You Need To See These Delightfully Impractical Vans

We've been seeing a lot of our favorite sneakers take on completely different forms. Solid-gold Air Jordans! A new Chuck Taylor! Gold-stitched Superstars! Now Vans is the latest of our go-to shoe names to give some of its signature kicks a brand-new look — one that's wonderfully impractical and unexpectedly cute.

These special-edition, candy-colored, soft-to-the-touch kicks launched today. It's the latest installment of Pop-In@Nordstrom, the retailer's ongoing series of shops-within-shops. Olivia Kim, Nordstrom's vice president of creative partnerships, dreamed up her own version of Vans' classic silhouettes with a simple M.O.: "I wanted the shoes to be as hairy as possible," she tells Refinery29.

Kim likens the collab's origins to dating: "We were both on each other’s radars, but sometimes it takes the colliding of planets to make things happen," she told us. "You have a crush on someone, they have a crush on you, you both know you are crushing on each other, but someone needs to have a party to bring you together so you can actually dance, share a soda, and maybe even sneak a smooch."

The resulting kicks include fuzzy, sugary pastel Old Skools, Velcro-closure sneakers fashioned out of emerald velvet, and shearling-all-over chukka boots. The capsule also includes apparel and accessories, which, compared to the shoes, are more subdued: black and burgundy sweats and T-shirts (with plenty of Vans' signature checkerboard). The vibe of the clothing is closer to the skater-kid aesthetic the brand is best known for. The shoes start at $39.95 for toddler sizes and $64.95 for adults; the collection caps out at $350 for leather backpacks.

Kim acknowledges that furry shoes aren't the most sensible. "If they get wet or muddy, they'll look like a dog that was caught in the rain, so you'll want to be careful about puddles," Kim said. Duly noted.

Click ahead to see the some of our favorites from the collection.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
Here's Kim at work. "We have been wanting to work with Vans for a while now, but the timing has always been tricky, until now," she said of the pair-up.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
Now, a peep at the toe... While the collection features Old Skools and chukkas, Kim grew up as a faithful Era-wearer. "I'd wear them until they were trashed and my big toe popped out," she recalls. "This was back when everyone was writing on them, and you'd write the name of your crush on the sole. Then cross it off and write another one."
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
Is it still too warm out to velvet-ify our wardrobes? The texture seems totally unprecedented for Vans — but, as it turns out, Kim and her team drew from sneaker DIY's they saw online. "We had an inspiration photo that we found on the internet: Someone had custom-cut individual pieces of fur and literally safety-pinned them onto the shoe," she explains. "I'm always looking for pictures, storing them and bringing them up when I need to."
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
"I think our shoes are really different for [Vans]," Kim speculates. "I don't know that they had ever done a shearling shoe before."
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
Phones out: These kicks make for great #shoefies.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
The fuzzy pink-and-blue Vans are Kim's personal favorites from the capsule.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Old Skool' Sneaker, $64.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
All sneakers in the Vans x Pop-in@Nordstrom collection are unisex. "Some I thought would resonate more with one or the other, but I didn’t want to be gender-specific about them," Kim said.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans'Old Skool' Velvet Sneaker, $64.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
The pastel textures reminded Kim of "’90s candy ravers."

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Old Skool' Sneaker, $64.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
...Plus, what's more '90s than Velcro sneakers? (Hey, you need some element of practicality if you're going to wear velvet shoes.)

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Old Skool' Sneaker (Toddler, Little Kid & Big Kid), $44.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
While none of the styles is designated specifically for men or women, Kim thought the jewel tones would resonate more with a male customer — "something that felt regal and royal, or reminded you of back to school, whether you're in school or not," she notes.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans Velvet Chukka Sneaker, $64.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
"I think velvet for guys is kind of outrageous and impractical as well, but there's something chic about it," Kim says.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans Velvet Chukka Sneaker, $64.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
A little springtime coloring on a classic fall shoe.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans Chukka Sneaker, $64.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
These are the perfect lace-ups to wear before any snow hits the ground.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans Chukka Sneaker, $64.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
Everything is much cuter when it's toddler-sized!

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Old Skool' Sneaker (Baby, Walker & Toddler), $39.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
If only they made these in adult sizes...

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Old Skool V' Genuine Shearling & Canvas Sneaker (Baby, Toddler & Walker), $39.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
These just made it to the top of every baby-shower wish list, ever.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Old Skool V' Faux Shearling Sneaker (Baby, Walker & Toddler), $39.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
When back-to-school shopping gets all grown up.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Calico Plus' Leather Backpack, $250, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
Vans is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year — yet we're the ones getting all the new gear.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Checker' Leather Backpack, $350, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
You carried your Vans checkerboard backpack everywhere back in the day. This is the adult version.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Checker' Leather Backpack, $350, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
Come for the shoes, stay for the streetwear-inspired apparel.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans Floral Print Crewneck Raglan Sweatshirt, $54.50, available at Nordstrom; 'Blackheart' Cuffed Stretch Chinos, $49.50, available at Nordstrom; 'Your Fav' Hat, $26, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
As nostalgia's hold on fashion deepens, we move from the '90s into the early aughts — with logo tees at the forefront.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Awesome' Flannel Shirt, $59.50, available at Nordstrom; 'Ringer Plus' Crewneck Tee, $24.50, available at Nordstrom; 'Blackheart' Cuffed Stretch Chinos, $49.50, available at Nordstrom; 'Sk8-Hi Reissue' Sneaker, $64.95, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
Coordinated, but not matchy-matchy.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans Ringer Plus' Crewneck Tee, $24.50, available at Nordstrom; 'Blackheart' Cuffed Stretch Chinos, $49.50, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
How to subtly pair up your outfit with your accessories without losing your cool.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Checker' Short Sleeve Shirtdress, $64.50, available at Nordstrom; 'Calico Plus' Leather Backpack, $250, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
Checkmate.

Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans 'Checker' Raglan Tee, $34.50, available at Nordstrom.
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Photo: Courtesy of Vans.
In case you want to do the "full look," let this model be your muse.


Pop-In@Nordstrom x Vans Checker Crewneck Sweatshirt, $54.50, available at Nordstrom; 'Blackheart' Cuffed Stretch Chinos, $49.50, available at Nordstrom; Velvet Chukka Sneaker, $64.95, available at Nordstrom.
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