“Some days I’m in my Yeezys/Some days I’m in my Vans”
So raps Kanye West on No More Parties in L.A. It’s an unexpected name drop for someone on the payroll of adidas, but it’s testament to Vans' crossover appeal: a global superstar at the apex of music, fashion and all things hype also rocks a humble pair of canvas sneakers atop a vulcanised sole. So why are Vans so popular?
They’re the perfect counterpoint to Kanye’s much sought after Yeezy sneakers—Vans don’t sell for in excess of £1,000 or have hordes of youths camping out overnight for them, but you will see them sported by style arbiters such as Mr West, model-slash-stylist Luka Sabbat, and Supreme skate team’s Alex Olson.
And that’s where the inherent charm of the Californian skate brand lies, they are accessible, versatile and timeless. Wonderfully democratic and refreshingly removed from disposable trends, you never need to worry that your favourite Old Skools or Authentics will be snapped up in minutes and held to ransom by resellers. From the Kanyes to the Damn Daniels of this world, they are a failsafe accompaniment to any outfit.
Vans are decidedly no-nonsense and resolutely hard-wearing—there are few shoes that look just as good battered and bruised as they do when you pop open the cardboard box and peel back the tissue paper to reveal a box-fresh pair. There’s no need for bottles of sneaker-restoring formula or special shoehorns, let them live and tell their own story.