Vans sneakers are the rare exception of shoes to reach true icon status. They first started to gain popularity in the 1970s among the skater crowd in California. The 1980s strengthened the West Coast’s admiration for these shoes with the help of the movie Fast Times at Ridgemont High where the main character, portraying a surfer/stoner persona, wore black-and-white checkered Vans religiously. Since this time, many different colors and styles have evolved while still containing the cool, punk-meets-beach designs.
This Fashionisto was spotted around campus sporting a unique yet easily identifiable pair of Vans sneakers. Today’s Fashionisto’s sneakers fit into Vans’ category “OTW.” OTW is an acronym that stands for “Off The Wall.” When Steve Van Doren was asked what this slogan meant, he explained that it was a saying skaters back in the mid ’70s used to stay when riding pools because they were literally coming Off The Wall! The Bedford Tribes are another great pair of OTW Vans shoes with a mid-top modern look.
The first pair of Vans sneakers to come out was named Authentic. Still to this day, three decades later, Canvas Authentic’s are still around with the same simple, stylish, low top lace-up design. What is so great about the Authentic sneakers is that they come in more than 30 different colors! For the more classical skaters out there, the Checkboard Slip-On’s are perfect for you. They have effortlessly become a part of the skate culture’s present-day style.
Vans also have a wide variety of shoes for surfers and the beach. Their Surf Palm Chauffeurs represent typical boat shoes, emphasizing their comfort.
Spotted: Although Louis Vuitton and Vans seem like complete opposites in term of their styles—Vans attracting more skaters and surfers and Louis Vuitton attracting chic, luxurious celebrities— in the Louis Vuitton spring 2013 menswear collection, the male models continuously came out in sport like sneakers and surfer-friendly boat shoes. I loved how Louis Vuitton was able to combine the casual, comfortable shoes with professional attire.