We first saw this Vans “Off The Wall” ad at their showroom sometime in early 2007. My first thought was, “what is that hi-top in the middle there?”.
It looked like a cross between the Sk8 Hi and the Nike Blazer, but wasn’t currently in the catalog. It did exist in a modified form as the Alva in the skate line, but this particular style: Midschool ’77, wasn’t being produced. I called the powers that be at Vans and asked if we could re-issue that model as a Classic Kicks collab.
The idea of bringing a sneaker back from the dead was very appealing and the whole “Off The Wall” collection just screamed Vans California heritage to me. Vans flew me out to Cali and we began the process. In the meeting, we agreed to re-introduce the model in two colors: red and blue. Since most Vans sneakers are on the same waffle sole, it makes it easier to bring a sneaker back, since no new molds are needed for the last. While we were in this meeting, we decided to step it up and also release four colors of the Era from the same line. Six sneakers total in this collaboration. Pretty ambitious, but I knew these would be a success.
Fast forward to summer 2008. We first dropped the four Era’s and then the Midschool’s a month later. These sneakers sold out instantly at Classic Kicks and we also dropped a few pairs in Patta and Colette. The set also made it into the All Gone book from 2008 with a great review.
We have a mini-collection of Vans ads from 1977 after the break. Check them out.