Just last weekend, we came face to face with the sad news that Vans co-founder Paul Van Doren has passed away. From his humble beginnings to the present, the man has been instrumental to the brand.

Rocked by your local punk rockers, Instagram celebrities and influencers down to the most simple human beings like yours truly, Vans has been a brand that has stood the test of time and their shoes say it all.

KCEC9D Andrew W.K. Paul Van Doren and Kevin Lyman at the 2010 Vans Warped Tour Kick-Off party at The Key Club on April 9, 2010 in West Hollywood, California.

To pay tribute to the man and the brand, here are what we believe to be the top 5 most iconic Vans shoes of all time…

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Top 5 Vans Shoes

  • Old Skool
  • Half Cab
  • Sk8 Hi
  • Era
  • Slip-on


The Old Skool 

Cheap, affordable and definitely never goes out of style. Any self-respecting sneakerhead knows the impact of this shoe. It has spanned cultures and brought the Vans franchise to a whole new level. AND it still costs a lot less than your average Jordan.


The Half Cab 

Originally a “Full Cab,” Pro Skater legend Steve Caballero took the liberty of cutting the shoe up for style and function. The result is a mid-cut masterpiece that can withstand the rigors of skateboarding and the daily commute.


The Sk8 Hi 

Formerly dubbed as the “Style 38”, the Sk8-Hi was a silhouette that took skate shoe form and function to a cut of its own. From skateboarding to pop culture to BMX, the Sk8-Hi has stood its waffle soled ground.

The Era

The Vans #95, now known as the Era, is famous for its padded collar and is designed by Tony Alva and Stacy Peralta back in 1977. Known for its low and sleek profile, this is still the shoe of choice for a generation of skateboarders.


The Slip-Ons

The Vans Classic Slip-Ons have gained international notoriety when they were rocked by Sean Penn in the film Fast Times at Ridgemont High. An all-time favorite, this one boasts of practicality as it can be worn at a slide of the foot. Minimalist without lacking appeal, this shoe will remain a waffle-soled masterpiece.

So there you go! There are definitely more Vans silhouettes that are as iconic so please feel free to comment yours! Once again, rest in power to Paul Van Doren, you will be missed.

Speaking of shoes, the New Balance 550 may be right up your alley. 


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