Welcome to Atelier de Groot

We are Jan Gerhard and Martha de Groot, brother and sister, and the second generation of Atelier de Groot. Our parents, Piet and Reino de Groot, opened a shoemaker’s shop in the Frisian water sports village of Grou in 1965. After a few years they were given the opportunity to move the shoemaker’s shop to Harlingen, directly on the Wadden Sea.

The origin of Atelier de Groot

In the early years of the shoemaker’s Atelier de Groot, not only shoes were repaired, but many skates were also sold in the winter. In addition, our parents received unique assignments such as making large leather bell hangers for Frisian horse-drawn sleighs, making sturdy leather bags for customers and making leather parts for Frisian wooden skates. Due to the quality and craftsmanship that we could offer, we quickly grew into a household name in Harlingen.

The passion for craft is in the blood

As a little boy, Jan Gerhard could often be found in the workshop with the parents. He followed various training courses and soon started working in the company. Martha went into administration and worked in the human resources department of a paper processing company. After a few years she became more and more interested in the craft and went to study Leatherworking in Den Bosch together with our mother Reino. This is where we learned to design and make small leather goods and bags. Their enthusiasm was contagious and Jan Gerhard also began to delve into the craft. We started selling belts and bags in the shop and at various fairs such as the Home & Garden and La Table in Naarden.

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Atelier de Groot specialises in leather belts

Through the experience we gained when selling the belts, we discovered the demand for tailor-made quality belts. Since then, we have specialised in custom handmade leather belts. First only through our shop in Harlingen, where the belts are also made, but soon after also via our webshop! Our handmade belts are worn throughout the Netherlands, but also the United Kingdom and Germany… and we continue to make them with a passion! A family tradition that doesn’t stop!

Brother and sister Jan Gerhard & Martha de Groot | Photo: Marry Kramer