable and fun...just what biking should be!

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  18. #10 embroidered valentine. I think it is more universal than a cliché regarding sisterhood. It is strongly feminine because of this kind of needlework being traditionally a woman's craft. Whether this was made by a woman or a man it is a Valentine idea or expression worked over into the form of embroidery. It would be a valentine for all who love bikes. Brothers, sister,friend daughter,son, mother,father, co-habitant, neighbor or self. It also fits the Birdie bike.

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  19. Oh, man, #8 is the most clever by far: "All I want to do is make tricycles with you." Ha!

    Sort of makes up for the (unintended) gratuitous porn of #1. (Or maybe it's just that I ought to give my mind a scrubbing...)

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    1. I think I see what you mean about #1... Unless I too have a dirty mind.

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  20. I designed #2 ... so I won't 'vote' for that.

    I like #13. Simple and crafty. Subtle bike relation with a warm general feeling. Nicely done.

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  21. Top 3:

    14, 10, 11.

    In that order. For some reason I just can't get over 14. Well done AinsleyW.

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  22. #10 for sure! It's elegant and retro -- just like the Bobbin!

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  23. Clearly, you are drawn to the visual.

    Love #5. Well done!

    #10 is nicely executed, and as Anonymous says above, both elegant and retro. Very pretty.

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  24. 10, 13 and 1, but especially 10 as my wife (of 36 years) always made me embroidered valentines. Well, used to.
    Michael B

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  25. #8 gets my vote. It's cute, it's clever and whimsical.

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  26. #2, then #14, and then #10 are my favorites.

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  27. I love #4 and #11. Both pictures have a lot of feeling in them. The drawing of the mixte is very good!
    yn

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  28. 11, for its strength and simplicity and 15, I don't know why.

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  29. number 14 hands down. it is the best.
    the others are pretty good too.
    but number 14 is the winner.

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  30. 15, or 10.
    15 because I like the true love/true wheels as a comparison, wheels turning, love - a constant. And who wouldn't' want a poem written for them for a valentine.
    And 10 is just lovely.

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  31. #2 for its cleverness, #10 because it is so charming & original

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  32. #14 is just plain excellent! Love the colors, simplicity, and wonderful words!! I also love that it says "Happy Valentine's day" without conforming to the "red & hearts" way of doing things! It's unique & lovely!

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  33. I really dig #14. Simple and elegant. After that, #10.

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  34. All of the entries are great but Julie's, #7, is too adorable. Number 8 is very clever, wish they sold that card at Hallmark. And number 10 is pure dedication, I can barely sew on a button.

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  35. I think #14 is outstanding!

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  36. I think #14 is very sweet and simple.

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  37. Number 9. YaY shareable!

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  38. #4 just tickles me, i love it!

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  39. They're all great, but I really love the simplicity of #14. Nicely done.

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  40. #2 is definitely my favorite. It's sweet without being saccharine.

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  41. OT Velouria you might be interested in this blog

    http://www.situp-cycle.com/


    I'm going for #10 and #4 for sheer effort!

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  42. PS, ordered myself a Gazelle Toer Populair today!

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  43. #14. Seems like my Surly bike.

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  44. My favourites are no. 10, and no. 13 - both great examples of their mediums!

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  45. #8 gets my vote! It looks the most DIY, which to me means it was made with the most LOVE

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  46. I liked 2, 4, 5, and 12. I think my favorite was 4 for both picture and quip. 2 is a close second, and I just really like 5's poem and 12's. I also really like the picture for 11, but not really the text.

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  47. SEVEN!!!!!!! 777777777777777777777!

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  48. Replies
    1. In order - No. 2 for its all round simplicity and beauty. No. 13 its great design. No. 10 for its workmanship.

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  49. I love number 10 it is beautiful and very nicely done.

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  50. Numer 10 is my favorite. It is beautiful and nicely done.

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  51. #7

    I would love to know how you end up making the selection. I am a teacher and ran a similar contest with my students (the prize was a toy bunny). It wasn't easy!

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    1. Not sure yet! There is one that appeals to me personally more than the others, but that does not seem like a fair way to make the selection. So I am mainly considering how "impactful" the valentines are and how much complexity/time/energy has likely gone into them.

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  52. A lot of these seem nearly effortless. In other words, the authors/artists have made it look "easy", when it most assuredly is not.
    We are among some wellsprings of talent.

    I would have a hard time selecting a winner.


    Congratulations to all of you!

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  53. In no particular order:
    #3 - beautiful colors, and I love that it was done under a microscope.
    #5 - very well-written poem.
    #10 - awesome stitching!

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  54. #14, simple, yet conveys the meaning of valentines day.

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  55. I love 3 and 10! Well done to all.

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  56. 15! I love the use of the QBP box and glitter!

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  57. I like number 10. the simplicity, and clarity of the lovely embroidery makes my eye want to linger. Very pretty

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  58. Looks like 10, 14, 2, 7, 12,11 & 4 are getting the most feedback so far. This is difficult!

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  59. 1, 3, 8, 11, picture in 15. These are all freakin wonderful> Bikeheads Unite in One Big Bike Love Fest! More, more, more!!!

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  60. Number #4 speaking here, I'm glad some of you like my drawing! It was a lot of work, and no small amount of time was spent in the kitchen bouncing bike-puns off my roommate. That being said, I'm also a huge embroidery nerd. I am in love with #10. Why can't my fill-stitches look that perfect? ;_;

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  61. 15 is my favorite, simple, metaphoric, profound.

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  62. Number 8 strikes me as very original. I like colored paper collage.

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  63. I really really like No. 10!! It shows craftmanship and creativity !

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  64. Really Love number 10 shows good skills of creativity and craftmanship.

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  65. 14 is my choice while 2in is good as well.

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  66. While they are all amazing, 14 was the one that hit me as being flirtatious and cute, just as a valentine should be.

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  67. Number 13 is my top choice. It sends me some other place. Love it.

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  68. Number #4 is my fav.

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  69. My vote is for #7--- made me giggle!

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  70. Definitely #4. But maybe I'm just a sucker for a pun that doesn't suck.

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  71. I really like #2, it looks like a nice card. #10 is really neat but does not hit me as a card but something I would put on the wall.

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  72. Several beautiful entries, but Bonnie steals the show. #7 for the win!

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  73. #12 is my favorite! :)

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  74. #11 Speaks of a gentler time when there was time for quality bikes and quality relationships......

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  75. I LOVE #12...Such cute comparisons and beautiful wording, But mostly because the author has been my Valentine for 34 Valentine's Days, and has written me many poems. He has traveled over 20,000 miles on his bicycle and now that he is retiring this year, I need to ride along for our next 34 years together, but I don't own a bicycle........ <3 <3 <3

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    1. First: Win her heart.
      Then: Try for the bicycle. :)

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  76. No 12 speaks of an enduring relationship, no matter the obstacles which challenge the union. Very well spoken by the author.

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  77. # 12. Anyone who can make love to a bike with a Valentine theme.....deserves the Bike. Way to go Mr. B.

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  78. I love #12! Great metaphoric language and creativity with SO many bicycle references!

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  79. Who ever thought a give-away would be so stressful!! Hang in there Velouria.

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  80. Oh my, so many votes for #12 all of the sudden : ))

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  81. I like #15

    Happy and sad, poem and picture, mysterious and real, and above all, true.

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  82. The more I look at #1, the more I appreciate how complicated it is. I also like #15. Most of the other entries here are too saccharine for me, sorry.

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  83. Definitely #11. Great pic and work.

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  84. #12 does a great job of comparing the relationship of a husband and wife as that of the tires of a bike. If a bike is missing a tire it's not going to function the way it should, just like a good marriage needs two people working as a team.

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  85. #3 here! I just wanted to drop a huge thank you to everyone who's visited my Flickr stream via this blog (I have had a serious amount of traffic coming from here. I checked my stats last night and was blown away) and left comments on my photos throughout. You're a seriously classy and friendly bunch, and I appreciate it. Clearly I'm at the right blog for venturing into the world of bicycles, complete with a fantastic community. And I really don't envy Velouria the hard decision she has to make (Though if I'm getting whooped, again I say let it be by 2 or 10!)

    So I'm going to say it on top of my entry: Happy Valentine's Day!

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  86. #5 and #15
    poetry ftw!

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  87. Some of the entries here are so good they almost look professional, but I hope you won't make your choice based on that. A Valentine should have HEART. I vote for #15 and #8.

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  88. #12 - I like the sentiment and the allegories!

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  89. #3!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  90. Oh this is indeed a difficult choice...I don't envy you on that,they all looked great. 12 & 14 inparticular grabbed my attention,though :)

    The Disabled Cyclist

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  91. #11 is my favorite of the bunch.

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  92. #11. Definitely #11.

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  93. I really like #12

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  94. Thank you everyone, I am going to announce the recipient this evening!

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  95. I especially liked #12. Very creative and you could just picture the wheels working together.

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  96. Wow! You have your work cut out for you. 12, 11, and 13. In that order. Thanks for sharing them with us.

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  97. Swoonworthy? 10!! and 7 for fun factor.

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  98. I love #1. I love the bike chain that runs through it.

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  99. Park Girl here (#1). I just wanted to tell you about my submission. It's a collage made from Mountain Bike magazines, wire, beads, fabric, and a photo of Brigitte Bardot and Jean-Louis Trintignant. Thank you for all of the nice comments. I enjoyed making it! (Someone will have to enlighten me on the porn, I just don't see it.)

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    Replies
    1. look below the guy's waistline

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  100. oh my heart, I ADORE #1!!! I love love love all of the different dimensions to it. It speaks "LOVE" in so many ways. I feel the power of the woman on the beautiful red bike, the intensity of the enviroment speaks volumes about the energy coursing through the couple....the red makes a dynamic statement with its many different shades and what can be done to make it any better??? Well lightening rods of bicycle chains of course!!! Out of all of the pictures, which are all noteworthy, I can really see that Park Girl put alot of time and creativity into that piece. I would buy this in a heartbeat and have it framed...just classic!

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  101. Yep - #1 - the layers and use of texture. I like the use of the red string layered over the bike chain and web image behind -- very nice.

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  102. #1 is the best..looks like a collage and very unusual from the rest of the group...all of the red is awareness of the heart and love...

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  103. They are all so creative, but #1 is a winner without a doubt!

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  104. The poem in #15 gets to me in a way I can't describe. And #10 is cute and unique. Those are my top two.

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  105. My favorites focus on the written and not just the visual: 5, 9, 12 and 15 in no particular order. Wish I could read 9 better.

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  106. #1 -- Edgy and unexpected -- just like the lovely bicycle!

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  107. #4 - This commuter's valentine is a mixte.
    And #7 just cracks me up.

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  108. #12 is so sweet!! Love it!

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  109. The recipient has been announced here! Thank you everybody for taking part and for commenting!

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