This story was originally published on February 7, 2020.
Downtown-cool designer Sandy Liang has announced a new collaboration with Vans, and we can’t wait to get our hands on it. Debuting February 21, Liang has applied her signature flair — mixing prints, colors, and materials — to Vans’ iconic and youthful sneakers, plus covetable clothing and accessories. The designer, who is known for taking inspiration from her hometown of Bayside, Queens, as well as her grandmother and childhood hand-me-downs, represents a magnetism and playfulness — one that Vans embodies.
“To see my ideas come to life on such an iconic collection of footwear and apparel is a dream come true,” said Sandy Liang in a press release. “This collection embodies the playful dreaminess of the nineties, as well as the grittiness of downtown New York City.”
Materials are a major focus of the collaboration. For example, snow-leopard fur covers the Vans Platform Slip-On while a pair of pink, velour Old Skool sneakers are decorated with metal jewelry for a feminine look with an edge (the hue was inspired by the designer’s couch from her studio on the Lower East Side). Butterflies adorn another silhouette along with white-lock stitching and custom Sandy Liang laces. A Sport sneaker is updated with canvas leopard uppers on one side and traditional tartan plaid on the other side, along with the classic Vans checkerboard print on the heel tab and custom laces.
There are nine pieces of apparel and accessories in the collection, which all draw on ‘90s trends. Marbled color-ways, snakeskin print, butterfly motifs, and bejeweled piercing details are applied to silhouettes like an oversized hoodie, a thick cotton t-shirt, and bike shorts. There’s also a tank, plush pants, and a cropped hoodie merging comfort with track-suit aesthetics. A throwback polo shirt, a jumpsuit decorated with rivets around the collar, a gas-station style shirt with polka dots, and matching bucket hat are all must-have items that are sure to sell out fast. There’s even a fanny pack with metal chain and hardware, a crossbody bag with faux shearling, and a pair of Sandy Liang branded socks.
The collection perfectly encapsulates Liang’s design approach while still incorporating Vans’ classic vibe — it’s dainty yet edgy with some sport, and of course, just the right amount of nostalgia thrown in. If you’ve been wanting to buy a piece from Liang’s line, now’s the time to grab something: The limited-edition collection is at a more accessible price point than her typical pieces.