INTO: A Camper Himalayan Shoe Reimagined for an Off-Duty Dalai Lama

Published November 1, 2019

Picture this: It’s a cold Saturday morning, the after-rain chill still lingering in the air, winter hasn’t fully hit—yet, but baby, it’s cold outside. It’s one of those days spent watching Blue Jasmine and the same episode of Schitt’s Creek over and over. It’s one of those mornings spent switching between one’s bed and the couch. I always wished I had the perfect shoe for those days, a sock-sneaker hybrid that can easily go from couch-to-bed-to-bodega-to-coffee shop. It’s a hard shoe to find, I know I’ve tried. But now, my prayers have been answered via Camper‘s latest collaboration with the always-funky German designer Bernhard Willhelm in honor of the 10th anniversary of the brand’s iconique and ever-classic Himalayan shoe. “I wanted a furry ‘goat sock’—something the Dalai Lama would wear for a good time,” Willhelm told Interview. “Imagine a post-modern dude in this ‘classic’ that we have created.” I’m not entirely informed as to what the Dalai Lama gets down to these days, but I do know that these reimagined Himalayan’s are comfy, cozy, and totally weird. 

It’s not beyond me to acknowledge, as I write these words, that sock-like shoes have a rather damming reputation thanks to those other shoes that look like socks, but like I always say: forgive and forget—emphasis on the forget. I, myself, have been weary of these creatures but as I experienced this shoe for “spiritual whores,” as Willhelm put it, my perception of sock shoes might have been swayed, especially since the Camper’s latest iteration of the Himalayan comes exclusively in black and white color combinations, which was an anti-reaction from the German designer on “too much input,” plus he wanted the shoe to maintain it’s versatility. “I like the idea of playing basketball in them. It’s a streamlined look.” For some, mainly me, this version of Camper’s Himalayan shoe is the perfect accessory to my leisure activities disguised as self-care, for others it’s the perfect way to bring new life into a staple or as Willhelm put it—before taking off to a castle in Spain where he’ll be waking up to a 5 a.m. cock call while he works on the next Camper capsule—the evolution of a wanted and desired classic that’s fashion forward and funky—whether you’re watching a ball or playing ball.