The Ballad of the Keukenrolhouder

Whether it’s Paris or Amsterdam, life as an expat is all about small victories. Paper towel holders and all!

Terrifically Lost


This is the story of a paper towel holder. Or, as it’s known here in the Netherlands, a keukenrolhouder (literally, a “kitchen towel holder”). We have spent the past three months searching for this simple, humble item. We hit up every home goods or cooking store we’ve stumbled across, not just in Amsterdam but in Haarlem, Maastricht, and Utrecht. We scoured every corner of IKEA: nothing. We even considered trying to make one ourselves. And all that time, our sad, untethered roll of paper towels skitted and slid across our counter-top, sometimes falling over, or messily unrolling itself.

Then, finally, we discovered, the local equivalent of Amazon. And even though the site is only in Dutch or Belgian, we managed to search, locate, order, and arrange shipment of the keukenrolhouder! It arrived today. I am disproportionately happy about the appearance of this item in my kitchen.

It hasn’t been…

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  1. coteetcampagne · July 30, 2015

    No, I get that absolutely, sometimes it’s the littlest things.
    Currently, we don’t have a keukenrolhouder ourselves and I am loathe to buy ANYTHING superfluous as we will hopefully be elsewhere very soon
    Each time one of our rolls goes skittering over the kitchen floor, the air is blue

    • MELewis · July 30, 2015

      Yes, it is indeed a different set of challenges if you then have to move all the stuff – or leave it behind. I do hate moving! That said, I find it impossible to live out of a suitcase and the keukenrolhouders of this world seem to be more essential to me than they should be. Hopefully you’ll be settled soon. Keep me posted on your next move!

      • coteetcampagne · July 30, 2015

        Will do
        My blog followers will probably be the first to know!

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