If you’re in the market for Vans, check out eBay’s selection of shoes, clothing, and accessories. Vans has been the brand of choice for several sports beginning in 1966, when the art and science of skateboarding became a serious cultural study in California. There were later designs for surfing, snowboarding, BMX, and motocross. Whether you or a family member are looking for a classic pair of Vans Old Skools™ to walk around the city in or a Vans backpack to stash weekend gear in, find the Vans equipment you need and want on eBay.
The rallying cry of “Off the Wall” has become the anthem for Vans fans around the world, whose love of sport and individual creative expression made them part of the rising subculture. Vans t-shirts, hoodies, backpacks, hats, and socks join the slip-ons, lace-ups, hi- and low-tops designed by cartoonists, rappers, and even Disney imagineers. With Vans, you know the collaborator is going to be more than just a fashionista or movie star (although they may be both). They design the gear that they want to wear.
Collaborators and a Bit of History
Vans started as the Van Doren Rubber Company in Anaheim, California, in 1966, selling directly to the public. Their approach to business was personal. They produced deck shoes in their own factory, which they sold directly to the public, on a custom-ordered basis. The customers would select the style (from only three choices in those days), size, and color in the morning and return in the afternoon to pick up the shoes. The first day they were in business, they sold twelve pairs of shoes. In the afternoon, when customers came back to pick them up, the Van Doren brothers realized they didn’t have change to give these first buyers. They gave them the shoes and asked that they come back and pay for them the next day. All twelve did. It’s that kind of company.
Although Vans is now a brand known throughout the world, their approach to collaborations has remained true to their original philosophy.
- 2001 -- Vans Authentic was designed for the premiere of Lords of Dogtown in Park City.
- 2005 -- In an unusual triple collaboration among Raf Simons, Colette Meets and COMME des GARÇONS, Vans released 100 pairs of Colette Meets x COMME des GARÇONS slip-ons in Japan.
- The hip-hop group Public Enemy joined with Supreme to release two color versions of the Sk8-Hi in 2006. These were produced along with matching apparel and a skateboard deck as well.
- When The Simpsons Movie came out in 2007, Vans was ready, having linked with the show’s artists to produce 14 Simpsons-derived sneakers.
- The cartoonist Robert Crumb came onboard for awhile in 2012 to create the special collection Vans x Robert Crumb.
- In 2014, Vans teamed up with the American hip-hop collective, Odd Future, to create Vans x Odd Future.
- Engineered Garments worked their mismatched magic on Vans Slip-ons and Sk8-Hi LX styles in 2016, using different materials on the left and right shoes with subtly different tones.
- 2017 brought BLENDS into the design room to work a premium black leather version of the Style 36 Old School LX. This design product was limited to BLENDS stores.
Other important and limited collaborators are: Murakami, Liberty, Gosha Rubchinskiy, Kenzo, Winnie the Pooh, Charles Schulz’ Peanuts, Iron Maiden, Metallica, and Bad Brains.
Fifty Years of Fun
In 2016, Vans celebrated their 50th anniversary. They hosted parties in Austin, Brooklyn, Cape Town, Hong Kong, Mexico City, Toronto, London, São Paulo, Seoul, and Kuala Lumpur. A few of the bands rocking were Wu-Tang Clan, Nas, the Kills, Dinosaur Jr., Erykah Badu, and Questlove, among the 90 groups around the world invited to entertain that night. To commemorate the half-century of popular skate shoes’ “Off the Wall” consciousness, and creative design, Vans is re-releasing their most popular shoe styles:
- AUTHENTIC – 1966 (original model)
- ERA - 1976
- CLASSIC SLIP-ON Debut: 1977
- OLD SKOOL Debut: 1977
- SK8-HI Debut: 1978
- HALF CAB Debut: 1992
- CHUKKA LOW Debut: 2006
- ALOMAR Debut: 2010
- NEXPA (flip flop sandal) Debut: 2011
- CHIMA PRO Debut: 2013
How did Vans become the favorite of skateboarders?
In the early days, skateboarders tried out Vans and liked them. The company decided to give away free pairs of Vans in their Santa Monica store in the Muscle Beach area. The word spread fast. The Van Doren brothers were committed to their skating buyers. For example, if a skater had worn down one shoe, he could buy a single replacement for half the price of a full pair of shoes—$3 for the one shoe, in those days. In addition, the company has regularly hosted skate clinics and even opened a free public skate park in Huntington Beach, California.
How has Vans become such a cultural and artistic brand?
Vans has sponsored the ever-growing Warped Tour traveling rock fest since 1996, creating a venue for break-out musicians to showcase their work. Their choices of collaborators, too, have included artists, musicians, and designers from around the world.
What kind of Vans accessories can I find on eBay?
So, whether you’re skateboarding or skating by, surfing the waves or the T.V. channels, slipping on a pair of Vans is likely to keep you feeling laid back and ready for life. Check out eBay for the best of Vans.