Start-Rite invited us to try out their school shoes for the new academic year. With one girl about to launch into year 2 and our smallest starting nursery, we were keen to get uniform ready before the rush of the new term so we called ahead to our local supplier of Start-Rite, Friary Shoes, and made an appointment for the girls to be fitted. It turns out this was a good plan as it meant we were seen straight away and by someone who had the whole process sorted with the patience of a saint.
Start-Rite offer a range of contemporary designs and are renowned for their quality. Our search focused on girls’ shoes but Friary Shoes do stock designs of Start Rite for boys too. Of course, our eldest was attracted to the patent models with butterflies and a little bit of sparkle and while mom wanted plain leather, we gave the girls the choice to try a few styles for fit and to check for comfort. After all, they wear their school shoes more than any other shoes in their wardrobe. The young man who served us was friendly, knowledgeable and more than willing to fetch out any style – pure bliss to a 6 and 3-year-old.
Both girls were fitted carefully and attentively using the appropriate kit. It appears that while I had a vague idea of the sizes of both girls, they have grown somewhat in the foot area since their last formal foot measurements were taken (no judgement needed here, thank you). One even has a right foot bigger than the left – I didn’t know this was a thing but true to form, it’s happened here.
The time taken over making sure the fit was just right was key to our experience. While I didn’t expect for half a size to really have made too much of a difference, it did so we were guided in the right direction and our eldest decided on a pair that she was very happy with and that we were pleased with too. The shoe of choice – The Mary Jane. The classic design in patent leather has a cushioned insole and padded ankle support with rip-tape fastener for her to easily secure herself. She was beaming when she left the shop and is beginning to warm up to the idea of going back to school in two weeks now she has shoes she’s chosen without any interference from either parent.
Our smallest wanted to be just like her big sister and try everything possible. Our fitter obliged and acknowledged our guidance for leather more than patent which I think will be a little more hardwearing for a very busy three year old. The fitting was just as robust and the same care was taken to get the fit just right. We were advised on width and how to make the best choice re-sizing. This time, we went for a T-bar design to hold her smaller feet in place. The Daisy May design has the same great features as the Mary Jane with the added benefit of a flexible sole for comfort too.
Start-Rite shoes have a heritage of over 200 years and a British Company based in Norwich. With the quality that they offer and the range of designs and sizes, what’s not to love? Thank you Start-Rite, both of our girls are set to start their schooling adventures in September with a pair of beautiful new shoes.
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