Moccasins for Children

If you are a parent or a grandparent, you know well how fast children's feet can grow.

Moreover, just like adults, not all children's feet are the same volume, and it can quickly get difficult to find good shoes for babies, kids, and even teenagers, especially if you are on a budget…

Having children ourselves, we have been pushed to find solutions to ensure our kids would have some kind of footwear that respects their morphology, development, and growth. Having to buy or make new shoes every two or three months was not an option for us, so we have a way to make “Growing-Shoes”.

Our baby and kids moccasin design is very simple: a little lace enables swallowing up the extra length by puckering the leather around the ankle. This way, the excess length is not left in front of the toes which could cause the child to trip over. The shoe is tightened by this lace on the heel and on the instep, but the shoe can be slightly loose around the front of the foot.

Having this “shrinking/growing” shoe feature enables you to keep that same pair of moccasins for at least six months but usually even up to one year and more.

Baby Barefoot Moccasins

If you wish, the lace can be replaced by an elastic cord, but we have not chosen this design feature because we noticed that it was harder to adjust the tightness of the elastic to ensure it is not marking the skin and reducing blood flow. The leather lace lets us adjust the tightness every time we put them on, adapting it exactly to the thickness of socks or the fast growth of the baby’s feet. It also prevents the toddlers from losing their shoes if he/she try to take them off.

For bigger kids and teenagers, the bow tie on the front is not so “stylish”, so we offer other designs like the “Summer” moccasins with its laced-up ballerina style or a discreet lace on the heel only.

Summer Moccasins Barefoot Shoes

Soft-Soled and Zero-Drop with High Sensory Feedback
Another important aspect is the soft soles. Many studies are now showing that children have much better balance barefoot or with soft-soled shoes than with more rigid shoes. The sensory feedback they get when walking barefoot or with barefoot shoes is not only pleasant to them but also needed for the good development of their psycho-motricity and their feet muscles.

The pros or being barefoot without the cons of wearing shoes
We are convinced that barefoot walking is healthy for young children, but of course, depending on the ground and weather, they might need some protection, therefore our baby and kids moccasins are a great option.

What model depending on your needs
In winter time, we like to use the sheepskin slippers or the felt moccasins for warmth. The sheepskin slippers are especially practical because they are used as house-shoes and can be put directly into a large pair of rubber boots when the weather is too cold and rainy to go outside with leather moccasins. When comes spring and summer, the rubber boots that were large enough for the boot lining in the winter time are then at the right size…

The leather moccasins can also be used with a felt insole to insolate from cold grounds. If used outside on wet grounds, a thin rubber sole is a good to add. For the warmer season, the “Sun” sandals for kids are as good as the classic little leather moccasins. Note that the “Sun” sandals are a little cooler but also let more dust and sand get into the shoes.

My kids don’t like wearing shoes

We’ve met quite a few parents that are having a really hard time to get their kids to wear shoes. We can totally understand it as we know children have a good instinct of what is right or not for them. Shoes that are too tight, too pointy, too rigid, with a heel or in which they get sweaty can be very uncomfortable for them (not even talking about the look).

If you encounter difficulties on this topic with your child, there are good chances that he/she could like moccasins as they are very barefoot-like: flat, soft, light, tailor-made and adjustable, breathable and protective without being restrictive, and last put not least with high sensory feedback.

A testimony
Here is a testimony of a Dad who took “the risk” of buying moccasins for his children that “hated” shoes in general:

“ I bought a pair of Sun Sandals for my 5 years old daughter and a pair of moccasins for my 8 years old son. Before that, I was always fighting to get them to keep their shoes on. Now I am fighting to get them to take their moccasins off when they come home…”

I can observe in my children (and I think all children) this innocent joy of feeling the ground with their feet. Most shoes would totally shut this down as the thick soles completely inhibit their feelings. This is not the case with our soft leather moccasins.

What options we offer, even for small budgets

One should not underestimate the value of offering good-quality and adapted shoes for their children or grandchildren. Since children grow so fast, I know how tempting it is to buy cheap shoes, even if they are not ideal, but in the long term, this choice could result in unexpected

We know that our custom-made kids' shoes are not cheap, but we realized that they are not much more costly than other good-quality shoes in shops. Moreover, they are custom-made and would last much longer than those from the shops since they are “growing-shoes”.
Nevertheless, we also have options for people with small budgets!
With our video tutorials and patterns, even beginners in craft can make good-quality leather barefoot shoes for babies and children. For small feet, it is easy to recycle leather offcuts or some old leather garments that can be found in second-hand stores or flea markets.

Making moccasins like we do is accessible to all since it doesn’t require more tools than scissors, a marker, an awl, a belt punch, a thick needle and waxed thread.

The Sun Sandals For Kids

The “Sun” Sandals are probably the easiest to make since they do not require any stitching. I believe that it can be a craft project for children from 5 or 6 years old (with some help). After cutting the pattern in leather, it only requires poking holes with a punch and lacing them-up. An extra sole can be glued in leather or thin rubber (optional).

The classic kids' leather moccasins are also a great project to get started with shoe-making as it doesn’t require much leather and they are fast to make. It is a little more technical than the Sun sandals but we had reports from a group of young teenagers who were very successful in making “The Runners” moccasins with their Nature School teacher.

For more adventurous crafters “The Base” tutorial is a must-have that teaches how to make a wide range of low moccasins and boots from the same base pattern. In this tutorial, you can learn how to draw a basic pattern in any size from the outline of one’s feet. It has a specific section about kids' shoes and winter (lined) shoes.