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How bad are supermarket & similar shoes for young DC

(32 Posts)
Murtette Sat 06-Oct-12 22:44:33

DD is 3. Until now, she's worn "proper" (i.e. Clarks or Startrite) shoes or sandals 90% of the time when she has shoes on. She currently has a pair of T bar Startrite leather shoes which are fine but I'm thinking that a pair of trainers would be useful for when she's running around and that some boots would be nice for the winter. Do I have to fork out £££ for them on a proper brand or can I just pick some up in the supermarket? They are some gorgeous brown leather boots in Sainburys which seem a bargain but I don't want to ruin her feet forever for the sake or cuteness. I know a lot of people don't have a choice and can only afford to buy their shoes in the supermarket but I could afford to get her the trainers or the boots in a proper shoe shop, especially if I passed them off as part of her birthday or christmas present. The issue really is that I don't want to waste the money if I don't have to.

GupX Sat 06-Oct-12 22:48:10

The 'ruin their feet' thing is a myth put about by Clarks.

Obviously, it's important that they fit (you can feel this by feeling her feet in the shoes, checking where her big toes are etc.)

Our DTs have never had 'proper' Clarks shoes and they have perfect feet.

accessorizequeen Sat 06-Oct-12 23:02:02

I'd respectfully disagree with GupX, but this is an issue that parents will often disagree on much like whether to pass on shoes to siblings!

Most of the supermarket shoes don't come in widths, and are usually man-made so don't breathe nor fit properly (leather moulds to the foot). I despair at the amount I have to spend to buy my 4 dc 'proper' shoes but accept it's an essential. They end up with fewer pairs as a result, I'm sure my DD could do with trainers as well as boots but can't afford both so she can manage with boots. I don't think it has to be Clarks though, I always buy ds1 his trainers there as I can't find anywhere else that's narrow enough. I don't think Clarks is particularly good value for money really, they've cornered the market. Shoesforkids does sell Clarks and other brands much cheaper if you know the size and Sports Direct do plenty of leather ones cheaper and they'll advise which brands come up narrow or wide.

A physiotherapist told us last year that shoes from supermarkets etc are fine. DS is hypermobile so has to wear boots, we asked if they needed to be Clarks/Startrite and she said ones from Tesco/Asda would be fine.

The only shoes that ruin feet are ones that don't fit properly or don't offer much support.

Toothiepeg Sat 06-Oct-12 23:05:11

It depends how much walking your child will do. If walking a fair bit then I would want something with a really good sole on it. I buy my shoes, that I wear all day, from decent places for that reason.

The really important thing is that the shoe fits - doesn't squash the child's foot or rub unduly. I've always bought my dcs shoes from a variety of places.

colditz Sat 06-Oct-12 23:10:49

British children don't have the monopoly on healthy feet, therefore Clarks cannot be the only shop in the world that can make decent shoes.

Check the fit.

cerealqueen Sat 06-Oct-12 23:12:19

I never know where I am with this either. DD has had party shoes from Next, but she is only wearing them for a couple of hours at a time. She has also had some beach type sandals from M&S which were thick soled and fully adjustable so seemed like they were supportive.

A friend of mine bough her daughter some cheap trainers fro Asda to wear everyday, but she also has some very very naice shoes from some posho shop which were properly fitted, her reasoning being she didn't want the nice shoes trashed, which seems to me to be completely the wrong way round. confused

I think the shoes that are properly fitted should be the ones they wear most of the time.

FredWorms Sat 06-Oct-12 23:13:28

They are a bit crap though, quality wise. We only tried it once (shoezone) and they started to sort of peel after a couple of weeks. The Clarks' we've had for the last couple of years, though, have been really robust.

Murtette Sat 06-Oct-12 23:18:47

Cereal I think your friend has got it wrong too!
The breathable point is a valuable one, accessorize, so will bear that in mind. In some ways, I'm less bothered about fit as one of DD's feet is almost half a size smaller than the other so obviously her shoes never fit both feet properly. I think I'll keep her in her startrite shoes during the week then she can have cheaper ones for the weekends which I've checked the fit of.

crackcrackcrak Sat 06-Oct-12 23:26:04

I am v fussy about shoes that dd (3) wears all the time. I have loved in from Clarks to Russell and Bromley as locally, the branch staff are so so thorough and careful with fitting etc and they carry a variety of brands as well as Clarks so I don't feel listed to one brand. Jones the boot maker are also good this way.
I really rate kickers at this age - dd has adored all of hers and wears them happily every day whereas she moaned about Clarks sandals and I think they hurt her.
I buy her crocs for nursery and summer etc- lovely and airy and cushioned smile

My parents were v strict with shoes and I was limited to Clarks and startrite when I was a kid. I don't begrudge it, my feet are great now and I've never had any back problems etc.

The way I see it, eventually dd will want crap shoes from primark that will give her blisters etc. I want to keep her in good shoes whilst I can. Besides, her current kickers are mauve with purple laces - she's thinks they are Cinderella princess shoes grin

picnicbasketcase Sat 06-Oct-12 23:28:15

I don't think it makes any difference where you buy them as long as you're sure they fit properly. This 'only Clarks will do' thing is a massive scam to make people pay over the odds for very bog standard footwear.

3duracellbunnies Sat 06-Oct-12 23:28:32

Clarks gave dd2 and insole so her shoes do fit properly. For school/everyday shoes we tend to get Clarks, but they have trainers for the weekend. I could be wrong, but I think I heard/read that cheaper trainers tend to be around an E/F fitting, so perfect for my tribe, not so great if you child has very wide or very narrow feet.

crackcrackcrak Sat 06-Oct-12 23:30:57

IMO, its not that only Clarks will do, it's that it's the only shop that measures the feet and fits the shoes in most towns.

noisytoys Sat 06-Oct-12 23:34:54

We always buy hush puppies because they do a fit left fit right service so if the child has 2 different size feet they sell 2 different size shoes as a pair and they last forever

herecomesthsun Sun 07-Oct-12 02:40:11

Last year, I wanted to encourage DS, then 3, to be a bit more active. He had some beautiful, fitted Startrite shoes. I bought him some Clarks trainers - they had a sale - supposedly fitted as to width. He LOVED the trainers and refused to wear his nice shoes again! Also the trainers were not leather and I thought less supportive than his proper shoes.

Next time I bought him shoes I thought, "What is the point of buying expensive shoes he will not wear? I will get a really good pair of trainers instead!" We have ended up buying Geox. They are not width fitted but suit Ds's feet (H fitting) very well. Since I know they suit his feet, I have been buying at times from Amazon, at times in John Lewis sale (and checking the fit) etc. RRP is £40-£50 but I usually manage to get them for a lot less. They also make for very tough school shoes. DS is happy, we are happy!

When Dd is a little older, I will be looking at Geox for her, too!

Greekstartedit Sun 07-Oct-12 05:21:06

I love Geox herecomesthsun But here in Greece they are shockling expensive like all kids shoes sad

Here also they don't do widths or clarks etc, just bloody expensive shoes with no widths available. Its just a question of learning your kids feet and buying the type of shoe that suits.

My 2 big kids have never worn clarks and their feet are fine.

SavoyCabbage Sun 07-Oct-12 05:40:10

I tend to buy fitted shoes an both my dds have skinny feet (c). You can get lovely shoes on the high street. I would only buy leather shoes, same as I would for myself.

TiggerWearsATriteSmile Sun 07-Oct-12 08:27:37

I always had clarks shoes growing up.
I cried as a teenager when friends had fashionable shoes and I had the sensible ones.

My feet are awful. I have a huge bunion on one foot and the other is not much better. I am not a high heel wearer so I guess genetics plays a big part in foot development.
My DC's have proper shoes, usually ricosta or pablosky and the odd pair from next or M&S for occasion wear.

ByTheWay1 Sun 07-Oct-12 08:38:17

Mine have fitted shoes for school (they are in them all day 5 days a week)

- and whatever they can find that they like and fits their feet for outside of school...

We are lucky - we have Clarks, Jones, Russell and Bromley and 3 independent shoe shops in my town - so you don't have to just get Clarks or Start right for fitted shoes.

My girls both have narrow (small side of junior D !!) feet - in adult size 5 - so can't wear slip ons or anything without laces or a high bar..... we have found that mini-barretts on line come up narrow and do lots of winter boots....

Olivermoliver Sun 07-Oct-12 08:38:52

I like DS to have shop measured and fitted leather shoes for all day wear at school and then I buy him trainers or boots for kicking around in from wherever I see some I like and am happy with the fit. He has had several pairs of trainers from Sainsburys and some really nice Winter boots from Next. He is an F width do most things seem to fit ok.

mumofthemonsters808 Sun 07-Oct-12 08:40:18

Over the years I have spent a small fortune having shoes fitted and buying expensive brands.I think it is extortionate the prices chargd for children's shoes.DD will now squeeze her feet into any shoes that she likes the look off despite them causing blisters and rubbing.I sometimes wonder if it was all a waste of money.

No Clarks shoes for me, it was Timpson's, you were considered rich if you had Clarks shoes.

Ragwort Sun 07-Oct-12 08:41:04

There was a brilliant thread on Mumsnet a few years ago about how succesful the marketing policy is from Clarks, Startrite etc in convincing parents that they have to have 'expensive' shoes. Sorry, can't find it any more.
They really do have the monopoly on selling childrens' shoes and so many people fall for it.
I have never bought expensive shoes for my DS, his feet are fine and he plays sport for the county; the one thing I think is good is not to wear the same pair of shoes all the time and to go barefoot (where practical grin) some of the time.

DolomitesDonkey Sun 07-Oct-12 08:41:45

My parents forced me down the Clarks route and as a result I have square feet and am crippled by pretty shoes. Think on, don't limit your daughters to a life of lesbotronic footwear! ;)

Seriously, non-Clarks are fine, just use your loaf when fitting.

bamboostalks Sun 07-Oct-12 08:54:15

'lesbotronic'? Really? Depressing adjective for decent school wear. Is everything that girls wear supposed to be pink and sparkly then?

SomethingOnce Sun 07-Oct-12 09:11:05

Do you mean 'they' don't wear pretty shoes? confused

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