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To think Clarks is taking the piss

37 replies

Ianhislopseyebrow · 20/01/2024 16:25

Both my children were measured at Clarks as an E fitting (they’re toddlers)
The shop had one pair of black shoes in each size so they suggested to try online.
online have a few pairs of black shoes in their sizes and one colourful pair in each size, both of which they have had before.
AIBU to think that if clarks are going to make measure feet then they should make some more shoes that cater to non-standard widths?
where do you shop for your narrow-footed children? Or does it actually not matter and they’d be ok in ones that are officially too wide?

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

72 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
KarenNotAKaren · 20/01/2024 16:31

My DD used to be an E as a toddler and we had the same issue - I just used to buy Velcro shoes and make them tighter!

8misskitty8 · 20/01/2024 16:35

My DD’s both had narrow feet. Clark’s didn’t stock shoes narrow enough for them. We had to get start rite shoes for them which are crazy expensive.
They had only 1 choice of shoe for school for about 8 years.

madnessitellyou · 20/01/2024 16:37

We have the same issue with dd2. She's actually officially a D. Clarks simply couldn't fit her shoes correctly so we've either used an independent shoe shop, or lately John Lewis, who have shoes made by other companies that seem to have different fits.

She's in Year 8 now and I'm hoping that her feet might stop growing soon so that I can just buy the same again!

SparkleyMud · 20/01/2024 16:38

I don't understand why you need to get feet measured. Go to somewhere that has more options and just try shoes on..What's wrong with that?

Frankincense88 · 20/01/2024 16:41

I didn't work for Clarks but am trained shoe fitter and worked for a couple of high street competitors for 5 years. Also was a D fitting as a child so know the struggle all too well!

The Clarks range for narrow feet has always been poor. I had to have Start-Rite as a child but they do come up half a size bigger than other brands.

My daughter has teeny little feet (albeit an E/F fitting) and she wears Ricosta or Petasil. Ricosta are quite narrow depending on the style. Our go to for narrow footed children was Ecco but I believe they've stopped making children's shoes now so I'd say your best bet would be Start Rite.

DragonFly98 · 20/01/2024 16:42

E isn't particularly narrow, my dc are a C width.

HalloumiGeller · 20/01/2024 16:43

My son was the opposite, he was the widest fitting they had! Lol.

I bought Clarks when they were little and couldn't tell me properly how they feel. As soon as they were old enough to communicate properly how the shoes fitted I stopped buying them as they're so pricey!

Luhou · 20/01/2024 16:48

Startrite are much better for narrow feet and designs usually nicer. They do come up a bit bigger than clarks though so I wouldn't buy a like for like size.

sparkellie · 20/01/2024 16:53

Clarks around here are awful. Both with actual shoe fitting and choices. My dd has E width feet, and if left to their own devices they constantly choose shoes that fall off her feet. Every time I have taken her I have had to point this out to them, or take her back when my ex took her, as he took their word that they fitted but she was covered in blisters by day 3. I don't think they train their staff to fit them properly anymore.
They aren't good quality either now. The shoes I got her in Sept need replacing now,even though they still fit. I'll be going elsewhere this time.

LGBirmingham · 20/01/2024 16:58

I had this issue as a child and could only get this horrible plain black leather shoe that was orderedin especially, Think I was a C or a D. I hated it. When I was older I refused and just wore wider shoes. Nothing terrible has happened to my feet. I think it would be more of a problem trying to fit wide feet into a size too narrow?

youhavenoidea123 · 20/01/2024 17:01
gymbummy · 20/01/2024 17:04

I always had wide feet to squeeze into hideous Clarks shoes. I now have bunions on my big and little toe joints and will soon need to wear flippers I think

VimtoVimto · 20/01/2024 17:10

My daughter was a D fitting in Clarks which were nearly impossible to find. I used to buy either Startrite or some European brands like Ricosta and Elefanten. There did seem to be more independent children’s shoe shops around in the 1990s.

baileybrosbuildingandloan · 20/01/2024 17:11

Mine had extra wide feet and I once had to do a 100 mile round trip to get some that for. This was circa 1990!

stopmefeelingsick · 20/01/2024 17:35

Back in the 70's we used to pile into the car and drive many miles to the nearest big city to get Startright shoes for mine and my brother's narrow feet. It's nothing new

DelurkingAJ · 20/01/2024 17:40

I gave up on Clark’s when my C fitting DC was told they could go half a size DOWN to get shoes to fit.

Someone here recommended this wonderful shoe shop when I couldn’t get even Startrite slim enough and they gave help on brands over the phone (as they had nothing in stock at the time)

Shoe shop and shoe repairs Southampton

W. J. French & Son is an independent family shoe shop, which has been trading in Southampton since 1803 and sells Ladies, men’s and children’s shoes and has an onsite shoe repair workshop.

ToastyBreads · 20/01/2024 17:49

@sparkellie same - my daughter’s shoes are starting to come away from the sole, not just in one place but all around the edges. Bought in September and don’t have the receipt, also paid with a gift voucher so I doubt they will replace them. If they don’t, that’s the last time I’m using them.

Op I have had the same issues. They never seem to have shoes in stock and always say they can order them in. They carry a huge range now and I think they have too many for the shop. I don’t want to go twice!

Petrine · 20/01/2024 17:56

As a child my daughter was a C fitting. We bought Startright as they were the only ones to fit her.

Watchinghockey · 20/01/2024 18:02

Startrite are so much better quality and for different widths. I used to go to a local independent but all our local ones closed so I bought the measuring gauge from Startrite website and order online now direct from them. It's worked fine.

BranstonPickleandPeanutButter · 20/01/2024 18:33

It's mostly a con. Buy a decent shoe, spread your fingers over the toes to make sure they can move, about a thumb between the biggest toe and the length of the shoe (although we were told to go smaller for quicker return customers), feel that the ankle doesn't rub against the side of the shoe. Make them run and make sure they don't slip. Tada shoe fitting. Velcro shoes are amazing.

IbizaToTheNorfolkBroads · 20/01/2024 19:01

DS has very narrow feet and very low arches. When he was 2, Clark's measured him as a C width! I've never been able to get Clark's shoes to fit him. Other brands, especially the German brand Superfeet, always fitted him much better.

He's 15 now, with size 14 feet. It's very hard to buy him shoes that fit, as all manufacturers think that long feet are wide. He needed new school shoes this term, they are about twice the volume of his feet!

CupOfCoffeeandaPineappleChunk · 20/01/2024 19:03

Dds feet are very verynarrow. Generally she goes down at least half a size than she is measured as to compensate in clarks shoes. Start rite, and petasil in lindependent shops as well as some other brands come up narrow but often its a case of altering the size (length) and style to get the best fit. A really good shoe fitter will be your best find ever, they won't simply stick whatever number the measure says, they'll use their knowledge and experience. It makes an enormous difference.

Caspianberg · 20/01/2024 19:08

We live in Europe and buy European shoe brand like superior and bobux for our 3 year old. We take him to ‘proper’ shoe shoes to be measured and fitted. They have never ever measured the width, just the length and then tried on shoes that sized and checked what styles fit best.
I have never seen widths ordering online, just eu shoe sizes

hotdiggetydog · 20/01/2024 19:11


WantOutOfRatRace · 20/01/2024 19:13

Mine have really wide feet. Every time we go to Clarks, I say that they're really wide so just bring out whatever they have in the right size. Every time the assistants insist that DD should look at the shoes and choose the ones she likes....then they go in the back and come out saying "we don't have those, we only have this one in her size or this other one that might fit". She ends up with the same ones every time.

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