Dutch Klompens

In Attire
Relationship: Child of im/migrant
Group:
Dutch Klompens
Dutch Klompens

My dads’ side of the family is from the southern part of The Netherlands, from a town called Vught.  My dad grew up there with his three sisters Pauline, Willemijn, and Marieke. There is a tradition in my family that when a child is born they receive a pair of Klompens.   When I was born my aunts from The Netherlands sent over a pair of baby Klompens.  Now every time I go back to The Netherlands I receive a new pair. Klompens are traditional Dutch shoes that are made from willow or poplar trees.  After it is formed into a shoe, it is fully painted in yellow and has a hand-painted design on it.  The design has three crosses on it which represents the Amsterdam flag, Amsterdam is the capital of The Netherlands.  To this day, farmers and gardeners still wear them while working because they protect their feet.  People also wear them during folkloric dancing and during King’s Day celebration (Koningsdag).  King’s Day is a national holiday in Holland.  The date marks the birth of King Willem-Alexander on April 27th.  People tend to dress all in orange, the national color, and have a parade on boats through the canals.  Klompens are a reminder for me of my family and where I come from. 

Place(s): Netherlands, New York
Year: 2000

– EMK

Relationship:  Child of im/migrant Child of im/migrant