Bearded & Tschorn: Counter-culture collaboration by Vans and R. Crumb


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When I mentioned to my editor that one of the most prestigious of the 18 judged categories of facial hair at the upcoming WBMC is referred to as ‘full beard natural,’ she sent me a link to the Wikipedia entry for underground comix pioneer Robert Crumb‘s long-bearded Mr. Natural character. That, in turn, reminded me of a cool collaboration I’ve been meaning to mention for a few days now -- the Vans brand has partnered with Crumb to put some of the counter-culture cartoonist’s artwork on footwear.

Four different R. Crumb shoes are due to hit store shelves on Oct. 1; two in the Vans Classics collections -- including the Mr. Natural deconstructed SK8-Hi pictured above ($60) and a classic slip-on featuring Fritz the Cat ($52) -- will be available through regular Vans vendors.


Two additional higher-end styles (using suede and leather) will be sold through Vans Vault accounts; a ‘Modern America’ Chukka boot ($95) and a ‘Keep on Truckin’ ’ Authentic ($90).

The collaboration is great for fans of the artist and the skate shoe brand, but unfortunately a good five months too late for me to sport some whisker-themed kicks to the biennial battle of the beards (and mustaches) that takes place in Anchorage, Alaska, later this month.

-- Adam Tschorn

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Read more Bearded & Tschorn: the Road to the World Beard and Moustache Championships