How to Look Like a Local in Amsterdam

Travel Tips, What's New — By Anna Bandurska on October 18, 2010 at 12:55 am

Fashion in Amsterdam is very eclectic, in part due to the multicultural nature of the city.  With so many interesting characters roaming equally interesting neighborhoods such as the Red Light District, it’s difficult to shock or stand out too much with whatever you may be wearing.

That being said, there is definitely a trend in what the locals are wearing.  Weather in Amsterdam is incredibly fickle, and even on a sunny day, it can still rain in a matter of hours.  Because of these rapid changes, it’s wise to dress in layers.  Another important consideration is comfort; most locals get around by bike, so you want freedom of movement in whatever you’re wearing.

A typical outfit for a girl in Amsterdam consists of:

  • Layered tops
  • Skinny jeans
  • Boots

The basic Amsterdam (girly) uniform: boots, skinny jeans, layered tops.

And for the boys:

  • Graphic tee or button down shirt
  • Jeans
  • Flashy sneakers

If you find yourself in need of new fashion in Amsterdam, the Kalverstraat and Nieuwendijk are the two main shopping streets in the city.  With a good blend of local boutiques and international chains, you will be able to find anything you may have forgotten from home to create a new (or complement an existing) outfit with a bit of Amsterdam style.

Stay away from anything that says “Amsterdam”, “Nederland” or has the three XXX’s of Amsterdam on it.  These items are fine as souvenirs, but no locals would ever wear them (unless you’re going to a soccer game, but then you have to chose your side carefully).

And finally, for obvious reasons, don’t wear anything with text in a language you don’t understand.