The Biker Collective joins Merlin at Burntwood HQ
On July 1st we were finally able to round up Annette, Zak and Nate – a.k.a The Biker Collective for a day at Merlin, consisting of product training and ending with a ride-out and photoshoot on Cannock Chase.
A typically drizzly start to the day didn’t dampen the spirits of the Collective. Arrival at our HQ from a bright-eyed trio proved instantly that they were eager to learn more about Merlin and the product we offer.
After peeling themselves out of their damp bike gear, Annette pulled a box of beautiful bike-shaped shortbreads out of her bag that she’d made herself – much to the delight of the Collective and the entire Merlin team (including those who weren’t even in the room!)
Sitting down in the Merlin showroom with coffees in hand, the day began with an introduction to the brand. Here the Collective learned more about how the Merlin brand came to be; from the people behind the brand to how we got to where we are today, and about our plans for the future.
Then, to the most exciting part – the product. Moving through the three core collections – Explorer, Heritage and Leisure Moto, we spoke about the key materials that make up each garment and the story behind the collections.
The three rider segments are a key part of Merlin and what we do. They allow us to cover most styles of riding without sacrificing features or quality while all having a distinct style.
Rather than simply being fed lots of technical and confusing information, we encouraged touch and feel – it’s a great way to really begin to understand what we offer. The Collective didn’t need to be told twice – straight away they were reaching for the jackets and trying them on for size as their wish lists got longer (and more expensive!)
With knowledge imparted and Annette, Zak and Nate soaking it up like sponges, they kitted back up into their slightly damp gear and we headed out to Cannock Chase for a ride-out and photoshoot.
Of course, in typical British style the heavens remained open for the entire time but again the vibe wasn’t dampened at all – and a British brand + a rainy photoshoot day seemed rather fitting.
We travelled the few miles to the Chase, parking up in the drizzle to capture some shots of the three of them as well as the Merlin gear they were clad in and of course, their stunning bikes. It was also important to get some images of the Collective together – considering it was their first time meeting each other they were acting like old friends, which was incredibly refreshing for us to see.
Despite the rain beginning to hit harder, spirits remained high and the three enjoyed (we hope) the opportunity to grab some professional snaps of themselves.
Before heading back to base, we decided to capture a few riding shots with the Collective riding up and back down the road past the photographer to grab some shots of the three of them riding together for the first time. Back and forth, in formation and never stepping out of line – this didn’t appear to be their first rodeo.
We returned to HQ for lunch before the Collective headed home slightly damp, but with heads full of Merlin.
“It was incredibly cool to get an insight into Merlin’s product development process, including raw material selection and creation, alongside the motivation behind the designs. I’m certain the feel, look and utility of (soon-to-be-released) new products are going to excite fans of Merlin.
Also, it was great to hang out with my fellow riders from the Merlin Biker Collective a.k.a. MBC. I’m looking forward to many more ride-outs with them.” Nate said of his day at Merlin HQ.
Zak said: “Being part of the Merlin Biker Collective for me has always been about being closer to the products I know and love to wear each day. During our time together I really got to understand more about why certain products look the way they do, the fabrics used and the features behind them.
I think the best thing for me was being able to see the whole range in one place like never before and seeing the sheer diversity to the range. The sustainable fabrics now being used inspired me to what the future of the industry could look like and resonated with me. The fact I am not compromising on quality or my own safety by treading a little lighter on the planet was also a key take away from the day. I can’t wait to see what 2022 and beyond brings for the Merlin team. Thanks for having me as one of the squad.”
Finally, Annette said: “I had such an enjoyable full-packed day with the Merlin team and getting to know Nate & Zak the other 2/3rds of the Merlin Biker Collective. The opportunity to be immersed in the Merlin journey, seeing, touching and feeling the collections. It was great to learn about each garment and the array of thoughtful features.
Published on August 8, 2022 by Emily Macbeth