The British custom frame building industry is very close to the heart of Saffron Frameworks‘ Matthew Sowter, and not only because he is British and a frame builder himself. A co-author of Made In England—The Artisans behind the Handbuilt Bicycle, alongside Ricky Feather and photographer Kayti Peschke, Matthew belongs to a culture of passionate craftspeople as old as the bicycle itself.
Like the contemporaries featured in his book, there is a high standard of quality to Matthew’s work, although Saffron Frameworks has only been in production for just under a year. One advantage of having the skills to build frames is being able to make the bike of your own dreams. This is Matthew’s Light Tourer, designed for exploring B roads with little more than a handlebar bag or front rack.
Matthew removed a fair amount of material from the webs on the Long Shen Arrowhead lugs, resulting in a cleaner line, yet still retaining the streamlined effect. The lugs were matched with Darrell Llewellyn McCulloch’s superb dropouts, which will bring an air of sophistication to any frame. The final touch was a full SRAM RED group set, buffed back and painted to match the frame.
Saffron Frameworks is just about to open in a new workshop in London’s Camberwell area. Check out the rest of his builds and drop him a line via his website.