After pointing out that the Dutch are obsessed with two words, ‘gratis’ and ‘korting’ the Shallow Man was once again cast out into the wilderness. For days I wandered, as dazed and confused as a Dutch woman when she meets a man that doesn’t want to have sex on the second date.  For days I roamed this flat and ‘tolerant’ land until I crossed into Belgium where fearful of being bored to death, I moved on to France.

Weary as the fingers of a Dutch woman swiping through Tinder profiles on a Friday night, I laid down to rest. I was awoken by a strange sound, when I opened my eyes, an elegantly dressed couple stood at the foot of my bed.

Startled, but still half asleep I said to the couple “You’ve got the wrong hotel room, I didn’t order a duo” Responding in perfect English the female of the two said, “Shallow Man, we are Simone and Pierre, the gods of fashion. We are well aware of your blog and would like you to return to the Netherlands and tell your readers the seven deadly sins of Dutch fashion.”

“So you’re French? But your English is so good.

“Shallow Man, I shall say this only once, not all French people speak English with an Allo Allo accent.” Replied a clearly irritated Pierre. 99.9% perhaps, but not all.

“Return to Amsterdam and share the seven deadly sins of fashion committed by the Dutch. Educate them before it’s too late”

Which brings me to the subject of today’s post.

Now this post might annoy some, and if as a result, I’m captured by a group of angry female Dutch (excuse me while I laugh) fashion bloggers, I’ll say to my detractors, “Dutch fashion blogs are incredibly creative, take a photo of yourself wearing a different pair of jeans five days a week, with a mismatching top and a pair of shoes that are so flat you could ski downslopein them. You’d be better off calling yourself comedy bloggers, as the outfits many of you wear certainly make me laugh”

The things I do for my readers!


1. Thou shalt not worship denim

The Dutch and denim go together like American police and dead black people. The Dutch can’t get enough of denim. In fact, the Netherlands is the number one market in Europe for jeans. It’s the only place in the world where you can buy denim lined children’s buggies, coffins, and condoms. They even get married wearing jeans.

Personally, I blame Holland’s top fashion blogger, Marloes de Smaakloos, for her blog, ‘denim met alles.’ which is believed to have started the Dutch jeans obsession.

As if the overdose of denim wasn’t bad enough, prepare yourselves for the latest diabolical trend in jeans for women, the horrors of the tuinbroek. Very fashionable in the Netherlands this season.

The latest denim nightmare

The latest denim nightmare

2. Wearing skirts that are too short while cycling

As I write this post, Dutch women have suddenly returned en masse to the terraces. Clouds of smoke can be seen from space over the Netherlands as groups of ladies sit together and celebrate the return of the sun. This for us nature lovers in the Netherlands is the first sign of spring.

The second sign of spring is when you bear witness to ladies hitching up their skirts, then clambering onto their bikes like a Texan rodeo cowboy mounting a horse.

A simple tip for all you lovely Dutch ladies out there. If while getting onto your bike you feel a cold draft at the top of your stairway to heaven, doe het niet, the skirt is too short!!

short skirts on bikes in the netherlands leads to

Ladies, be careful while cycling

3. White leggings!

Leggings are not pants.  In the Netherlands you’ll often hear the pained cry of “my poor eyes, what did I just see?” This often occurs when seeing women wearing leggings as pants. I used to wonder if perhaps they’d rushed out of their apartments in such a hurry, that they’d forgotten to put on a skirt. I soon realized that actually, a lot of women think that leggings are a fine substitute for pants. That’s bad enough, but one of the mortal sins that can be committed is to wear white leggings. Unless you’re going to a fancy dress party as a weisswurst, leave the white leggings alone.

Bavarian white sausage, weisswurst

Some Dutch women love weisswurst so much that they try and dress up like them



4. Wearing Birkenstocks because they are comfortable

The Dutch are obsessed with dressing to be comfortable. I don’t know why they don’t just leave the house wrapped in a duvet and a pillow tied to their heads and be done with it. Dressing comfortable overrides everything. Is it hot outside? “I’m going to give my toes some much needed fresh air, by wearing sandals.” The number one brand of sandals in the Netherlands being particularly hideous, Birkenstocks.

Dutch fashion

Jeans and Birkenstocks, loved by the Dutch. She’s painted her toenails so is probably a foreigner

5. Fear of heights

With the Netherlands being so flat, this has led to lots of Dutch women being genetically terrified of heights. For that reason, they prefer to keep their feet as close to the ground as possible. At Schiphol, there’s even a shoe repair service that does booming business reducing the height of the heels of shoes bought by Dutch women while on holiday.

This is probably for the best. Dutch women are so unused to walking in high heels, that when they do, they remind me of videos I’ve seen of newly released plofkip (battery farmed chickens), struggling to take their first steps. You see them staggering from side to side painfully, and want to shout, “come on Froukje, keep trying, I know it hurts, but you can do it.” Zielig!”


6. Dutch fashion chic, looking like a corpse

A Dutch woman wearing lipstick is like a Dutch banker that doesn’t wear brown shoes, pretty bloody rare. The best selling lipstick in the Netherlands? It’s actually the same type that they put on actors playing corpses in the walking dead and the CSI series. The biggest fear of the average Dutch girl is that they might be seen to be wearing makeup that actually stands out. This being the case, they’d rather look like the undead, or as if a vampire has drained all their blood than be accused of committing the ultimate Dutch fashion faux pas and look as if they might actually be wearing makeup.

Dutch fashion

The photo that hangs on the wall of all Dutch beauty salons


7. Thou shalt definitely not wear Red jeans

Until I moved to the Netherlands, I didn’t even realize that it was possible to buy jeans in red. These are particularly loved by Dutch men. The challenge for expats is always whether to laugh, cry, or simply vomit.

The original red jeans apparently came into being when a batch of jeans was accidentally dyed red during the production process. The leadership of the organization, not wanting to simply throw them away, or insult refugees by handing them over to asylum seeker centers, did the next best thing. They asked themselves, “who would ever buy red jeans?” A smart executive responded, “sell them to the Dutch, as long as we offer a korting, (discount) they’ll wear anything.” The rest, as they say, is history.

Dating a Dutchman was a bit of a shock for the expat lady

Jeroen, those jeans are very…Red


No members of the undead were hurt during the writing of this post. Till next time, hou je kop!