To continue, we cross the waters of the southern sea to the other part of the North, North-Holland.
Holland btw is not the name of the Netherlands, it is one of the provinces. there are two, north- and south- holland. North Holland was doing pretty well too judging from the abundance of gold jewellery. The thing on the lady’s forehead is called a ”forehead-needle” and it was worn in Groningen and Friesland also. Sometimes made of gold, with very delicate and intricate decoration, or made of silver with diamonds.
Young girl. All this jewellery was only for special occasions and for church going. Check out the necklace: These are the traditional necklaces worn in The Netherlands, made either of Coral, or out of Garnets. Always with a large gold lock. The lock is worn in front. if it is in the middle it means the lady is married, to the left: she is engaged, to the right she is still available!
Two ladies from Huizen, which still counts as North Holland, but it is right to the east below what used to be the ”Southern sea” (a large body of silted water, half sea, and half lake, and as big as half the Netherlands, now filled up and made into ”new land”)
The lady to the right wears her cap with an ear-iron, (a very small one in Huizen) the one to the left without.
Now for those who have seen some Dutch promotions, all these costumes must seem very strange. That is because; when the tourists are presented with dutch costumes, they always get to see the costumes from a few fishing villages around the former Southern sea.
These ones, from the village of Volendam:
Girls from Marken
In the middle of the Netherlands, going a bit to the south-west, we have the Dutch ”Bible-belt” As far as I know the only region where (especially women) still wear the regional dress daily. That is because of the fundamentalist Christian mentality. These people also don’t inoculate their children because it’s ”all in the hands of God” Thereby forming a real danger to themselves, and the rest of the Netherlands if ever we get a dangerous epidemic disease going about.
In my early childhood there was a polio epidemic and many children died, or became stuck as invalids, because of their parents refusing to let them be inoculated. We just had a minor outbreak of a very unpleasant but not deadly disease amongst these people. I think God has given us brains and made us capable of developing medicines (and supplying the ingredients) as his/her way of helping us to combat disease. Of course a real caring God might not have placed all these diseases around us in the first place, but I’m getting needlessly metaphysical here.
Anyway, religious bigotry is the best way of preserving ancient customs, so I have some nice images of the typical Staphorster fashions to show.
One very tipical way of decorating is the use of little coloured spots, on everything.
Schoolgirls, very cute
On special festive days older girls wear their ear-iron
Ladies getting ready to represent Staphorst on the queen’s birthday. The lady in blue is in mourning.
Two girls in traditional dress.
The little girls at the bottom wear a ”nette” in winter, a cap with an astrakan border, and the hair is then brushed over it, and being held with an elastic band.
The lady to the right is dressed for church, with a lace cap over the ear-iron, and a bible with silver lock and decorations and a carrying chain.
Ladies from Marken in full-dress wearing their ”Kraplappen” stiffened squares of ancient and expensive fabrics.
The lady on the left is in mourning, blue and purple are mourning colours, the lady on the right is wearing what looks like an eighteenth century ”Sits”. A handpainted silk from India.
Right , to the next bit, we move down towards the islands at the bottom left on the map. a Province known as Zeeland. (guess what: sea-land) Lots of bits of land surrounded by sea. On special days (and with no strong winds blowing) ladies wear an enormous shell like lace cap. The form of the cap tells you if she is a Protestant or Catholic. But all the islands have their own take on dress, Apparently traditional dress is still very much alive in different Folk-societys; I found a lot of good pictures!
Sit back, and enjoy!
A protestant lady
A catholic lady
For really splashing out one can hang pendants, called ”bellen” on the spirals. They are triangular in shape with pearls hanging at the bottom.
two ladies, one wears the shellshaped stiffened cap, the other wears it unstiffened
A couple from Zuid Beveland in the fashion of 1860
Girls dressed in the style of 1850
One island, called ”the land of Axel” has been very isolated it the past, and the costume had evolved in a fairly spectacular manner.
Isn’t that interesting? Like wildlife on an isolated island in the pacific, only here it is costume. look at the folded material of the other ladies in the photos above, and see what happend to that bit in the land of Axel!
the beautiful beaded decoration is called a ”beuk” and they are made using antique beads, by the ladies themselves.
Modern folks wearing the traditional Axel dress.
This is it. And, believe it or not, I haven’t covered all! There are more! But I’m stopping now.