We love shopping. And if you see the amount of excellent fashion & lifestyle stores in the small country of the Netherlands, we believe you do too. That’s probably because you really experience a store when you can touch, see, feel and smell the place. In order for you to expand those nice experiences, we went to some of the finest fashion & lifestyle stores in the Netherlands and described them for you.
This part is all about the ones in the Northeast of the Netherlands. We found 11 stores that absolutely spoiled our senses.
12, Eiland, 8011 XR Zwolle
A very pleasant and open welcome awaits when you enter through the coffee bar in Pistache. Funny detail is that most of the merchandise which cosy up the place is for sale. So if a friend of you who you’re have coffee with goes: ‘Oh, how cute is this plant on the table’, you could say: ‘well, go ahead and buy it…’ which is magnificent of course. After you finished you coffee you can go up to the actual place to be. When entering this place you’ll be stunned by the greatness of an atmospheric place which houses a lunchroom, a hairdresser, different shop-in-shops and a whole lot of very special lifestyle and fashion brands. They even accommodate the occasional festival. About 80% of their collection is sustainable and a 100% is moving. With ‘moving’ we mean ‘never standing still’, all with the mere goal of surprising the customers every time they re-enterthis wonderful store.
In an attempt to describe this store, we can approach reality best with the words ‘eye for detail’ and ‘flawless’. I use the word ‘approach’, because the atmosphere of this sensational store is hard to grasp with words. From the astronaut suit, to the utmost sophisticated way of presenting their well-chosen and thus also refined brands, on to the wall cupboard decorated with old army gear, preserved butterflies and antiques like globes and bike saddles and boxing gloves – every element is thought through. You should pay them a visit, drink a cup of coffee and breath in all the details. Took us three hours before we left and we still didn’t want to. Just go there. Believe us when we say it’s worth your time.
14,Weverstraat, 6811 EL Arnhem
Powerful in store design combined with high end brands is what forged this Humanoid store in Arnhem. Of course, Humanoid is a powerful brand on its own, but to top it off, they added brand such as Acne, Forte_Forte, Hope and Homecore. The store is established in an old church. The outside of that church, along with some details on the inside, are still intact. This contrasts so well with the modern in store design, that it might take away your breath for a second. Don’t worry though, you’ll find yourself receiving a glass of water or a coffee to your liking as soon as a staff member sees you’re in trouble. Our advice: go there and experience this awesome concept yourself.
20, Oude kijk in ’t Jatstraat, 9712 EH Groningen
HOLTBAR, deriving from the Danish word ‘Holdbar’, meaning ‘sustainable’, is a store where you can see, eat and feel green. That’s due to the numerous lovely (hang)plants the store hauls, but also due to the biological food and beverages they serve, and moreover due to the fair sustainable accessories, books, jewellery, and stationary they offer. This combishop is as inspiring as it is cute and we think they have one secret ingredient whom not a lot of stores have; the daily special – made by the mother of the owner. It gives a certain sense of familiarity to it which brings you back to that Saturday afternoon your mum or grandma made you a blueberry cheesecake. And if it doesn’t bring back memories, it is still a delicious cheese cake.
9, Zwanestraat, 9712CH Groningen
If you need help in what to wear and combine considering your clothing, Clement, owner of Cleding Raad will give you advice (Ducth: raad) on what to pick and wear. His advice may sometimes be brutally honest, but it is sincere and with the mere goal to help you find the things that suit you, not to sell as much as possible. Apart from advice on your outfit, you can also go to this hip, rough and industrial store to chill, drink some coffee or a beer, read a book and just experience the northern Dutch hospitality and some ‘gezelligheid’ as they know it. If you’re around, don’t be shy, just have a look and enjoy the vibe.
41, Twijnstraat, 3511 ZH Utrecht
Beautiful materials. Unique Dutch designers. Quality designs made with passion. These are some of the pillars which make this store thrive as well as it does. But above all, every brand and product in this store tells or contributes to a story. That might be the reason that the interior of the store is very clean and minimalistic. So there is more room for the story to be told. And when you are inside, there are some really nice people who are more than happy to tell you each story you want to know. Enjoy a coffee and listen to the tales they tell.
72, de Langestraat, 3811 AJ Amersfoort (Men) & 5, Kortegracht, 3811 KG Amersfoort (Women)
They’ve put their passion in their name. They want you to be free. To feel the liberty to be who and how you want to be – and claiming that it’s a state of mind. ‘Go for it’. To be fair, these thoughts are very familiar to us, which is why we love this store so much. In the end, it’s all about grasping this moment and doing what you really love. Being connected to others and being part of the bigger picture. That’s what they stand for and you can really see that in their way of presenting themselves. In this store, you can be yourself and find out more about yourself on terms of fashion as well as interior, both lifestyle goods which project who you are today.
112, Korenstraat, 7311 LP Apeldoorn
Eigen, translated own in the meaning of ‘it’s your own’. And that’s what they mean, this store is your own to decide what you do in it and make out of it. Whether you want to buy a cactus, or a nice little red summers dress. Or if you’d rather get a latte and chill in their lunchroom. Or maybe, you’d like a break from you stroll through the centre and enjoy a cold beer in their urban garden. It’s up to you. The only thing the staff does is act nice and help you with whatever you need. The rest is up to you.
B.O.B – Best Of Brands
9, Hamseweg, 3828 AA Hoogland
With denim as their core product, and service, quality and the best of brands as their core promises, they set themselves apart from the rest to begin with. That they own and offer their own premium denim brand – Butcher of Blue – and actually fulfil their promises, sets them apart all the way. Denham, Diesel, Levi’s, Nudie jeans, Samsoe Samoes, Aspesi are some in many, many more brands they offer. They fill up more than 300 square meters, so let yourself go and enjoy this denim-Valhalla. And, o yeah, they also sell some unbelievably cool and vintage interior products. Go there.
14-16, Sassenstraat, 8011 PC Zwolle
This unique concept stacks up brands that make you awe. Daily Paper, ETQ, In gold we trust, Mason Garments, you name it, they probably have it. The uniqueness in this concept is how well this younr entrepreneur combines different types of business. On- and offline shopping for example. Out here, you can reserve your clothing online, and during a shopping-Sunday, you can fit it in the store. But it doesn’t stop there. He also creates working spaces for start-ups and other small companies. We love this mind-set of sharing is caring, and dividing is multiplying. Go there and breath in the entrepreneurial spirit of this awesome concept.
6, Eiland, 6811DC Arnhem
With its rural appearance and breath-taking sense of style, this last one on the list is definitely not the least one. It houses in an old newspaper factory and because of its sober in store design, you can still feel it when you enter. With a reason of course. Funny thing is that the in store design isn’t even their best feature. Judith – owner of the store – is the secret that lies behind this store, which has been hauling some of the best fashion designers since the last 30 years. Judith has an amazing feel for what’s coming next, and you feel that. And next to the sight you’ll love, this store will also pamper your smelling sense as you enter the store. That’s due to their unique niche collection of fragrances which are presented in the store. Go there and experience Judith’s amazing sense for design, beauty and luxury.
Your typical Looney Tune would say: ‘That’s all folks..’
I’ll ad ‘..for now’, because we will be ending this three-parted journey with some awesome stores in the West of the Netherlands. So stay tuned!
Correspondent J. for Laauw.