We spoke to Faye Wilson, Children's Shoe Buyer at department store John Lewis, to get her top tips on how to tackle what your children are wearing on their delicate, growing feet.
"Badly fitted shoes will stop your baby's feet growing correctly," Faye says. "It is important that once they start walking by themselves, they are properly fitted by an expert with their first pair of shoes."
Faye's 10 Top Tips
1. Always choose a natural material like leather. This will allow baby's foot to breathe easily and stay comfortable.
2. Make sure the sole is non-slip, soft and flexible. This will maintain grip on the shoes for when baby is beginning to move more independently.
3. Choose a lightweight shoe for their first pair. A heavy pair of shoes will restrict your baby's movement
4. Ensure there is enough room for your baby's foot to continue to grow, but be careful there is not too much space to create a tripping hazard.
5. The inside of the shoe must be smooth and seamfree. I would recommend having a good feel around the inside yourself.
6. The shoe doesn't necessarily need to have buckles, as long as there is a protective strap on the shoe. T-bars, Mary-Jane styles and velcro are all good solutions.
7. All feet are different. The width of ankles, heel height and arch shape vary massively so avoid buying a pair of cute shoes without getting them professionally fitted.
8. It is important to consider the climate you live and/or spend a lot of time in. You do not want your baby's feet to be too hot or cold when they are taking those precious early day steps, as this will make them uncomfortable.
9. Remember your baby is not able to tell you if their shoes are rubbing or too tight so make sure you get a trained fitter, such as a John Lewis Partner, to give you expert advice.
10. Baby's feet grow rapidly so every six to eight weeks is a good time, to ensure they are in the correct fitting shoes. John Lewis is the only department store to offer both a Clarks and a Start-rite fitted shoe service. All John Lewis advisors have all been trained by both Clarks and Start-rite and will be able to advise you on the best shoe style and brand for your baby.
Happy shoe shopping!