The thing about kids is that their little feet keep growing into slightly bigger feet that constantly need new shoes.
The other thing about kids is that they often despise trying on new clothing or shoes. The thought of the chore itself is enough to make me put it off a little longer (fine, a lot longer) than I should.
I have attempted to guess my son’s shoe size on more than one occasion, each time with the cockiness of a mum who sees her child’s feet every single day and really should be able tell which shoes will fit those feet. Each time, I’ve been way — way — off, so for the past few years, I’ve been resigned that shoe-shopping with your children is just part of the parenting deal.
But it turns out, if you plan ahead just a little, there are a few ways you can measure your child’s foot at home and then enjoy the solo-shoe-shopping process in peace.
The old-school method
Parents I’ve talked to learned this trick from their own parents. And it’s one of those things that seems so obvious after you learn it: Trace their feet on a piece of paper. (Make sure they’re standing with all their weight on each foot.) Cut out the feet. Bring the cut-outs to the store. You can then measure each paper foot on the store’s measuring tool or you can simply stick it into a shoe to check the fit.
Get fancy with a Squatchi
I assumed that people didn’t buy their own foot-measuring tools, but I assumed wrong. Depending on your budget — or how much value you put on this sort of convenience — you could splurge on this at-home sizing tool for $5.
(As an aside: You can also track the growth of their feet on this, kind of like a height chart for feet. If you’re into that sort of thing.)
Of course, you could also just take them with you to the store. And if you’ve got a child who is hard to size because they have a wide foot or a high instep, that might be your best bet. But I think I’ll go the old-school paper method for my son’s next pair.
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