Shopping in Alkmaar with Sylvia

Top COS, trousers Corel, sneakers EssentielAs you can understand, when Sylvia of 40+Style is in The Netherlands we try to see as much of each other as we can (and my job allows). We like talking (a lot), taking pictures, shopping and visiting nice towns. Last Wednesday Sylvia and I went shopping in Alkmaar. An old town in the North-West part of Holland. And it did not disappoint. The gorgeous weather was a bonus.

But first let me tell you what went on the week before: our parquet floor got varnished. Which meant EVERYTHING had to be removed from the living room (into the shed and upstairs rooms). And that was a lot of hard work! As we couldn’t be in the living room for four days, we decided to bring the dog to a “dog sitter” she loves, put the cat in a pension (which she hated and where she hardly ate, poor thing) and pack ourselves off to the south of France. I will report on the holiday (outfits) next week as that takes some sorting out. This week is so hectic with putting everything back in its place that I only have time to make a simple blog post. These shopping days with friends are more straight forward so holiday pictures give way to shopping in Alkmaar with Sylvia.

Below: we started with coffee, tea and lunch in this place (Heeren van Sonoy).

Shopping in Alkmaar with Sylvia

Below: you have seen this COS top before in the London post. The trousers are by Corel and a terrific find at a second hand shop. The bag is my precious Italian bag, bought in Rome years ago.

Top COS, trousers Corel, sneakers Essentiel

Below: and you are probably wondering about the sneakers…

Top COS, trousers Corel, sneakers Essentiel

Below: close-up of the sneakers. By Essentiel. These sneakers hold a secret: you can wear them in two ways. The top picture shows you the way I wore them in Alkmaar. A bit silver/yellow coloured. But… if you brush the nap the other way, the sequins create a golden bling. When I discovered that, it was a done deal. And like the black Essentiel sneakers I bought (see this post) they are very comfortable.

Sneakers Essentiel

It is going to be tough on my self-control as Essentiel opened a shop in the street between my home and the centre of town. So I will always pass it. This is going to be so difficult as I love about everything they sell…

Below: nice picture of Sylvia, in a lovely blue and white summer outfit with red details. I swear, we didn’t know we would both be wearing these colours.

Alkmaar with Sylvia

Below: of course we kindly asked somebody to take a picture of the both of us.

Shopping in Alkmaar with Sylvia

Below: as I said, Alkmaar is a lovely old town with lots of beautiful buildings.

Shopping in Alkmaar with Sylvia

Below: Sylvia started taking photos of me on the above bridge: “I still don’t know what to do with my hands!!!?!”

Top COS, trousers Corel, sneakers Essentiel

Below: I quite liked this one.

Top COS, trousers Corel, sneakers Essentiel

Below: now watch the little boat in the water. And more specific, the half naked guy in it. He roused my interest…

Top COS, trousers Corel, sneakers Essentiel

Below: what makes me laugh, is the expression on my face a few seconds later: “WELL ….what do you know?”

Top COS, trousers Corel, sneakers Essentiel

Below: back to posing

Top COS, trousers Corel, sneakers Essentiel

Below: as we hit the little streets with so many nice little shops, I saw this lady and asked whether I could photograph her and put her on my blog. She laughed and said: “Can’t wait to get home and tell my sons this. They always question my styling haha. That will show them!”

Shopping in Alkmaar with Sylvia

Below: cute!!! elephant and bunnies.

Shopping in Alkmaar with Sylvia

Below: I will end this post with three more picturesque photos of Alkmaar.

Shopping in Alkmaar with Sylvia

Shopping in Alkmaar with Sylvia

Below: notice the little statue of a man on the chimney, far right in the photo?

Shopping in Alkmaar with Sylvia

Did we shop? Oh yes we did. Sylvia bought a great dress and a lot of shoes. But I leave it up to her to show them to you on her own 40+Style. And no, I didn’t buy anything. The sneakers were enough spending.

Below: OK one last happy picture before I leave you.


No Fear of Fashion



  1. 18 June 2017 / 17:26

    We are going through some remodeling too, so I know exactly what you’re going through! The dust is horrific and life is a shambles!! But it’ll be great when it’s done…
    How wonderful you get to meet up with Sylvia!! Girlfriends are the chocolate chips in our cookies!!

    • 18 June 2017 / 19:57

      I had the curtains dry cleaned too. Which I think was a clever move by me (pat on my shoulder).
      The dust is still falling, but it is getting better and as you say it is great now it is done. Hopefully not for another 10 or 15 years.
      And I love your expression of girlfriends being the chocolate chips in our cookies. Brilliant. And so true.

  2. 18 June 2017 / 18:40

    I love your sneakers, Greetje. I was just telling another Malaysian blogger how much I admired her shiny, sequiny ones, and that I’m on active prowl duty looking for a pair of my own. Then you show me yours, and I discover that Essentiel has an online shop. And I found the exact pair you’re wearing. Arrgghhh. I think that means thank you? πŸ˜›

    • 18 June 2017 / 19:59

      If they ship to your neck of the woods I would say: have fun with them. If not, maybe I can oblige? Always difficult size wise of course but still. Let me know. That is the nice thing about blogging and at the same time, the bad thing: you get so inspired. All the time haha.

      • 18 June 2017 / 20:13

        They do but (thankfully?), my size is sold out πŸ™‚ so my wallet stays sane for now. Well, relatively speaking. I’m in Malaysia at the moment and with the exchange rate being the way it is, it’s really easy to go crazy shopping.

        • 18 June 2017 / 20:47

          It is easy to go crazy shopping at all times. Enjoy your holiday.

  3. 18 June 2017 / 20:37

    Thanks for sharing the great photos of Alkmaar and sending me down memory lane. The two of you look lovely in these summer outfits! your shoes are perfect for the brick stone pavement.

    • 18 June 2017 / 20:56

      Those sneakers sure are. When I hit town, I really need flat shoes. Nice to have some fashionable ones as I hate flat shoes (not these ones though).

  4. 18 June 2017 / 20:50

    Love that top! And the sneakers…they’re very similar to my Paul Greens which do the same thing with the sequins. I like using my fingers to make interesting patterns with the flipped sequins.

    • 18 June 2017 / 20:56

      Yes I do that too haha. I am a bit scared the sequins will fall off if I do that too much, but so far so good.

  5. 18 June 2017 / 21:03

    I HATE home renos. I feel your pain.

    Those sneakers are fun!

    You both look marvellous! So nice to see Sylvia for a change as she is rarely featured on her blog now.


    • 18 June 2017 / 21:05

      Everything is good in the house again. Pain gone. Hopefully not for another 10 or 15 years.
      Love my new sneakers. And yes Sylvia isn’t on her blog that much anymore, but you might see her there soon again.

  6. 18 June 2017 / 21:34

    Can you believe I never been to Alkmaar! I know the south of England better then I know my own country!?? What a lovely day you had and what a great outfit Silvia is wearing! I also love that sweater you’re wearing!

    • 18 June 2017 / 21:49

      Thank you so much Nancy. I would certainly see Alkmaar if you get the chance. It is a lovely town with such nice little shops.

  7. 18 June 2017 / 21:57

    Good memories of a wonderful day and those shoes are just soooo good!

    • 18 June 2017 / 22:18

      Thanks Sylvia. Did you see Suzanne’s comment? She misses you on your 40+Style..

  8. Wendy
    18 June 2017 / 22:41

    Love your outfit!

    • 19 June 2017 / 06:08

      Thanks Wendy. I think it is simple and comfortable, yet looking good.

  9. 18 June 2017 / 22:51

    Awww, you both look fabulous! I love Alkmaar, one of my best friends from University is from there, and I’ve been to stay with her and her family there often. She lives in Haarlem now though…

    Anyway! Your top is gorgeous on you, really stylish. I’d stop you in the street and compliment you on the whole outfit if I didn’t know you.

    It won’t surprise you to know I adore Essential Antwerp as well… so much sparkle! so much shiny! so many sequins and crystals! Can’t wait to see what Sylvia bought… xx

    • 19 June 2017 / 06:10

      Yes the gathering of great people is now in Haarlem… ??. Makes it easier for you to see me as well if and when you come over to visit your friend. As for the sequins and Essentiel, yes I did think you would appreciate them.

  10. 18 June 2017 / 22:53

    Hi Greetje! I love your post today…well, I always do love them! πŸ™‚

    I think it was good that the four legged loves were housed out while your floors were done. I imagine it would have been smelly and not too good for anyone. The south of France sounds like a wonderful escape from it all!

    AND….your shoes!!!! They are so much fun! I absolutely love them and I love seeing them with easy red/white/blue pieces! Perfect my dear!

    Happy to see you had fun with Sylvia! Hi Sylvia!!

    • 19 June 2017 / 06:12

      Yes it wasn’t difficult to come up with this outfit. Yet I did, and I am proud to take credits ?. I will make sure Sylvia gets your message.

  11. 18 June 2017 / 23:12

    I love what you are both wearing – you both look fantastic, but together you really seem to have a great synergy, I really also like your sneakers – I like being able to walk and stretch my legs and they look so comfortable, so will have to check out that brand. The lady in black dress and stripes is fabulous – she needs to start a style blog as she is quite lovely too. I have added Alkmaar to my many lists to visit now, it looks wonderful

    • 19 June 2017 / 06:14

      I am becoming an ambassador for the Netherlands, aren’t I? They should pay me ?. And yes, I can highly recommend these sneackers. Super comfortable.

  12. Marjolein Bruens
    19 June 2017 / 03:34

    Lovely pictures in this beautyful town Alkmaar. I really love Alkmaar, such a nice place to walk and shop.
    And you look smashing in red and white. I was in Delft this weekend and I invite you to come and shop and walk with me. I promise you can take some pretty pictures there as well.

    • 19 June 2017 / 13:27

      We will have to do that… when my money level is back to normal ??. Thanks for the compliments!

  13. Marilee Gramith
    19 June 2017 / 05:20

    So, was the guy in the boat naked?
    What a very pretty town Alkmaar is with the added advantage of fun dhopping.
    I sympathized with your “under construction” state of mind. As we get older I think these kinds of disruptions throw us off much more than when we were young.
    I’ve been in the process of packing or purging 30 + years of collected “STUFF” from our current home and readying to a neighboring state. It’s thrown me off my predictable state of normal and raised the stress level A LOT.
    You and Sylvia look so chique and sophisticated off shopping in cute towns. Your posts always feel refreshing Greetje!

    • 19 June 2017 / 06:17

      I do my best to entertain you Jude. And pity on you for the high stress level. Moving is bad. We are now back in a quiet state of mind. Everything is back in its place and looking good. Had the curtains dry cleaned as well, which I think was a smart move. Hang in there girl. You’ll get there too.

      • 19 June 2017 / 13:28

        Oh and the guy was only naked at the top ?

  14. fiona
    19 June 2017 / 08:54

    Alkmaar is certainly quaint and picturesque and you had a beautiful day to catch up with Sylvia. You both look so stylish, I really do love your top…I think I mentioned that last time! The sneakers combine ‘cool’ and comfort… much needed on a shopping trip. Looking forward to your CΓ΄te d’Azur post.

    • 19 June 2017 / 13:31

      Ah… my CΓ΄te d’Azur post might just be delayed another week. I think. A boat trip through Amsterdam is first on the menu. Or am I boring you with that? I have one every year. And ghank you very much for the compliments. Much appreciated.

  15. 19 June 2017 / 09:27

    Great post – loved your outfit and the pretty town. It’s been years since we were there – worth a re-visit! Can’t wait for your South of France post!

    • 19 June 2017 / 14:02

      Most certainly worth a revisit. And eh.. the south of France post might be delayed another week. I am trying to squeeze another boat trip through Amsterdam in.

  16. Liz
    19 June 2017 / 16:13

    I love your blog. It is very entertaining. I love seeing your outfits. You are a very stylish lady. I love pictures of you having fun hanging out with your friends. I love the street style pictures. Also, I love your humor and your pictures of the Netherlands. I hope to go there someday. As you can see, I love everything about your blog.

    • 20 June 2017 / 01:17

      It’s comments like this that make blogging so nice!! Thank you so much. You made my day.

    • 20 June 2017 / 01:17

      Thanks Geneva. So much for age appropriate, right?

  17. 20 June 2017 / 01:58

    I love that you ended the post with one of you laughing – it’s the way I picture you best. Those thrifted trousers look perfect for a day out shopping and hanging out with Sylvia. Funny that you both chose matching clothes. And the shoes, of course you know I am weak for them too. Great shots of you two together.

    Alkmaar is a breathtakingly beautiful place. Wouldn’t I love to visit you some day.

    PS I’m glad you didn’t jump down into that man’s boat. You would have wrecked your pants.

    • 20 June 2017 / 12:31

      I am strictly monogamous. Besides… he was far too young. Would have made me so conscious of all my flaws and wrinkled skin. No thank you. But one can look, right?
      I so hope you will visit my country (and me) one day. Would be a blast.

  18. 20 June 2017 / 15:01

    It’s a funny pair of sneakers! I think sneakers are the only kind of shoes that are missing in my closet…Yours are lovely , I am wondering how they would match to my clothes…

    Very nice city! You two look so pretty!

    • 21 June 2017 / 06:08

      I always think that metallic shoes and clothes go with everything. Gold, but especially silver. And they have a bit more elegance than just plain white.

  19. 21 June 2017 / 13:49

    How much fun your shopping trip looks – I think you should both come to Zurich so I can give you a tour around the shops πŸ˜‰ Or better still we meet in Neuchatel together – the shops there looked amazing – I went Monday and met the most adorable tour guide Christine who I am sure would love to meet you too!

    Love your outfit too – it’s too hot for trousers here right now but we have to enjoy the heat whilst it lasts.


    • 21 June 2017 / 23:15

      It is hot here as well. Indeed we do enjoy this kind of weather as usually it doesn’t last very long in The Netherlands. We would certainly have a good time in Zurich of Neuchatel. I need some bank funding though ??. Thanks for the compliments.

  20. Christine
    21 June 2017 / 21:07

    I like your outfit and Sylvia’s outfit too. Your shoes are really special. I look forward to seeing how you style them with other outfits. I have loved seeing how women are styling sneakers with casual dresses. I would like to see whether and how you would style thes fabulous shoes with a dress or skirt. Also, your photos of this charming town make me want to vacation in your beautiful country.

    • 21 June 2017 / 23:19

      If you ever do spend your holiday in my country, then pray for good weather. It isn’t always this gorgeous. Our country is very green. Lots of trees, plants etc. Which is because it rains a lot. But.. if the sun does shine, it is a splendid little country.
      Styling these sneakers with a dress or skirt… hmm, I don’t think that is my kind of outfit. I have worn them with 7/8 white trousers and a big, wide, long striped “dress” (very oversized). That looked good.

  21. 23 June 2017 / 02:04

    Such a nice top! Looking at these photos makes me miss Europe and European fashion even more. Now I’m living in Canada I don’t have the same access to my favourite styles. I love the collar on that top, very spanish inspired πŸ™‚

    • 23 June 2017 / 03:19

      What fun, a man with interest in women’s fashion. This top is a simple COS top, the shoes are my favourite.

      • 25 June 2017 / 05:34

        Haha! I spend most of my time dealing with guys fashion, but I find womens more interesting. It moves faster and girls seem to be willing to experiment more!

        • 25 June 2017 / 13:05

          I agree. Als woman have much more possibilities.

  22. 25 June 2017 / 17:23

    Sounds like your home renovation was a great excuse for everyone to get away for a few days, and it sounds like everyone except the cat had a good time. Alkmaar looks like a very pretty little town, and you and Sylvie were so beautifully coordinated, I can’t believe you didn’t arrange it ahead of time. I saw your new shoes on your Instagram and I really like the thick sole and reversible sequins. I will have to check out the website of the store.

    • 3 July 2017 / 21:10

      We could have arranged ahead of time what we were to wear, but didn’t. Ah.. you know what they say: Great minds think alike. Big grin.
      Don’t check out the website of Essentiel…. it is so dangerous. For your wallet.

  23. Trish
    3 July 2017 / 10:38

    I love all the outfits in your post, Greetje. Yours is eye catching as always, especially the shoes. Are they comfy too? I like Sylvia’s blue outfit…you really coordinated this time. I also love the lady in the black and leggings outfit. Sons never really understand! Looks like a great day out, and sunny!

    • 3 July 2017 / 21:12

      We are very lucky this time Sylvia visits. Really beautiful weather. Makes such a city shopping day so much nicer. And yes the sequined sneakers are very comfortable. Even with bare feet (says the woman who always get blisters).

  24. 22 August 2017 / 07:23

    Love your outfit!

    As you know by now, this style and kind of look is one of your best: contemporary, stylish Greetje.

    • 23 August 2017 / 07:11

      Flatterer πŸ˜ŠπŸ˜ŠπŸ˜ŠπŸ˜‰. Thanks Anja.

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