Model: Classic Slip-On LX "Caution," "Bonfire," and "Grass"
Release Date: July 29
Buy: Online at One Block Down
Editor's Notes: If we're talking skate shoes; iconic ones synonymous with its culture throughout its golden era pre-Millennium, there's no chance we'd get away with not mentioning Vans; specifically, the Classic Slip-On.
Since its late 70s debut, the silhouette has remained a staple of skate culture and retained its positioning as a flagship style of Vans' arsenal. Rightly so, the Slip-On oozes the Californian cool for which the brand is so internationally adored.
For its latest collaborative project, following furniture with Cassina for Milan Design Week and a selection of bags with PORTER, One Block Down sets sight of Vans for a celebration of these cultural roots, examining the role that Southern Californian surf boarders played in catapulting skateboarding to popularity.
During this period of the late 70s, when waves were low, these surfers would head on land and switch boards, taking Vans' Classic Slip-On as their inland uniform. At this time, it was the iconic Checkerboard pattern that dressed the shoe's uppers; and, to this day, lives on as its most recognizable finish.
This lover of Checkerboard Slip-Ons is the foundation of the pair's new collaborative effort, seeing One Block Down remix the original pattern with a meticulous attention to detail that elevates the silhouette to the status of wearable art.
Rendered in three colorways – "Caution," "Grass," and "Bonfire" – the Checkerboard pattern has been remixed using hand-placed beads. Across each pair, every bead has been carefully applied to faultless follow the lines of the original pattern. Completing a pair takes 20 hours and is carried out by hand in Italy.
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