When I was pregnant with Hudson I bought a giant stack of structured hard soled shoes. I bought them in a size 1, you know always size up, and when he was born he didn't wear a single pair. Have you ever tried to shove a marshmallow into pop bottle. Well that is exactly what it is like trying to shove a chubby baby foot into a structured shoe. He lived in socks the first couple of months and that is when the cool weather hit.
I did my research
After looking up multiple boots that I knew I was not going to squish Hudson's feet into I decided to research what shoes babies really should and shouldn't be wearing. To my surprise it is very well accepted that babies should not be in any kind of hard structured shoes for at least the first 24 months.
Podiatrists Recommend Soft Soles for the First 2 Years
Dr. Jane Anderson, a board-certified podiatrist, says that "You want a flexible shoe without a rigid sole. You want the foot to develop on its own," she says. "In a perfect world, toddlers could walk barefoot but in this case a thin sole protects the feet. Their primary shoes need to be flexible so their foot musculature can develop normally," advises Dr. Anderson.
When you squish a babies foot into a structured sole it can greatly impact their foot development. Oh, believe me in that pile of shoes that I bought for Hudson there was a pair of Converse High tops, baby Jordan's and even a cute pair of Timberland work boots. This kid was going to rock those kicks until I found out that although they are cute they can be detrimental to his foot development.
A Podiatrist Explains the Support Toddler Feet Need
Miguel Cunha, podiatrist at Gotham Footcare in Manhattan, explains that children's anatomy and development determines when they should begin wearing shoes at all. "With children, their bones aren't fused in the early stages of development and they fuse as the child starts to grow. Before they're ambulatory [mobile/walking] , children start to walk anywhere from 9 months, typically a year, and some a little bit later at a year and a half. Before then you can have something soft, and after you want to support their feet to help avoid them injuring their feet [soles]".
There has been a lot of research on baby foot development and the one thing that is agreed upon is that babies should be in a soft, flexible shoe if any shoes at all. So before you grab those designer kicks consider looking into soft sole options to support your babies foot development.
Huddy Buddies: The Perfect Soft Sole Shoes
After all of my research I set out to make a warm soft sole boot for Hudson. He already had some wonderful handmade Mocs for spring and summer but nothing for the Canadian winter. These booties have a bunch of mother approved features and are cruelty free. The soft sole is actually made up of vegan suede which makes it extremely flexible and carried your baby over multiple size. The vegan suede also allows them to be machine washable and more than durable for your little one. The insole in a thick plush fur and the uppers are hand crochet with a soft luxury wool blend yarn for warmth. The laces are locked into the boot which allows you to tighten them up to ensure they stay on but they also cannot be pulled out by busy baby hands.
The best thing about Huddy Buddies is that they do not hinder your babies foot development. The soft flexible sole allows their feet to develop naturally and supports proper bone fusion by not hindering their range of motion. The vegan suede sole is naturally grippy allowing for them to be less slipper on hard surfaces that socks. Their lightweight also encourages walking by providing babies to balance directly on their feet.
If you are looking for a great soft sole option for winter boots for you beginner walker you can also use Huddy Buddies as liners in the popular Stonz boots.
Not to mention, they are handmade with love by a mother of two that researched her heart out to make the best baby slippers for your little ones. As my kids grew up I added more sizes and even decided to include ladies sizes. Nothing like supporting your babies foot development while supporting handmade and local!