In 1966 the Van Doren Rubber Co. was founded by Paul Van Doren. The early design for the sole, which featured a diamond pattern, which sparked complaints from customers as it cracked too easily on the ball area of the sole. This triggered the addition of vertical lines inside the diamonds in the ball area of the sole, a design that was patented as the ‘Vans Waffle Sole’. During the 1970s many more colours and styles of shoe were introduced, and thirteen years after the company was first established, the Vans slip on shoe was introduced in 1979. Since the 1970s, Vans has been one of the choice brands for skate boarding enthusiasts.
Many bands, such as Kiss, Iron Maiden, Slayer, Slipknot and Rise Against, have had shoes made with Vans. Most of which feature band artwork and logos. There has also been a range of shoes designed in celebration of The Simpsons Movie which feature artwork of various characters such as Homer, Bart and Krusty the Clown. Street artist, Dave the Chimp has also collaborated with Vans on a range of shoes; these designs incorporate bright neon colours, cartoon-style eyes, and even a toe design on the base of the shoe, clearly visible through the clear sole.