26 Vans Releases

2 TBA Vans Releases

24 Vans Sneakers already released

Vans – from sidewalk to catwalk

He was always late, ordered pizza into the classroom, and even fell off the school bus while he was stoned. Surfer Jeff, aka Sean Penn, with his chessboard sneakers, caused a lot of trouble in the 1982 film “I Think I’m Standing in the Woods” – and made the Vans famous overnight. Contrary to glamorous billboard advertising and outrageously expensive commercials, Vans made a dent in the rubber industry and everyone wanted to get hold of a pair of these casual sneakers – the absolute breakthrough for the founders. 

Today, Vans sneakers are an integral part of sneaker stores and have well-deserved cult status among sneakerheads. In this article we will tell you what makes the brand so unique and which highlights are hidden among the models.

Surfing, outdoor vibe and the Californian sun

Amid the California surf vibe of the Sixties, brothers Paul and Jim Van Doren, along with two business partners, founded the Van Doren Rubber Company in Anaheim in 1966. Paul, a high school dropout, needed the know-how he had gained while working in a shoe factory and as vice president of an American shoe company. With their casual Californian style and unconventional marketing, they not only achieved great fame among skaters, but also in the fashion world.

The breakthrough as a skate shoe

The first Vans was the #44 Deck – a boat shoe.  For this, a new process was developed and the robust sole was made by vulcanization. Very quickly, word of the new silhouette spread through the skater scene due to its non-slip sole and individual styles, ensuring that the shoe was already widely used in the seventies. Now renamed Vans Authentic, the sneaker is still one of the most popular silhouettes.

The connection to the skater scene was evident in many more models and specializations for use as skate shoes. Proud Vans owners could even just reorder a shoe when it was worn out. Such a thing had never happened before and once again showed the unconventional nature and hands-on mentality of the company. 

From the skateboard to the catwalk

In the seventies, the logo “Off the wall”, which still exists today, sees the light of day and the famous Old Skool is launched. For the first time, the shoe bears the typical side stripe that Paul had designed. A short time later, the first Vans Slip-On comes out – and gains absolute cult status due to the onslaught of skaters and BMXers. 

After the appearance of Vans in the movie “I think I’m standing in the forest”, the fashion world slowly became aware of the shoe. Meanwhile, they are one of the most worn sneakers on the catwalks and there have been collabos with greats like Kenzo or Marc Jacobs. Nevertheless, Vans have always remained true to their style and produce their shoes for those who made them great: Skaters. 

The most popular Vans silhouettes

Vans are probably one of the few shoes that have completely unintentionally stormed the lifestyle section and are always spotted on stars like Justin Bieber or Gigi Hadid. However, with their absolutely robust sole, Vans High variants and chill design without frills, they are still celebrated by many skaters.

They were also the ones who inspired the later hyped Checkerboard pattern: To make the Vans even more individual, skaters drew a checkerboard pattern on their Vans with felt pen. The company found this so mega that they made the design a permanent part of their production.

 At the beginning of the 2000s, the company went one better: Vans launched “Vans Customs” for all those who want to design their classic slip-ons with an individual colorway of different color and pattern combinations. So everyone who likes to do their own thing gets their money’s worth. Nevertheless, the classic skate shoes from Vans remain the absolute favs!

Vans Old Skool

For those who like it more discreet or plain Vans in white or black, land on the Old Skool. The model owes its cult status to the fact that it was the first Vans sneaker to feature the typical side stripe and, of course, the Checkerboard pattern. It is considered a milestone for the company and all subsequent models.

This silhouette comes with a canvas and suede upper and is now available in many colorways. Skaters celebrate them because of the reinforced toe caps, which protect against too fast wear, and the rubber outsole in characteristic waffle design.

The Vans Sk8 Hi

This silhouette is launched in the late seventies and brings an important feature for skaters: DEr Sk8 Hi namely goes to above the ankles, where the foot has to take the most. The heels are additionally padded and reinforced toe caps ensure that the Vans Sk8 Hi lasts a long time.

The classic model later became Vans winter shoes or all-weather shoes. They have improved thermal regulation and protect against moisture with the new MTE-1 HydroGuard™ coating. And of course, the robust sole provides the necessary grip. 

Vans Slip-On

Even before the Netflix series “Squid Game”, the Vans Slip-On had already created an absolute hype: their launch in the seventies ideally matched the beach vibe in California and triggered total enthusiasm. The mix of sneaker and slip-on style was new and everyone wanted the casual and comfortable look.

But the shoes are not only comfortable, but also provide good grip on the board due to the padded edge and the non-slip sole. The canvas upper and the elastic side inserts make the slip-on an absolute all-rounder.

Authenticity as a driver of success

Vans belongs as a matter of course in every sneaker store and can even be found in designer stores through famous collabos. Despite special collections like the Simpsons x Vans or the Eco Theory, the company has always remained true to itself and has not jumped on every trend. The mission of Vans has always been to listen closely to their target group and to produce shoes for their needs. And that is still the case today and has earned Vans a unique standing in the skater scene and ensured absolute cult in the lifestyle sector. A truly authentic label that loves what it does!

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