Just when I thought my favorite sneaker label couldn't get any better they went ahead and collaborated with one of the buzziest young design talents that London's got to offer on a line of seriously cool shoes. The Vans x Ashley Williams collection is equal parts cheeky and wearable and if you like infusing your look with any essence of edginess then you'll want to shop it ASAP. Seriously, this partnership is a total dream, and seeing as Williams' pieces are typically not on the affordable spectrum of things, it's a chance to own some high fashion goodness for less.
Since launching her brand in 2013, Williams has made a name for herself as a true design vanguard within the global fashion landscape. Her designs are always covetable, often a little punky, and have earned fans with the likes of Kim Kardashian West, Georgia May Jagger, Paris Hilton, Justine Skye, and more. The bold aesthetic of Williams' creations (think punchy prints, graphic crewnecks, strong silhouettes, and slightly gothic influences) melds perfectly with the Vans vibe, making her an ideal collaborator for the brand, who tapped her to reimagine four of their classic footwear styles. As described in a press release, "Inspired by living and breathing skate culture in her youth, Williams seamlessly merges her inherent sense of style with an 'Off The Wall' attitude."
The first classic style to get the Williams touch is Vans' first skate model, the Era. The toe and heel panels feature a custom black and white jug print, which contrasts beautifully with the black and pink zebra print that covers the rest of the shoe. The sidewalls feature a custom "Vans" and "Ashley" checkerboard printed tape while cherry red laces finished off the style with a bright pop of a contrasting hue. The sneakers totally remind me of a pair of hot pink and black Vans I owned in middle school when jelly bracelets and care bare shoe laces were all the rage, just with a decidedly more elevated and stylized feel. These are punky shoes for grown-ups.
Next up is the Authentic, which is arguably the most tame shoe of the bunch. Featuring a solid black canvas upper with exposed white stitching, it looks like Vans' classic take on the style at first glance. But when you look more closely, silver piercings on the toe and heel of the shoe as well as printed laces set it apart from the original version.
If you've been digging the animal print trend that swept the fashion industry as of late, the Style 29 offering might be your favorite of the four. Featuring an orange and black tiger printed canvas upper, black rubber toe caps, black chunky treads, and a silver buckle closure, it's kind of like the collaboration's quirky take on the normcore trend. Into it.
Because buckles and laces can be annoying AF, the collection also offers the Slip-On, but covered in a custom graphic black and white newspaper print. They'll go with anything and can be pulled on and off with ease. Effortless style? That's cool.
All four styles can be bought at vans.com for $65.