It’s that time of the year again. When you are finding yourself in one of the larger department stores, with a note in your hand saying you’re number 58, and still you’re happy to wait.
More and more parents fit their children’s shoes themselves and by following some simple steps they will find the perfect fit for their child and can purchase shoes with out waiting for hours.
What to consider when buying new footwear for your child:
Size: Measure the length while your child stands. Add another 10-15 mm to the foot and you’ll have the length of the inner sole of a shoe that fits length vise. There should be about a thumbnail’s length between their toes and the end of the shoe, to allow room for growth and movement. You can also measure your child’s feet by downloading and printing a foot-measuring guide online. But remember that shoe shapes and sizes vary between styles and brands just as they do in clothing. Make sure you always ask for measurements before you buy shoes online. Also several online shops offer a return possibility in case they don’t fit (or you don’t like them after all). Children’s feet grows quickly, in average 15-18 mm per year. So it’s important to measure your child’s feet often and at at least every second month.
Style: Choose shoes with a round tip and low heel and that are made of leather or fabric that breaths. High heels should be avoided because of the pressure they put on growing toes.
Price: Expect to spend £30 to £40 on a well made pair of school shoes. They are an investment for good foot health even if children outgrow them quickly. And buy new shoes as it’s not a good idea to hand shoes down from one child to another as no two pairs of feet are the same.
I have to tell you about my last experience with buying shoes from a specialist shop with the help of a qualified shoe-fitter. He measured my Little Scandinavians feet and then asked us to wait while he got the right size from the storage room. He then came back with size 13 instead of 3. I quickly told him it was the wrong size. No, no he said slightly irritated, “I’ve measured them and this is the right size!” He then tried to squeeze the shoe on my daughters foot and couldn’t really understand why it wouldn’t slip on. He then thought her foot was to wide and told me he would get a wider size out. Again I mentioned that it had been years since she wore size 13 but again with no affect on him as he was already gone. And again we had to stand their watching the specialized shoe-fitter in action. Both my daughter and myself where laughing at this point and eventually he gave up. Then for the third time I told him that the size was wrong. This time he agreed and apologetic said that he had been confused with the 13 and 3, remembering it wrong when getting the size.
Anyway, this experience made me miss the old lady, in the independent shoe shop Agnar Hagen in Oslo, that could look at your child’s feet and know the size, and what brands she would recommend. And with her hands she would feel if one size up or down would be better. That’s a shoe specialist to me.
And when it comes to school shoes for the two little Scandinavians, it’s already purchased in a small independent shop in Estepona. They are made of soft Spanish leather and fitted by the the specialized shoe-fitter; the Scandinavian Mum! 😉