Buying your childs first pair of shoes is a big deal, you want them to be nice looking but also good quality to make sure their tiny feet are well protected and looked after. For me it was important to go to a proper shoe shop and get her feet properly measured and the shoes fitted. The shop we chose had a wide range of start rites shoes and it was the Tilly shoes in red patent leather that we chose.
The tilly shoes are the perfect little girls shoes with the main body made from patent leather, a silver buckle on a t-bar design to allow you to adjust the fit of the shoes to make sure they stay on, a padded ankle support for ultimate comfort and good solid rubber soles that match the colour of the patent leather. I love the pretty silver flower design on the top of the shoes, it adds a pretty detail without being too much or overly blingy.
The shoes are available in a number of sizes allowing you to choose both the correct size and width, which is really important for supporting your childs feet properly. They also come in a choice of colours, we chose the red.
Being shoes for a toddler they need to be hard wearing and these certainly are my daughter wore them day in day out and we experienced no scuffing or any signs of the shoe coming away from the sole, they still looked practically brand new and fit her so well.
The shoes cost me around £40 from an independent shoe shop which seems quite costly for a pair of childrens shoes but you definitely get what you pay for compared to cheap shoes from a supermarket/non shoe shop. Although from what I can tell from start rites website the Tilly style is no longer available they have plenty of similar styles all around the £30-40 mark. Start rite shoes are widely available on the high street and also online so its easy to get hold of a good quality pair of shoes for your little one although I do suggest getting their feet properly measured.
Overall I love these shoes, they tick all the boxes for us. They are pretty, classic style, wear extremely well,support my little ones feet and last. You may be spending a little more than at other shops but you get what you pay for.
5 out of 5 stars.
WHY chose start rite?
Start rite started its life way back in 1792 in Norwich, UK. In 1955 it was given the Royal Warrant by Queen Elizabeth II, and were worn by the Windsor children. It got another Royal Warrant from 1989 to 2003 when Prince William and Prince Harry wore start rite shoes. And what is good enough for a prince and princess is DEFINATLY good enough for my children!
The Tilly range from start rite retail at £32, and comes in Pink leather, Red leather, Black Patent, Purple patent and Burgundy patent. The Tilly range benefits from having a t-bar, which provides a better fit if your child has a high in-step. It also has a buckle fastening to ensure a better fit and better adjustability. A big plus is that it is made with a leather upper and a leather lining. Leather linings help to absorb moisture and keep little feet dry. The leather upper is dyed-through which means even when the shoes are scuffed they keep their colour.
We managed to pick our pair of TILLY shoes up in the sale at £14 and chose burgundy patent. Our little princess was a size 3f, though one of her feet is half a size smaller (2.5f!!) We found that the buckle was very useful in ensuring we could fasten the shoe on the smaller foot a bit tighter to ensure a better fit. We never experienced the shoes slipping on her feet nor did they ever fall off.
The look of the shoes was in my opinion, beautiful. the t-bar gives it a classic girly and timeless look, these shoes were fashionable years ago, they're fashionable today and will be fashionable for years to come. The colour we chose, burgundy, is a perfect balance of girly but not too bright and garish. We found the colour went well with many different colour outfits and the style meant they matched trousers as well as they matched skirts. The flower adds an extra bit of girly-ness.
Our little girl loves shoes, and she especially loved these ones. she happily went to fetch them in the morning to put on and would throw a paddy when it came to taking them off. I take this as an indication that they are comfortable. Another plus is that I never found any red marks on her feet from rubbing, something I found happened with another brand of shoe.
Some may think that these shoes are too hard for such small feet, they are a proper walking shoe, apposed to a crawler or a pre-walker/cruiser. we chose these because she was walking at 10 months and we found pre-walkers/cruisers were too soft for the road we live on; a stoney dirt track.
These shoes were great for her walking around outside on the road, the sole was hard enough to ensure the small stones didn't hurt her feet as she walked. But more importantly it wasn't too hard that she couldnt bend her foot and walk well. In fact she has learnt to run and climb in these shoes.
We wore these shoes for 6 months before they have finally got too small. 6 months of walking and crawling outside, climbing on rocks (shes part monkey!!), trips and falls and I must say I am VERY impressed at how these shoes have lasted. Even with all the trips and falls they still look as good as new. The toes have no scuffs even after been scraped along the floor whilst crawling and been scraped up walls while climbing. The buckles still fasten well the holes haven't been stretched. The stitching is all still in tact ad the sole is in pretty good condition.
These shoes really have had some wear and tear and yet they still look in great condition, they would probably last a few years if childrens feet didn't grow so fast.
I wouldn't hesitate to recommend the Tilly range from start rite. They are long lasting and hard wearing and look so pretty when worn. I would also recommend the start rite brand over other brands, and NO I don't work for start rite. we are a one job family so need things which are cheap but last. we got a fantastic bargain with these shoes, but I wouldn't hesitate to pay full price for another pair as they really do last.