I've been learning that baby feet grow really fast. By the time I get all happy that a pair of shoes finally fits our daughter perfectly after she's been wearing them for a month, seems like two weeks later they are too small. I can hardly keep up! Since I am pretty picky about the shoes she wears and I like things that are healthy for developing feet and aren't toxic, it is a challenge to say the least. In my quest for the best baby shoes I've stumbled on Bobux and I am loving everything about them. They were kind enough to send us a pair of pink i-Walk Mary Janes for review.
Quality & Value: I've seen my share of cheap shoes, the ones that only last one season. Not so with these! Ours are new, but I know families whose babies all go through the same pair of Bobux shoes and they still look great. They have a ton of life and will give you unexpectedly long mileage. The i-Walk shoes are priced at $47.95, honestly a bit more than I would want to pay for baby shoes, but I consider it a worthwhile investment for the health of your baby's feet and perhaps not just one baby. I'll give you a tip though, in their specials section you can get shoes for as low as $12.99 for Bobux Originals, $17.99 for i-Walk Junior, and $25 for i-Walk shoes. The Bobux original shoes are made by hand in New Zealand! Those are great for small babies, but they also have toddler sizes that are great to wear as slippers at home. The i-Walk and i-Walk Junior are made in Indonesia.
How is this green: Out of all baby shoes these are among the greenest. The leather used to make Bobux shoes is of the highest quality standards and it is not tanned utilizing heavy metals. So if you see your baby gnawing on the shoes - don't worry, they aren't toxic. Now if you see your baby chewing the shoes you got him at the local department store, you should worry. The biodegradable leather has been developed to higher safety standards than that of the United States, the ones in Europe and Germany in particular. I also love the natural rubber sole, a much better alternative to anything synthetic. Hey, most teething toys you would buy at a chain baby store are more toxic than these shoes! Not that I'm suggesting you use them as a teether!
Fit & Design: Our shoes are a couple of sizes too big right now (see photo), so she'll be wearing them in the fall and probably at home in the winter. What I love is how they are really designed for baby feet - not just a miniature version of adult shoes. There is room for chubby toes, the velcro strap goes all the way around so it will not open easily on an active toddler, and the soles are appropriately flexible for developing feet. Likewise, the original Bobux and the i-Walk Junior have even softer soles for beginner walkers. All the styles they have are absolutely adorable! You're sure to get compliments and questions about where you bought them. If you have problems with socks staying on baby feet, you should also check out the Bobux Baby Socks on their website.
Company: Bobux was launched in New Zealand in 1991by Chris and Colleen Bennett. The original soft soled leather Bobux shoes were designed for their oldest daughter Chloe who was nine months old at the time. Word spread fast as other mothers wanted a similar kind of shoe for their babies. I love companies that are started by parents with the invention of something for their babies that they could not find on the market.
Be sure to stop by the Eco-Babyz blog for a chance to win a pair of your choice of Bobux shoes, giveaway ends June 9th, 2010!
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