* Or, Baby Needs a New Pair of Shoes!
Presuming that most of my readers aren’t in the age 7-and-under demographic, this week’s VIVOBAREFOOT contest isn’t for you – rather, it’s a chance to pay a giveaway forward. More accurately, you’ll be paying it down, to the little feet of someone you love. That’s because the prize is a pair of VIVOBAREFOOT kids' shoes.
I first reviewed this line of shoes in September, when my then-six-year-old daughter was drafted into service for Running and Rambling Inc., to test-drive the incredibly cute Pally model for this review. She absolutely loved them, wearing them to school practically every day, even using them to smoke the other kids on laps around the track in P.E. class.
This time around, my daughter has turned seven, and the shoes she’s been testing for several weeks are the Oaky, cleverly described on Terra Plana's website as a Mimi-Me version of the Oak, which happens to be my own favorite VIVOBAREFOOT model.
The upper of these shoes is made of nubuck, with a nylon mesh collar and lining that is loosely attached to the upper at a few anchor points. There is a removable memory foam insole, and the entire shoe is completely flexible in all directions to let developing feet move and bend naturally. Overall weight of the shoe is 4 oz, or 3.5oz with the insoles removed.
One difference between the Oaky and its parent shoe is that the Oak has a more all-weather tread pattern on its outsole, while the Oaky (and most of the VB kids shoes) uses a shallower tread pattern like the one used on the adult Dharma. Thickness of the puncture-resistant outsole is a bit less on the kids’ versions, 3.5 mm compared to 4 or 5mm for the adult versions.
Like the Oak, the Oaky has a fairly classic styling that can be used as an all-purpose shoe for just about any kids' activity – and like all VIVOBAREFOOT shoes, it’s durable enough to easily last until your child outgrows them. However in the interest of full disclosure, we did discover one durability problem: the “toggle” piece of leather that holds the ends of the laces in place came loose fairly easily on my daughter’s pair. This is a known issue at Terra Plana that was addressed for next season’s design. We fixed ours by just tying the elasticized laces in a knot; fortunately, the laces are mainly a decorative feature on the Oaky just as they are on the Oak.
I described my rationale for loving this line of children’s footwear in my original Pally review, and since that time nothing has changed to make me hesitate to recommend them to any parent concerned for his or her child’s healthy foot development. As it does with its adult lines, VIVOBAREFOOT has a large selection of children's shoes in various styles and colors, and from now until December 27th, all of those shoes are available at a 25% discount with coupon code RRKIDS. The banner ad at the top of the page will remain in place this week as a reminder.
But if you’re lucky, you won’t even need a discount: one lucky winner selected from the comments below will be awarded a free pair of children’s shoes this week, courtesy of VIVOBAREFOOT. Please note that the largest sizes in this collection are a US kids’ size 3, so if your little ones have bigger feet than that, your options are to sit this giveaway out, or try winning them for a friend or relative.
Since this is a holiday week, we’ll do this contest with a short turnaround time: enter by 5PM Wednesday, December 22 and I’ll announce the winner the next day. Let’s keep entries for this one simple as well with a “one comment, one entry” system. Big thanks to VIVOBAREFOOT for sponsoring this contest, and good luck to everybody!
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