Abbotsford company VSSL has become the first in Canada to collaborate with the iconic Vans shoe brand.
The result is a limited-edition collection that pairs three classic Vans styles with custom VSSL outdoor survival and first aid kits.
The collection “supports a life outdoors, full of adventure and exploration,” according to the Vault by Vans website.
“Together, Vans and VSSL deliver the ultimate package: outdoor gear rooted in function with lofty design principles.”
VSSL (pronounced “vessel”) makes outdoor products that contain critical supplies in the handle of a nearly indestructible flashlight.
The company was a recipient of the 2016 Edison Award, which honours innovative new products, services and business leaders.
They also appeared on the hit CBC TV show Dragons’ Den last year.
VSSL founder Todd Weimer said the collaboration with Vans began when VSSL staff were at a trade show and some Vans representatives began asking questions about their products.
Weimer said he pointed out the the Vans folks that four of the VSSL staff at the booth, including him, were wearing Vans shoes.
A few months later, Weimer received an email from Vans asking too work with VSSL on a collaboration.
“So I picked my jaw up off the floor,” Weimer writes on the VSSL website.
The collaboration resulted in three different styles with matching VSSL kits.
One of the options is the Mountain Series, with Vans that are “designed specifically for the outdoors with warmth retention, moisture-wicking properties and a lug waffle outsole for extra grip on rough terrain.”
The other two choices are part of the Surf and Skate Series.
The collection is slated to be available starting Friday, Nov. 1 at Vault by Vans locations, including the two in Vancouver. A limited number will also be available online at vsslgear.com as a bundle with a VSSL kit.