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CARING FOR TINY TOES Q&A

WE ASK OUR RESIDENT FOOTHEALTH EXPERT,
BOB HARDY SOME KEY QUESTIONS ABOUT CARING
FOR FEET AND THE IMPORTANCE OF FITTED SHOES...

Find out more about Kids Foothealth

WHAT SIMPLE THINGS CAN I DO TO KEEP
MY BABY’S FEET HEALTHY?

  • Stimulate your baby’s muscles by tickling their toes, feet and legs, and let them kick around a lot.
  • Bathe their feet daily in warm, soapy water and dry in between the toes carefully.
  • Let them go barefoot whenever possible.
  • Keep nails trimmed straight across and not too short.
  • Inspect their feet regularly for any signs of damage or infection.

WHAT SHOULD I TRY TO AVOID?

Try not to put your baby in sleepsuits, socks, tights, or bootees which are too tight and restrict their toes and feet. Where possible keep to natural fabrics as all synthetic socks and tights stop the skin on the feet breathing properly.

HOW OFTEN SHOULD I TAKE MY BABY
TO BE FITTED FOR SHOES?

From their first pair of shoes until they are about two years old, you should aim to get their shoes fit checked by a trained shoe fitter after 6 – 8 weeks and then as recommended by a shoe fitter until the shoes are outgrown.

HOW FAST DO MY BABY’S FEET GROW?

In their first year their feet will grow about 25mm (three whole English shoe sizes) and then about 16mm (2 whole sizes) each year after that until they’re five.

WHY IS IS SO IMPORTANT TO GET SHOES WITH
THE RIGHT FIT FOR MY BABY?

Less than a third of children have an “average” foot width and their feet are changing internally, externally and they experience up to seven stages of walking development. To allow us to walk correctly shoes need to fit much more precisely than any other item of clothing. So an accurate fit achieved by shoes available in half sizes and width fittings and fitting by a trained shoe fitter are essential to allow healthy development to take place.

HOW CAN I TELL WHEN MY BABY'S
SHOES NEED REPLACING?

It is possible to follow a few simple checks at home (you can find information here) however if you have bought your baby’s shoes from a store selling Clarks, then they will happily check them, for free, any time you care to call in to the store.

A SUPER EASY RECIPE TO RECORD AND TREASURE THOSE TINY LITTLE FEET - OR A GORGEOUS GIFT FOR GRANDPARENTS.

ONE

Mix all the ingredients in a large bowl and knead until smooth and stretchy. If the dough feels sticky add a bit more flour. If it feels dry and crumbly, add a bit more water.

TWO

Divide the dough in half and press each half into a small, lightly floured bowl (slightly bigger than the baby’s feet), then turn it out onto a floured surface – you should have a perfectly smooth, flat surface as a canvas for your baby’s foot.

THREE

Gently but firmly push your baby’s foot into the dough, then lift straight off again – if it’s not quite right, knead the dough and try again! Repeat with the other foot or try a bigger bowl to do both feet at once. If you want to make a hanging decoration, simply poke a hole through the top with a pencil.

FOUR

Preheat your oven to 100˚C/200˚F/lowest gas setting, then put your foot impressions on greaseproof paper on a baking tray. Bake in the oven for 3 hours, then leave to cool before painting in the colour of your choice – acrylic paints are best!

MAKIING YOUR OWN RUBBER STAMP IS EASY; CREATE SOMETHING FUN, AND JUST ADD FABRIC PAINT TO CUSTOMISE YOUR BABY'S VEST AND BABYGROS WITH YOUR OWN UNIQUE DESIGN.

ONE

Prepare your design – either directly onto rubber, or use greaseproof paper to trace the design. Try to get your image as close as possible to the edges – it makes it easier to cut.

TWO

Slice away the negative space around your image using your lino cutter, making sure there are no jagged edges.

Don’t cut too deep – just enough so your design stands out. Leave plenty of rubber as a base so it’s nice and sturdy when you’re stamping.

THREE

Dip into some fabric paint and try on a piece of paper first, then wipe clean and tidy up any edges until you get the perfect print.

FOUR

Stamp your fabric and leave to dry!

TIP

Try a simple block design at first; once you’ve got the hang of it, try carving out sections inside the design too, and make something really special!

Selected with the help of one of our favourite Interior and Baby stylists, Julie Mansfield, whose work you will often see in Vogue Bambini and ST Magazine amongst other titles.

A mixture of design classics and classics in the making, we love this selection of special things for special little people. The trend for more individual and craft-inspired pieces continues for Spring/Summer 2014, with lots of natural materials to introduce babies to a mix of textures.

Knitted Fox Head Wall Decoration,
by Sincerely Louise, available from
molly-meg.co.uk

Bird Stickers,made from 60/70’s
Vintage Wallpaper, by Inke Heiland,
available from smallable.com

Cloud Lamp40x25cm, Smoked
Oak Veneer, by ferm-living.com

Khaki Luxembourg
Miniaturized Chair,

by Fermob, available
from smallable.com

Owl Small Cushion,100% cotton, made
in Finland, Available from serendipity.fr

Birthday Rosette Badge,
Handmade in the UK 100%
felt wool with Satin Trim
(requests available), from
molly-meg.co.uk

GG* Tsumiki,41 Coloured Blocks, 310x70x325mm
Beech Wood, available from carousel-carousel.com

01. Peek A Boo By Janet & Allan Ahlberg.

This classic story is one every child will love.

02. The Rainbow Fish By Marcus Pfister.

A lovely bedtime story book, thanks to the restful colours and soothing, gentle story.

03. The Very Hungry Caterpillar By Eric Carle.

Babies will love the bright colours, whilst toddlers can count all the caterpillar’s yummy snacks.

04. Goodnight Moon (cloth edition) By Margaret Wise Brown.

The perfect bedtime book, with quiet words and sleepy time pictures to lull your child to sleep.

05. Moo Baa La La La By Sandra Boynton.

Lots of silliness for all ages, with simple rhymes, animal noises and fun illustrations.

06. We Are Going On A Bear Hunt By Michael Rosen & Helen Oxenbury.

Imagine the fun of being on a bear hunt – through tall wavy grass, swampy mud and a swirling, whirling snowstorm!

It’s never too soon to start reading to your baby – it not only helps them learn language and listening skills, it’s also a lovely way for you to spend quiet time together. Here are a few of our much-loved storybooks to read and cherish.

There’s nothing cuter than tiny footprints printed on a plate – at The Ceramics Café, you can create something with your little one that’s unique and special.
ceramicscafe.com

HERE ARE A FEW OF
OUR FAVOURITE WAYS TO
HAVE SOME FUN WITH YOUR
LITTLE ONE, WHETHER YOU’RE
FEELING A LITTLE CREATIVE
OR FULL OF ENERGY THAT
NEEDS TO ESCAPE WE’VE
GOT IT COVERED...

Aquababies is not just about teaching essential baby swimming skills, it’s about having fun too. Find a class near you, and make a big splash!
aquababies-uk.com

Little Kickers is football training for toddlers – fun, informal classes that build confidence, co-ordination through lots of ball-kicking fun!
littlekickers.co.uk

Fancy watching a movie? Try Newbies at Odeon cinemas, where you can take your newborn and watch the latest releases without worrying if they get a bit noisy!
odeon.co.uk/fanatic/newbies

Brings stories and nursery rhymes to life through specially developed yoga-inspired moves, combining exercise with lots of fun.
yogabugs.com

The Clarks museum is packed with over 300 years of shoe history – it’s not only a fascinating insight into how shoes have evolved over the centuries, but also a wonderful place to find inspiration for our latest designs. We love the shape and colour of this pair of girl’s first shoes from the early 1950s – they remind us of the drawings from Enid Blyton stories and Ladybird books about trips to the seaside.

They were called Tinkerbell, designed for those all-important first steps and featured a recycled rubber sole that was light, flexibile and hard-wearing, pioneering technology at the time.

One of the many things we’ve learned over the years is that mums want stylish, beautiful shoes for their little ones, and also shoes that support and care for their growing feet. These Tinkerbell shoes are a great example of how we brought these features together in the 1950s, and we’re still doing it today.

A child’s first steps will unlock a whole new world of adventures for them. Everything a child sees and does for the first time is a magical experience and the great outdoors is just waiting to be  explored.

Choose a lovely sunny day and pack up a basket of yummy sandwiches, cupcakes, juice and a rug. Ask your child to gather together a collection of favourite cuddly toys and head out into the fresh air. Wander along the street to the nearest expanse of lush green grass. Unfurl the rug, spread out your feast while your little one gets the guests ready to enjoy a teddy bear’s picnic.

While away the afternoon: blow fluffy dandelion clocks and discover the time, squash a yellow buttercup into your chin to find out if you like butter, thread a daisy chain headdress fit for a fairy princess, collect fallen cherry blossom petals and scatter them on the wind.

Tire out tiny legs with a game of hide and seek, kick a ball or play a game of grandmother’s footsteps. As the sun begins to slip towards the horizon see how long your shadows have grown, running and jumping on them as you wind your way back home.

Adventurewalksbooks.co.uk

Music festivals have become increasingly family-friendly over the past decade, with lots of fun activities for children (and grown-ups) of all ages. If you don’t fancy one of the big events, you’ll find lots of smaller family festivals all over the UK. Here are a few of our favourites.

Deer Shed, North Yorkshire

25th - 27th July 2014

A family festival full of great music
and entertainment.

Find Out More

BEAUTIFUL DAYS, DEVON

15th - 17th August 2014

Winner of BEST FAMILY FESTIVAL
at the UK Festival Awards 2011.

Find Out More

EDEN, SCOTLAND

13th - 15th June 2014

Eco-friendly celebration of music,
dance, colour, culture and community.

Find Out More

JUST SO, CHESHIRE

15th - 17th August 2014

A truly special festival where you play,
revitalise and return to the world full of joy.

Find Out More

GREEN MAN, wales

15th - 18th August 2014

Claims to be the most family-friendly festival
in Wales, with bags of free fun and activities.

Find Out More

LOLLIBOP, LONDON

Dates TBA (Check website)

The big bash for little people - the only festival
where all the entertainment is for children.

Find Out More

A child’s first steps will unlock a whole new world of adventures for them and you. Everything a child sees and does for the first time is a magical experience and the great outdoors is just waiting to be explored. So pull on some warm boots, wrap up snuggly in gloves, hats and scarves and take your precious bundle out onto the streets and discover some of your very own outdoor adventures.

Give yourself plenty of time: an hour can be whiled away under a conker tree in a garden square; a short walk can become an epic trail. Children love to hide and be discovered: chose a safe and secret place together to build a camp. Go on a bear hunt.

Catch falling autumn leaves in the park. Or pile them up in vast clumps and kick them in the air. See who can gather the biggest and shiniest of all conkers; enjoy the delight on your child’s face as you help them unpeel the prickly green shell and reveal their prize.

Count your steps as tired feet wend their way home. Try not to step on the cracks in the pavement or the bears might get you. Reward your little adventurer with a frothy hot chocolate and enjoy their glowing cheeks and the bonus of a good night’s sleep ahead.

Visit adventurewalksforfamilies.co.uk for more ideas and inspiration.

ONE OF OUR FIRST SHOES PRODUCT MANAGERS, CLAIRE HARRISON, GIVES US A LITTLE INSIGHT INTO THE SEASON’S TRENDS AND PICKS OUT HER FAVOURITE STYLES FROM THE SPRING/SUMMER COLLECTION...

“We’re really excited about the stylish First Shoes collection for SS14 – our core range is inspired by different global cultures, whilst our early season shoes are easy-to-wear sporty hybrids for boys and simple pumps for girls. The high summer range is about jungles and explorers – we had loads of fun with bright colours and prints. A great range for summer holidays!”

Crazy Rock

Crazy Rock - Denim
Boys First Walkers

Just like dad…
These street style-inspired shoes are made with premium supersoft leathers and have a specially designed flex groove sole, perfect for first time walkers. I love the bright contrast lining and laces - a real mini-me style.

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Dance Joy

Dance Joy - Mint
Girls First Walkers

A place in my heart…
...goes to Dance Joy, it’s the classic, stylish pump for summer parties and everyday wear. With plently of growing room built in, adjustable rip tape fastenings and its on-trend colour, it’s the perfect pair of shoes for growing girls this season.

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Softly Go

Softly Go - Grey Combo
Boys First Walkers

My recommendation…
The perfect versatile shoe for this season. Inspired by Clarks retro running shoe designs, with a mixture of leathers and suede that are super soft, lightweight and flexible. I love the bright blue colour pops and the elastic lace and rip tape bar combo, as it’s easy to get on and off - perfect for wriggly feet.

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Ida Dotty

Ida Dotty - Anthractite
Girls First Pre Walkers

My personal favourite…
I absolutely love Ida Dotty. Such a beautiful bar shoe, fully leather lined so they’re supersoft and breathable. With fun polka dot colours and a neon pink bow, this is the ideal shoe to give a little girl’s summer outfit a flash of colour and excitement.

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