The Van Doren Rubber Company makes the best and first skateboard shoes since 1966. The shoes became very popular since the kids from the legendary Zephyr surf crew, later skate crew, showed up on a skateboard competition in the ’70’s with the Vans Authentic shoes, blue Levi’s Jeans and blue crew shirts. Still a classic outfit!

In 1975, the Vans “#95”, known today as the “Era”, was designed by Tony Alva and Stacy Peralta (both memebers of the Zephyr crew). With a padded collar and different color combinations, the Era became the shoe of choice for a generation of skateboarders due to the non-slip bottom being more conducive for a better grip. In my younger days I worn the Vans Era shoes always when I was on the streets with my skateboard. And still for the summer I am wearing the Era’s. Below some nice worn-out examples of this classic timeless design.

Early Vans patent drawing;

Vintage Vans shoes boxes;

Written by Wouter Munnichs
I'm the founder of Long John. Next to running this daily magazine, I'm working as a freelance denim specialist for the industry. Titled as 'Denim Influencer 2020' by Rivet 50. Celebrated my 10th anniversary with Long John in 2021.