off the wall — since 1966.
the story of
1966 - when it all started
Brothers Paul Van Doren and Jim Van Doren along with partners Gordon Lee and Serge Delia open for business at 704 E. Broadway in Anaheim, Calif. on March 16. The Van Doren Rubber Company is unique in that it manufactures shoes on premises and sells them directly to the public.
On that first morning, 12 customers purchase shoes, which are made that day and ready for pick-up in the afternoon.
VANS #44 DECK SHOES, NOW KNOWN AS THE AUTHENTIC, ARE BORN.
The name House of Vans is coined Early 70s Skateboarders who like Vans' rugged make-up and sticky sole are seen sporting for the first time and is showcased on the windows of the Anaheim location.
SKATEBOARDERS WHO LIKE VANS' RUGGED MAKE-UP AND STICKY SOLE ARE SEEN SPORTING VANS ALL OVER SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA.
The Vans #95, now known as the Era, with a padded collar and different color combinations, is designed by Tony Alva and Stacy Peralta and becomes the shoe of choice for a generation of skateboarders.
VANS' "OFF THE WALL" LOGO MAKES ITS DEBUT.
VANS' "OFF THE WALL" LOGO MAKES ITS DEBUT.
Vans #36, the Old Skool, debuts with the now famous Vans Sidestripe. The Old Skool is Vans' first skate shoe that incorporated leather panels for increased durability. What started as a random doodle by Paul Van Doren was originally referred to as the "jazz stripe" and has become the unmistakable hallmark of the Vans brand.
The Vans #98 is also introduced and with the help of skateboarders and BMX riders, Vans Classic Slip-Ons become the rage in Southern California and will come to be the original Slip-On silhouette that will be known as an icon for generations.
The Sk8-Hi was introduced in 1978 as "Style 38," and showcased the now-iconic Vans Sidestripe on yet another innovative silhouette. As only the second model featuring the recognizable marker formerly known as the "jazz stripe," the Sk8-Hi took skate functionality to the next levelâabove the ankle, where skateboarders used and abused their lower extremities the most. The Sk8-Hi not only shielded bones from skateboards catapulted at them but also brought a whole new look to the park.
Vans’ most iconic style was introduced to the world in Fast Times at Ridgemont High. California’s youth culture, along with the Classic Slip-On, became a widespread phenomenon thanks to a surfer and his kicks. The instantly recognizable checkerboard pattern became an icon over night.
Vans files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Although the core Vans shoes are selling well, the wide range of products that Vans offers have drained company resources and Vans is not able to overcome debt.
Courts approve re-organization plan as Paul Van Doren returns as President; Paul tells all employees that they may not get a raise for three years and they will need to cut back on everything but the quality of Vans shoes.
The Vans Steve Caballero, the first signature skate shoe, is introduced. Vans introduces weather resistant materials to footwear labeled Mountain Edition for the first time.
Vans brings the Warped Tour to the main-stage for the first time.
VANS SPONSORS THE INAUGURAL TRIPLE CROWN OF SKATEBOARDING EVENT.
Vans and Supreme launch long-term partnership with a series of co-branded Old Skools.
VANS OPENS FIRST OF ITS KIND, 46,000 SQUARE-FOOT INDOOR/OUTDOOR VANS SKATEPARK AT THE BLOCK AT ORANGE MALL IN ORANGE COUNTY.
Daniel Franck wins Olympic Silver Medal in Vans snowboard boots at the Nagano Games.
Vans assists with the production of "Dogtown and Z-Boys," Stacy Peralta's look at the beginnings of skateboarding and the personalities that evolved the sport. The film takes the Audience Award and Best Director Award at the Sundance Film Festival.
Vans skate team embarks on its first-ever international tour when the Pleased to Meet You Tour hits seven countries in Europe and then returns to the States for stops in 30 cities.
Vans launches the Vault by Vans collection, an offering of timeless footwear melding the worlds of high-fashion and premium design to Vans' classic silhouettes. Today, Vault by Vans continues to forge innovative partnerships, with past collaborators including fashion giants such as Marc Jacobs, and contemporary artist Takashi.
Vans launches Vans Customs at www.vans.com, allowing would be fashion designers to create their own Classic Slip-ons utilizing hundreds of different color and pattern combinations. In October, the Old Skool is added to styles available.
In an event that many in the skate industry claim may be the best bowl contest of all time, Rune Glifberg, Chris Miller and Cara-Beth Burnside are winners at the inaugural Pro-tec Pool Party in the replica of the legendary and dearly-departed Combi Bowl at the Vans Skatepark at the Block at Orange. The May 14 event takes place in front of a packed house and draws a throng of past masters and top pros.
VANS CELEBRATES 40 YEARS AT THE HEART OF YOUTH CULTURE.
Long known as the leader in action sports footwear, Vans launches an extensive apparel collection for both men and women. Pro skater Anthony Van Engelen becomes the first team rider for Vans Apparel.
Vans renews old acquaintances when legendary skater Christian Hosoi joins the team. Skaters celebrate by snapping up the limited edition Hosoi Rising Sun Sk8-Hi.
Recognizing the cultural relevance of the Vans Warped Tour and its significance to the punk-rock and skate community, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland opens an exhibit documenting the Tour's first 12 years.
Vans releases perhaps its most anticipated special collection to date with the Vans x The Simpsons series that features artwork from Kaws, Stash, Gary Panter, Geoff McFetridge, Dave Flores, Futura, Mr. Cartoon, Sam Messner, Taka Hayashi, Tony Munoz, Todd James and Neckface.
VANS BRINGS ITS BRAND OF YOUTH CULTURE TO CHINA WITH THE OPENING OF THE FIRST VANS RETAIL STORE IN SHANGHAI.
Long-time Vans surf team rider Joel Tudor signs on as the first surfer on Vans' apparel program.
HARRY N. ABRAMS PUBLISHES "VANS: OFF THE WALL, STORIES OF SOLE FROM VANS ORIGINALS" WHICH RECOUNTS THE STORY OF THE MANY ACTION SPORTS LEGENDS, ARTISTS AND MUSICIANS WHO HAVE HELPED SHAPE VANS AS AN ICON OF CALIFORNIA CULTURE. THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY SEES THE BOOK REISSUED WITH NEW CHAPTERS AND A LIMITED EDITION COVER, AVAILABLE TO BUY NOW.
Vans opens the House of Vans event space in Brooklyn, NY with music by Public Enemy and a hard charging bowl session headlined by skate legends Tony Alva, Steve Caballero and Omar Hassan.
Vans releases its first-ever surf film, "Get-N Classic, Vol. 1" featuring the Gudauskas brothers, Joel Tudor, John Florence and the rest of the Vans surf team. Vans surf program is clicking on all cylinders with the addition of the team's first Australian in Wade Goodall and one of the most exciting surfers in the world, Dane Reynolds.
Vans introduces the first vulcanized cupsole. The new WAFFLECUP™ technology combines the best of both worlds with the support and durability of a cupsole and the superior boardfeel and grip of the traditional Vans vulcanized shoe.
Vans collaborates with rock band Metallica. Each Metallica member - James Hetfield, Lars Ulrich, Kirk Hammett and Robert Trujillo - designs his own shoe and collaborates with Vans athletes including Pat Moore, Steve Caballero, Nathan Fletcher and Tony Trujillo for a special OffTheWall.TV series further defining what is means to be a part of the Vans family.
Vans teams up with Disney for a Fall 2013 collaboration featuring some of the most beloved Disney characters such as Mickey Mouse, Winnie the Pooh and Donald Duck on Vans' classic shoes bringing back designs from the late 80's that had been lost from the archives.
Professional skateboarder Chima Ferguson and Vans create the Chima Pro shoe collection, the first signature pro model in six years.
IOURI 'IPOD' PODLADTCHIKOV WINS GOLD AT THE SOCHI OLYMPIC GAMES WEARING VANS SNOWBOARD BOOTS DETHRONING PREVIOUS GOLD MEDALIST SHAUN WHITE.
Vans teams up with the Beatles franchise to create the Spring 2014 The Beatles Yellow Submarine by Vans collection inspired by the iconic artwork from The Yellow Submarine album and film.
In May, Vans celebrates the 10th annual Vans Pool Party, and introduced a Legends division for the first time. Legend winners are Chris Miller, Jeff Grosso, and Christian Hosoi. Master winners are Bruno Passos, Brian Patch, and Darren Navarette.
Legendary Skateboarder Geoff Rowley joins the brand's impressive apparel program. Geoff Rowley-one hundred percent Skateboarder, now one hundred percent Vans
Vans takes off to a galaxy far, far away for an out-of-this-world collection featuring artwork from the original Star Wars trilogy. The Force is strong with Vans, offering products that extends from Classics and Vault by Vans footwear to men's apparel and women's accessories. By combining heritage Vans prints with iconic Star Wars characters, both entities present a truly unique capsule this universe has not yet seen.
In August, House of Vans London, a 3,000sqm art, music and skate space under Waterloo station opens in London's creative playground. Representing the eclectic diversity of London and the cultures that have embraced Vans from its humble beginnings, through five decades, House of Vans opens with a showcase of creativity and a commitment to nurturing its next generation.
VANS, IS CHOSEN AS "BRAND OF THE YEAR" BY FOOTWEAR NEWS DURING THE TRADE PUBLICATION'S ANNUAL ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS IN DECEMBER 2014. CAROL LIM AND HUMBERTO LEON OF OPENING CEREMONY AND CREATIVE DIRECTORS BEHIND KENZO, PRESENT THE AWARD TO VANS PRESIDENT KEVIN BAILEY.
In May 2015, Vans makes skateboarding history with the highly anticipated launch of PROPELLER: A Vans Skateboarding Video, Vans' first-ever skateboarding film. This momentous occasion saw valuable international exposure for the Vans Pro Skate Team and even more global recognition for Vans' storied legacy in skateboarding. PROPELLER becomes one of the fastest-selling skate films to ever hit iTunes.
In the summer of 2015, Vans releases the Disney and Vans 'Young at Heart' and the Vault by Vans x Takashi Murakami collections. These collaborations become instant fan favorites selling out across the globe.
VANS DEBUTS GEOFF ROWLEY'S FIRST SIGNATURE APPAREL COLLECTION WITH THE LAUNCH OF THE NEW ROWLEY SOLOS IN PRO SKATE.
On March 16, 2016, Vans celebrates 50 years of “Off The Wall” heritage with the launch of The Story of Vans campaign. The historical multi-media campaign breaks records in viewership and is seen around the world in multiple languages. With a nod to the past and eyes on the future, Vans also expands the House of Vans by hosting ten activations around the world to honor the brand’s diverse history, while welcoming newcomers to the, Vans family.
Vans establishes skateboarding’s first ever men’s and women’s Park Terrain World Championship Series, the Vans Park Series. The Vans Park Series seeks to grow participation of skateboarding internationally and inspire the culture and values of skateboarding onto the global stage.
Talented Vans pro skateboarder, Lizzie Armanto turns pro! Lizzie earns the coveted cover of Thrasher Magazine in May 2017. She is the first female to grace the cover of skateboarding’s famed bible in over two decades.
Vans launches the UltraRange, a new perspective in footwear design. Living out of a suitcase on multiple expeditions a year, Vans pro surfer Pat Gudauskas finds endless inspiration traveling around the world in search of the perfect surf. With his collaborative insight, Vans ventured to create a new silhouette that offers maximum versatility across diverse landscapes and lifestyles resulting in the UltraRange. The UltraRange represents Vans’ path toward new innovation, and expands the brand’s vision to create functional, comfort-driven products.
The Vans BMX Pro Cup series debuts in 2017 as the world’s definitive platform for BMX park terrain competition, showcasing the most talented BMX athletes from across the globe. The Vans BMX Pro Cup kicks of its inaugural season in Sydney, Australia closing out with a remarkable finale at the US Open of Surfing in Huntington Beach, Calif. Larry Edgar takes the crown as Vans’ first-ever BMX Pro Cup World Champion.
Vans and Karl Lagerfeld announce the launch of an exclusive Vans x Karl Lagerfeld capsule collection in September. The Parisian-chic collection reinterprets the classic Vans silhouettes through the lens of the iconic fashion hub to deliver an effortlessly cool collaboration between two household names in fashion.
Vans celebrates 25 years of the Half Cab, the world’s most iconic signature skateboarding shoe. Constructed by street skaters in the early ‘90s by cutting the collar off the original Vans “Caballero” pro model, the iconic signature shoe for skateboarding legend Steve Caballero has stood the rest of time as a Vans Pro Skate favorite.