Local Heart, Global Soul

July 11, 2012

Fire and Water Dreams…

Whilst in the “Dreams”shop in Maungaturoto, I spied a really interesting water feature and candle holder. I’m not sure how the candles would hold up if the wall it was hung onto was in a windy position but I just like the idea, all rustic, rough and unpolished.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)



March 4, 2011

Tiles that are So Much More than just Holes in the Wall…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

About a year ago I made a blog post that featured the old fashioned oddity that is our traditional Dutch toilet….


… And I’m happy to report that yep, it still startles unsuspecting non-dutch visitors.

Not that we hear actual screams like those that one four and a half year old managed upon her first encounter, rather it’s sometimes a wry smile from adults and maybe a comment along the lines of: ” that’s one rather unusual convenience you have there isn’t it?”

As I mentioned in the link, this style of toilet is fast disappearing because  newer styles of bathrooms and toilets are in high vogue …

and not surprisingly this not longer fits with the chrome, stark and chiseled modernism and whiter than white that is all the rage today.

Call me a dinosaur but these  “old fashioned” features nay, lets  do a little re-branding and call them “historical”  features…   … are I believe, something to hang onto.. a heritage that is quickly and easily lost and difficult to replace once gone.

Of course, if you have a modern new-build home then that’s another story completely, but ours is a typical 1930’s Dutch “portiek woning” that happens to have almost every last original feature intact ,so as much as it’s humanly possible we intend on keeping it that way.

Another one of the old features that are fast disappearing from Dutch homes are wall tiles,  which in our house come in two styles:  the soap holders, which we have  in our minuscule kitchen  and also the shower and the toilet-roll holder.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Both are built directly into the wall.

I first tried to take photos of the toilet-roll holder with a full roll on it, but the roll hides the curves of the inner part of the tile and you can’t see any detail, so I tried again with the roll nearing empty …

The original wooden dowel holds the roll, at each end there are two tiny pegs that slot into holes on the sides of the tile.

Ingeniously there is a little spring mechanism inside the wooden dowel, so to remove the roll you simply push it to one end, the spring compresses and the rod pops out so that you can add a new roll.

To put it back, place one peg in the hole, push gently to compress it, slot in the other peg at the other end,  let go,  it resumes it’s normal size and stays in place.

The soap holders have a little hole in the centre of the bit that juts out from the wall, water drains though the hole.

Our hand soap is of the liquid variety so we use the kitchen soap holders as a good place to put the pot scrub/sponge thingy.

I know, I know, I’m easily pleased, but as the saying goes:  “small things amuse small minds”  !

But  it IS part of a very Dutch tradition that is dying out, so I figure that I’m just doing my bit for keeping history alive.

Welcome to the Kiwidutch Museum LOL !

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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