When Vans shoes were initially designed, the primary goal of the Van Doren brothers was to create a shoe that would withstand hard usage. After being featured in the cult classic Fast Times at Ridgemont High the Vans brand became iconic and millions of shoes were sold. Though the company experienced a series of setbacks they remained viable by shifting focus to the sponsorship of events (the Warped Tour) and various extreme sporting events. After paying professional skateboarders to wear their shoes Vans became heavily associated with the skating community. In recent years Vans popularity has expanded to include the urban community as well.
Introduction to Fashion
The creators of Vans have stated often that they never intended for their shoe to become a staple in the fashion industry. Rather than courting designers Vans found itself in the unique position of having leaders in the world of fashion approach their company. Ultimately it was the simplicity and durability of the Vans design that caught the attention of various brands. Various collaborations with designers introduced Vans to the fashion industry while simultaneously exposing more people to skate culture and styles.
In spring of 2016 urban fashion became enamored with the all-white sneaker. The stark simplicity of white sneakers inspired designers and was seen on runways around the world. When designer Vans were placed in boutiques next to industry juggernauts like Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Prada urban stylists began pairing Vans with their own designs. Before long Vans were being worn to red carpet events by rappers, musicians, and other members of the hip hop community.
Vans, especially all-white styles, began growing in popularity within urban fashion circles during the summer of 2016. Now they are streetwear retailers are actively pairing Vans with some of the biggest names in urban fashion. On the west coast, a place known for pioneering skater styles, boutique owners specializing in selling streetwear are noticing an increased interest in Vans among those familiar with urban fashion trends. By the spring 2017 season we expect to see Vans featured in fashion events showcasing the latest urban styles.