This December iconic Dutch department store HEMA and KK Outlet will export one of Holland’s lesser known traditions: Sinterklaas, a mythic figure related to our Santa Claus.

Santa Claus is known the world over, but it’s a little known fact that he was brought to America by Dutch immigrants in the nineteenth century. To the Dutch, he is known as Sinterklaas, and in Dutch tradition, he arrives at the beginning of December with his helper Piet to reward all the well behaved children of Holland.

He is received in rapturous ceremonies across all of Holland, something KK Outlet and HEMA will recreate on Hoxton Square.

Sinterklaas will arrive on horseback at KK Outlet. His flying visit will take place on Thursday 2 December, visitors to KK Outlet are welcomed to take part in Sinterklaas related practices, such as leaving a spare shoe in the gallery overnight, which on their return will be full of gifts from Sinterklaas and creating poems out of large chocolate type.

As well as Sinterklaas’s personal appearance there’ll be an exhibition of the best Sinterklaas related oddities, from a large wall of chocolate typeface to the best (and most kitsch) festive designs and products provided by HEMA and available to buy.

If you don’t know what HEMA is, picture a cross between IKEA, Woolworths and Muji and you’re just about there.

London at Christmas has much to offer but up until now has lacked two important things, Sinterklaas and HEMA. From 2 December this will all change…

The exhibition and display of HEMA products will run throughout December and is open to all.


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