How to Measure Children's Feet for Shoes

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A proper fit is important when buying your child shoes.
A proper fit is important when buying your child shoes. (Image: feet image by michael langley from Fotolia.com)

Children can often have rapid growth spurts that leave parents wondering what size shoe to buy them. Some parents also wait until their toddlers are walking before they purchase their child's first set of shoes. Measuring a child's foot is not hard, and can be done at a shoe store or at home. If you measure at home, you can make online shoe purchases with the proper sizing in mind.

Things You'll Need

  • Socks
  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Ruler

Place a pair of socks on your child's foot. (If you are buying sandals, you can skip to the next step.) It is important to measure the foot with a sock on if the socks are going to be warn with the shoes on a regular basis.

Lay a sheet of paper on a hard floor, such as a wooden or tiled surface.

Ask your child to place his foot on the paper.

Use your pencil to mark where the heel is. Then mark where the largest toe is. Your child can then step off of the paper.

Place a ruler that uses inches on the heel line, and note where the toe line is. Write this number down.

Add 1/4-inch to that number. This will leave a little bit of room for growing.

Look up the number of inches on an online sizing chart. The chart will convert the inches to children's shoe sizes for you.

Tips & Warnings

  • You should measure both feet just in case one foot is longer than the other. Then, use the longest foot measurement to purchase a pair of shoes for your child.
  • You may want to have your child try on the shoes before you buy them. Some companies make shoes a little tighter than others. You want your child to be comfortable.

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