I, sadly, don’t have unlimited funds to set my toddler up with one pair of shoes in every color for every occasion. (Oh, the tragedy of it all.) So what I try to do is find something cute that she can wear with dresses, but also lets her kick up the asphalt on the playground.

Wisconsin-based UMI shoes has hooked us up nicely this Fall, with their wonderful Euro-style handcrafted shoes for kids. My daughter is currently sporting the navy Floret (at left) with splash flowers that jazz up a versatile Mary Jane. The shoes are real leather (explaining the $60 pricetag), the strap conveniently closes with velcro, and the supportive arch and sturdy rubber soles let my daughter take on a soccer ball with as much 2 year-old energy as she can muster.

And worry not, moms of boys – you’re covered too with tons of cool styles for little dudes. (The Zazus are great!)

Let’s just say it’s always a good sign when, on the first wearing, two moms stop you and ask where your kid got her shoes.  Not that I’d care about such things. –Liz

Congratulations to winner Rachel A!


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