A Day At The New Vans Corporate Headquarters (8.30.17)


I know it’s been a few weeks since we were invited to tour the Vans Corporate Headquarters, but life has really been in the way and I haven’t been able to really sit down and write.  I mainly wanted to share with you, some random photos that I was able to take while touring this amazing new facility.  Situated right off the 405 freeway in Costa Mesa, just West of Harbor Blvd., perfectly visible from the freeway, stands this gigantic checkerboard wrapped building, with an even more giant Vans logo on each side of the building.  It’s even more magnificent from the inside courtyard, where you’ve all seen that big red staircase that connects all 3 floors together.


I started out my day meeting up with the Strictly Waffles fam Eddie and Joey in the parking lot.  We arrived inside to all of our Vans PR friends, and a few familiar faces I’ve met at past events.  We were provided with some breakfast items and Stumptown Coffee which is the coffee of choice throughout the main cafe, and the coffee kitchens situated on each floor.  I was all about that nitro cold brew that was on tap, served up by their very own barista Brandon.  This was too awesome.


The day of course started with a nice introduction from Steve Van Doren, and his sister Cheryl, talking about what was important when asking employees about what they wanted the new building to have, as well as making sure it was a place that made you love being at work.  There are private think spaces throughout the entire building, an outdoor courtyard complete with a bell that can be rung and heard throughout the entire place, when you make a significant achievement, and there’s even a game room loaded with air hockey, foosball, and shuffleboards to blow off a little steam on.  Vans memorabilia is on display almost everywhere you look.  Band collab shoes, custom Fender guitars, and even the Vans Born Free 9 motorcycle that was built by Thompson Cycles. Read More

Vans, the Icon of Creative Expression, Highlights the Diverse Meaning of “Off The Wall”

Words via Vans:

“Vans, the original action sports and one of the largest youth culture brands in the world, today announced the release of its global campaign, This Is Off The Wall.  Following up on Vans’ 50th anniversary series, which welcomed newcomers to the brand’s rich heritage and thanked decades of loyalists, the 2017 campaign focuses on creative expression, the core of Vans’ “Off The Wall” culture.

To demonstrate the breadth of activities and pursuits that define “Off The Wall,” Vans has developed a digital campaign utilizing a range of film techniques, from slow motion to time-lapse, focusing on the creative endeavors in action sports, art, music and street culture that Vans champions. Vans showcases the essence of “Off The Wall” through a diverse set of ambassadors within a hero montage and a series of shorter spots.

“The meaning of ‘Off The Wall’ is the very ethos of Vans, the very identity of our brand – its everything we stand for,” said Doug Palladini, Vans Global Brand President. “We’re pleased to tell this inspiring and sincere, five-decade-long story through our family of ambassadors who have been brought together by their diverse passions for creativity.”

This Is Off The Wall taps into Vans professional athletes, artists, musicians and style purveyors who have long and personal histories with the brand. Their stories are each unique and told through a variety of tones, but ultimately shine a light on the passions that Vans has always supported. The visual nature and emotions that are evoked in each story are easily translatable around the world, showing that creative exprAession is inclusive and without borders. 

 Fara Howard, Vans’ VP of Global Marketing, shares, “It’s hard to assign one definition to ‘Off The Wall’, so we wanted to deliver a campaign that truly shows how our mantra takes shape through various forms of creativity. Whether that’s through music, surfing, skateboarding or customizing a pair of shoes, all the stories told will communicate the distinct way in which Vans looks at the world.”

“Off The Wall” was a term coined when skateboarders in the mid ‘70s were landing new tricks in empty pools by literally skating off the wall. At that time, skateboarders were outcasts of society who expressed themselves through the style of their sport. These individuals were not only the pioneers of skateboarding, but also lived and breathed creativity through art, music, fashion and local culture. For more than 50 years, “Off The Wall” has been synonymous with that original spirit of rebellion and creative expression. 

Visit www.vans.com/#offthewall to watch the This Is Off The Wall series and visit www.houseofvans.com to see how “Off The Wall” will come to life throughout the year.

Hypebeast Interview: Christian Hosoi Reflects On Being A Part of the Vans Legacy


Hypebeast recently sat down with one of our favorite skate legends, Christian Hosoi, to reflect on his professional skateboarding career, and more specifically his role with Vans.  He’s one of the most recognizable skateboarders of all time, and it’s no surprise Vans approached him a long time ago, along with many other greats, to go out and represent the brand and be the cultural icon that he undoubtedly is.  This interview is great, and full of small stories that you’ll enjoy if you’re a fan of skateboarding history, culture, or just a fan of him.  Check it out over on Hypebeast!

Pete Williams: Ranks His Top 10 Sk8-Hi’s of All Time @petewilliams @highsnobiety


Managing Editor over at Highsnobiety, Pete Williams is a well known sneaker enthusiast who wrote up a nice article sharing his affinity for the Sk8-Hi, and wanted to share with us his top 10 Sk8-Hi’s of all time.  His list is not far from what mine would look like, and I love that all of his photos are of his own shoes, all worn in, and not cleaned up for their photo shoot!  When you get a chance, head on over to Highsnobiety and check out his article and all of the awesome photos.

info via Highsnobiety

How Vans tapped Southern California skate culture and became a billion-dollar shoe brand (LA Times Article)

Here’s another article about Vans and their 50th Anniversary, this time from the Los Angeles Times.  Check it out and read it from another interviewer’s perspective.

Article by Adam Tschorn of the LA Times

Happy 50th, Vans: How the iconic shoe brand born in Anaheim has kept on surviving (OC Register Article)

Steve Van Doren, himself

As we come up on Vans’ 50th Anniversary this Wednesday, Vans has been featured in a few articles around town, and Orange County’s own OC Register sat down with our friends over at Vans, to discuss the past, present, and future, and were also kind enough to get Laylan Connelly, the one who wrote the article, to reach out to me for our perspective on the brand, and how people like us represent Vans in the current sneaker collecting community.  We had a nice phone conversation, and I’m sure I rambled on a little too much, as I normally do, but it was just nice to see that she even included my part, lol!  Anyways, read the great article over on the OC Register.

Everybody’s favorite vintage Vans fanatic, @pillowheat

info via Laylan at the OC Register

Us vs. The Supreme Bots!


This morning’s Supreme Vans launch was fun, huh?  In a matter of seconds, a full size run of shoes in every color turned into SOLD OUT.  The bots were alive and working, that’s for sure.  Some were lucky, and others weren’t.  We can wax nostalgia about how things used to be with Supreme Vans, but is this going to be the new norm?  Buying some 3rd party app in order to have a better chance at purchasing something for retail?  I would assume that this would be an easy thing to curtail, by perhaps some sort of captcha or human verification at final checkout, but perhaps it’s this hype and sense of limited availability that keeps people buying it up.  The real question is how long can they keep us on the hook, before we give up and let go of the bait?!

Hypebeast Interview With Jon & Vinny, and Vans VP Doug Palladini About Kitchen Vans


Hypebeast sat down with Jon Shook, Vinny Dotolo, and Vans VP Doug Palladini to talk about their recent Vans collaboration, a collection of reimagined Vans silhouettes fit for the modern eatery.  They discuss the inspiration for each colorway, the work ethic of those working in the kitchen, and there’s also mention of these shoes coming soon, so check out the article HERE.

Speedway Mag: Rian Pozzebon talks Ten Years of Vans Syndicate (Interview by @Farran_Golding)


As we reluctantly see the Vans Syndicate line come to an end, a few people have been sharing their own perspectives of the brand, and it’s nice to see this kind of attention being shed on the one sub-brand at Vans that was sort of the catalyst for the Vans collecting community.  We didn’t even know it yet, but we were bridging the fashion forward Vans Vault consumer, with the sneakerhead collector lining up at their local skate shops in the early morning for some coveted re-sellable release.  Over the years, as the Swoosh started to toy around with their consumers, Vans Syndicate offered up a nice alternative, and dollars started to migrate towards the “S”.  Our Vans community was growing leaps and bounds, and was starting to get some recognition.  Vans is solidified in the sneaker collecting community, and dare I say it all started with Vans Syndicate.

With that being said, Farran Golding, of Sidewalk Mag, Welcome Leeds, The Green Zine, and Speedway Mag, had a chance to catch up with Syndicate’s footwear design manager Rian Pozzebon, and ask him a few questions about the almighty “S”, like how it was created, who was integral in it’s early years, their purpose, the shoe Rian currently wears, and even an ever so slight hint at what the future holds for Vans Syndicate, or whatever it evolves into.  Head on over to Speedway Mag to read the article, and follow Farran here on Instagram and Twitter.


The One Out of Step – A Farewell Salute to Vans Syndicate by The Hundreds’ Maarten Warning (@warheadnl)


I just stumbled across this article this morning, and I must say, I had no idea there were others out there who knew as much info as my fellow Under The Palms / Strictly Vans homies, about Vans Syndicate.  I really thought we had found them all, and had hazed them into our fraternity.  I’m talking about some detailed shit, like back-story type shit.  Stuff you only hear about from original Vans Syndicate dealers, reps, and employees, as well from just personal experience early on before the Vans hype started to grow into what it is today.  Founder of Noise Magazine, Lacebag, and now an author for The Hundreds, Amsterdam-native Maarten Warning, has created the best tribute to Vans Syndicate that I’ve read so far.  Now that I think of it, it makes complete sense, as there is a pretty big “S” following in The Netherlands!  Shout out to Erwin!  Anyways, Maarten’s article goes in depth about the start of Vans Syndicate, the early collaborations, and even put together an awesome, and nearly similar to what I’d have chosen list of his 10 favorite Syndicate releases.  Please take the time out to read his article over at The Hundreds, and follow him @warheadnl on Instagram and Twitter.