People have quite outspoken opinions, either positive or negative, about regional costumes. Since the end of the 18th century, many painters and writers, both in and outside the Netherlands, chose ‘ordinary country people’ as the subject matter for their studies.
Vincent van Gogh collected working clothes and regional costumes for his paintings. In 1884, he criticized the commercial bent of those who sold photograph albums featuring ‘Dutch regional costumes’ to foreigners.
Although traditional regional costumes have almost disappeared in the Netherlands, they are still regarded as a symbol of quality, thrift and neatness. On the one hand, folkloric groups endeavor to hold on to and propagate the image of lost regional costumes and, on the other hand, many fashion designers have drawn inspiration in recent years from the old models and patters.