1. Vanilla Bicycles

Vanilla Bicycles, maker of custom cruiser- and commuter-bike fame (shown above, two recent designs) is now taking orders on a new line of full-custom racing bikes, meticulously designed and all hand-built. See details of both lines at vanillabicycles.com and www.speedvagen.com

In recent years, Portland’s industrial designers have given form to an array of beautiful, functional things Americans use every day, from zip drives and keyboards to camp stoves and, of course, bicycles. In fact, Portland is shining a bright enough light to lure the Industrial Designers Society of America’s (IDSA) annual thinkfest here in August, when 700 attendees will listen to eggheads—half of them home-grown—wax philosophical on everything from electric cars to violins.