polo outlet in maryland Vans unveils new UltraRange collection
July 7 8; Hasting SkateparkSince its beginning in 1966, the company (then called The Van Doren Rubber Company) has taken Southern California surf and skate culture and made it a multi billion dollar business, boasting wares worn worldwide from small town teenagers to A list celebrities, and virtually everyone in between.
think it the identity, Tanner Gudauskas says of the brand overall appeal. not about who it on or what happening (with trends), Vans is almost a counter culture in itself. Even now, as it seems like it a bigger brand, Vans is able to keep their roots.
Gudauskas, a professional surfer and Vans global athlete, admits he spotted the brand products in some pretty surprising places during his roughly six to 10 months per year on the road, too.
brothers and I got to do a show called Down Days and we were basically given the green light to check out surf culture in different parts of the world. We went to Palestine, to Germany, Morocco and Iceland, he says. everywhere we would go, there were people wearing Vans. Even in remote places. And it wasn even just a Vans shoe.
was like, wow, gnarly.
Tanner Gudauskas, professional surfer and Vans global athlete.
So, how has a once small California company that made its shoes on site at its Anaheim facility morphed into a global phenomenon? By sticking close to its surf skate roots.
you part of a culture and you rooted in things and you have that lens, you have a unique communication and insight with consumers so instead of just building products that you think they like or you think is on trend, you building things that work toward what they want to do for their lifestyle, Scott Sisamis, senior marketing manager for Vans Surf, says. think there a separation, that lifestyle is people at the mall. And, sure lifestyle is (those) people, but there still has to be a ring of authenticity that goes all the way out, no matter how core this person is to the actual activity, per se.
open to everyone.
similar to Vans in a lot of ways in that the 501 is a billion dollarbusiness on its own, he says of the iconic denim line. have all these new things they always doing, but they have something they rooted in something they known for and then they have all these other things you have to try.
think Vans had an era, in the late and early 2000s, where we really started to have a point of view, Sisamis, who has been with the company for more than 20 years, says. kind of got their footing and the communication started getting clear. And it resonated.
The rise in popularity in the late and early aughts of skateboarding didn hurt either, as the company, which was ultimately acquired by VF in 2004,
regained its of view.
had help from the larger pop culture, where the sleeker look and vulcanized footwear in general got popular, he explains. us, there was kind of a happy accident, because we were just finding our footing and this happened. There was also a wave of surfing and skating in cinema, and pop culture from a music standpoint, as well.
It was somewhere during that time, as the Vans team explored the creative boundaries of its ingrained culture, they realized that a shoe had to be more than just, well, a shoe.
was a huge underlying thought, Sisamis explains. needs to be something that is really comfortable, that going to work in a lot of environments. the following years, Vans introduced several new products including the ISO, a more streamlined sneaker that fit into the growing street style sneaker (or athleisure) trend that aimed to marry fashion and function in a Vans sort of way.
we launched the ISOs and we launched that capsule, we tried to build something to go straight to a mall consumer, Sisamis says. think we tried to skip a couple steps, but, there were take aways from it that were super useful. the Vans team turned to a few of the athletes on their teams in order to collect their feedback on the latest designs, a critical step in the Vans creation process that dates back to the creation of the fan favourite Era shoe by skateboarding legends Tony Alva and Stacy Peralta in 1976.
the surfers, the one thing that really different for them from the average person is they travelling with 10 times as much luggage, Sisamis explains of the need for a versatile shoe. as you get seasoned in travelling, you start to think, OK, what can I minimize? What clothes are really easy to wash. If I could have one pair of shoes as opposed to taking a pair of shoes for formal events, a pair of shoes for trucking on the beach and a pair for hiking up this hill.
where the versatility is really the idea behind all of this. main feedback on the shoes came from Gudauskas brother, fellow professional surfer, Pat Gudauskas.
came to the Vans team and said, hey, this is what I want to wear, but I want to wear it in a Vans way. I would feel kind of goofy wearing a running shoe, Gudauskas explains of his brother interest in wearing more supportive shoes given the hectic travel and on your feet lifestyle of their chosen career.
Taking the pro surfer feedback, the Vans design team decided to create a shoe that would have the performance appeal of athletic sneakers but with the iconic style of the Southern California brand.
And the UltraRange was the result.
The UltraRange Rapidweld from Vans, $80. have a really unusual schedule, but still, everything they do applies to everybody. But on a much more aspirational level.
this shoe, we kind of at that crossroads again, because we have (the classics) but we need to expand and have new technology that still carries that Vans DNA and aesthetic and some of the traits that you known for, Sisamis says.