Rapper Allan Kingdom is standing outside the Grammy Awards for his first major red carpet appearance. It’s February 16, 2016, and he’s been nominated for two awards for his collaboration with Kanye West, “All Day.” Publicists and members of the press are milling around nearby, while paparazzi, cameras flashing, call out the names of other nominees and presenters, many of whom are angling for a spot on a best dressed list or a shared photo on Instagram. Pharrell is wearing a Chanel jacket; A$AP Rocky is in head-to-toe Gucci. Kingdom isn’t as flashy as those two, but is leaving a mark in his own way; the 21-year-old rapper is dressed in a light brown suit from Joseph Abboud with a Avion Clothiers white button down shirt underneath. And on his feet are something a little more casual: A pair of all-white Vans Sk8-Hi sneakers.

“I didn’t want to wear dress shoes to the Grammys,” he says today. “I wanted to wear sneakers, something chill that described my personality.”

Allan, who grew up in Minnesota, didn’t skate growing up, and he doesn’t now. But, like so many other well-dressed guys, he still wears Vans. He remembers first hearing The Pack’s 2009 song “Vans” in junior high and buying a pair of colored checkerboard Sk8-His. “All my friends started wearing them,” he says. “It was cool.” Now, he always has a pair in his closet. “I just feel like there’s so many purposes to it. You could stunt. You could look like you don’t care. I think it’s become more than a skate shoe.”

Vans, which celebrates its 50th anniversary today, has been dubbed the world’s number one skateboard shoe. But it isn’t just a skate shoe for skaters anymore.