Tulip Time's Dutch Dance Costumes
The Netherlands is divided into 12 provinces, 8 of which are represented in costume by the dancers in our festival. Many people are curious as to how the costumes are made and their cost. Each one of the dancers costumes is hand made to fit that individual. In addition to fabrics, wooden shoes and in some cases, specially crafted hats or other accessories must be purchased. If the dancer or a family member makes the costume they will save money in seamstress fees. Total costume costs, including seamstress fees, shoes and all accessories range from $180–$300+ per costume. Because of the high cost, the Join the Dance Initiative was created to fund the making of these costumes. Your donation to this fund makes it possible for more local students to participate in Dutch Dance. For more information, go to www.tuliptime.com/jointhedance.
Dancer costumes are cut from hand made patterns, available only from the Tulip Time Festival Costume Directors. Before a dancer can perform, the costume is inspected to assure that it meets the standard for fit, function, safety, authenticity and construction. A question frequently asked by tourists watching the dancers is whether the girls from Dutch descent commonly have such thick ankles. The answer is, of course, no. In order to walk and dance comfortably, in the wooden shoes, they all wear several pair of heavy socks. In general, the clothing in our festival represents styles of the mid 1800s through the mid 1900s.
To learn more and see examples of Dutch costumes, visit the new Dutch Dance Exhibit, one of four exhibits in the Visual Arts Series featured at the Holland Area Arts Council May 2-10, 2020. https://tuliptime.com/events/dd-exhibit