Mega brands collaborating with nostalgic cartoons is nothing new. (Please see Moschino for reference.) And as someone who still watches animated shows on the daily, I’m all about it. But the newest collaboration is a step above the rest, and I've got all the information on where to buy the Vans x SpongeBob collection below. Because what’s better than getting the chance to literally walk around in Bikini Bottom?! Nothing.
While I was pretty stoked about the Hello Kitty x Puma collaboration that just came out last week (Hello Kitty and SpongeBob are on the same level of amazingness for me), Vans will always be my sneaker brand of choice. I have worn my Old Skool sneakers every single day for the past 54 days straight, no lie, and have developed a loving allegiance to their maker. I dig their fit, their feel, the brand’s history, and the fact that Vans helps to champion emerging musical artists. I’m not a skater (dreams) but the Vans culture makes me wish I was.
ANYWAYS. The other main draw of this collab is, of course, SpongeBob, the yellow rectangle of a guy whom I obsessively watched for years in the mid-to late-aughts. I can’t tell you how many times my best friend and I took turns belting out the roles of the theme song:
“Are you ready kids?
I can't hear you...
Ohhhhhh! Who lives in a pineapple under the sea?
And so on. Yes, I was in high school then, but the greatest thing about SpongeBob is that no matter what age you are, you’ll find it hilarious. Yes, it’s meant for kids, but the ways in which it seamlessly weaves in adult humour is wildly clever. Have you ever heard of another children’s show making a panty raid joke?
Or one that references a 1922 German Expressionist horror film for a punchline?
If you have a cold, dead heart and didn’t think it was funny, then I hope you’re at least with me when I say the characters themselves and the setting of Bikini Bottom were excellently crafted. Colorful, silly, and cute, everything included on the show was clearly well thought-out. Which is why I am so stoked that I can now look at my favorite characters on the daily while they ride around on my feet.
The Vans x SpongeBob collection features six pairs of sneakers, from high tops to low tops to slip-ons, alike. Skateboarding accessories and apparel is also included but let’s be real; sneakers are where it’s at.
Each sneaker features a different print — in one, SpongeBob’s head is disintegrating into small blocks; in another, Patrick Star is pictured skateboarding — but the best detail of all is the most secretive one.
One the bottom of each shoe is a squished Plankton, which serves him right for trying to steal the recipe for the Krabby Patty! Sadly, Sandy Cheeks, who was my favorite character, doesn’t appear in any of the prints, but she’s there in spirit.
The collection officially launches on Feb. 24 at selected retailers around the US (check here to find the store nearest to you), but we’re hoping it’ll become available online shortly after. Seeing as SpongeBob was, and still is, one of the most-loved cartoons of all time, everyone deserves some of him in their life.
With a color palette made for spring dressing and a playfulness perfect for music festivals, this collection is releasing at the perfect time. So if nautical nonsense be something you wish, then drop a few bucks on kicks featuring fish.
That sucked, but you try and do better.