Transition is pretty much happening everyday when you have little ones. Weather is changing, milestones are being hit, likes/dislikes are developing, and in my extended family, babies are always being born.

It’s hard to keep up.

So when fall weather hit out of no where, I realized I was in a pinch for new kid shoes. We needed to transition out of easy slip on sandals back to socks and sneakers.

As a mother of two, sneakers are my worst nightmare.

Thats four pairs of socks, four wrestling matches to squeeze feet in shoes, and four races to tie shoes before the feet run away.

My daughter is transitioning into walking so this fall I knew she would need a good pair of solid walking shoes. While my son is transitioning into an opinionated “three-anger” and pretty much controls what he wears and when he wears it.

So with fall rolling in I was scared leaving the house was going to start taking 3 hours.

Then I found ikiki shoes!

Who is ikiki Shoes?

A dad with growing kids came up with ikiki shoes in 2009. He was actually an engineer looking for shoes that were healthy and fun for kids, and not just shrunken adult shoes. He understood kid feet are in the most important developmental stage of life, and therefore needed the correct support and design. ikiki has reimagined kid’s shoes and has used the best materials to make their products breathable, comfortable, and fun.

Squeaky Shoes?

Before you freak out, please promise to read on. ikiki shoes have built in squeakers.

While living in China, I saw kids wearing squeaker shoes daily. At first I didn’t get it. Why would you want to hear that all day?

Then I saw it in action.

New walkers smiling from ear to ear as they heard the squeaking. It actually is a genius educational tool. It teaches kids cause and effect which is big milestone for littles.  The squeak is also providing a multi sensory activity for walkers; feeling feet walk while hearing squeaking in unison. I don’t think I’ve every seen my daughter smile so big than when she first wore her ikiki’s. As I held her hands and she jumped, the squeaking brought giggles and entertainment.

It also provides a safety measure. I remember seeing a mom turn around to talk to her friend and her daughter taking off. Immediately the mother heard the quickening of squeaks and turned around to chase her little one back to safety. These shoes are great for in stores and parks when you are trying to multitask. Rather than looking for groceries and watching kids, you can actually look at what you are buying while listening to your child’s actions.

 Adjustable Squeaker

Like I said, squeaker shoes are no new invention. However, ikiki shoes are built with a patent-pending adjustable squeaker design. With a simple flip of a switch you, or your child, can turn the squeaks off. So when heading to the library or movie theater, or you just need a bit of quiet, ikiki shoes can be silenced.

I liked that it was simple to turn the squeaks on and off. My 2.5 year old son figured it out within minutes of wearing his new shoes. He established his own set of rules of when he wanted the squeaks on and off. When he’s jumping and “working out” he sits down and turns those puppies on and has a wonderful squeaking time. During his imaginative play time or when grandpa’s around he chooses to keep them off. I liked that during this transition of needing control, my son has something he is in control of.

As for my newly walking daughter, we just leave her ikiki’s on because what is cuter than a tottering baby?

A tottering baby laughing at herself squeaking.

Shoe Tech

As I said before, ikiki shoes were engineered around children’s feet.

The soles are very light weight and soft, making them flexible and comfortable. The rubber bottoms protect their little feet while also allowing children to feel the ground; helping to develop balance and stability. Each sole has a different pop of color, making it easier to match the correct foot to the correct shoe.

The website provides a wonderful printable sizing guide. Included is detailed directions, an accuracy check, and scale. It was simple and quick to measure my kids’ feet and the shoes ended up being very true to size.

Kids’ Foot Sizing Chart

The actual materials making up ikiki shoes are breathable and durable. The unique high top design offers padded support for little ankles without hugging too tight. The insides are smooth making slipping on shoes a breeze, while the outsides provides extra protection for toes and heels.

My son is a wild child always looking for adventure. These shoes have held up not just through every day use but also scooter riding, playing sports, and adventuring by our local park’s creek. While reading through some ikiki reviews, I read one consumer’s fear of the shoes being too flimsy for outside. ikiki actually encouraged her to try the shoes for outside play and offered another pair if they got ruined.

The truth is, healthy kid shoes should feel light weight and flexible. ikiki has mastered just that by engineering high quality developmentally appropriate shoes for your kids’ growing feet.

EASY to put on

My favorite feature of ikiki shoes is how easy they are. These are the first shoes my son has ever independently put on!

A serious miracle!

The backs have large easy pull on loops which can actually be used. These are far from the normal wimpy loops that slip right out of your fingers.

The best part is the wide opening velcro which provides plenty of wiggle room to pop feet in. Since velcro can be adjusted, you can still make the roomy shoes tight enough for safe walking.

Appealing Characters 

ikiki didn’t just design shoes for the different needs of adolescent feet, they also created unique styles to accentuate the personality of your little ones. ikiki shoes are visually appealing with bright colors and friendly characters. Each pair doubles as a fun character friend that is as unique as your child. Their website includes bios for each character helping your little one choose his or her ikikis.

For the first time I let my son choose his own shoes. It was a much debated processes as we went through and read about each character. He eventually decided on Prince Kairu, a competitive frog working towards being the first amphibious Olympic swimmer. He loved the medal Kairu had won in his bio picture and the fact he could help him jump to victory.

For me it was a struggle to narrow it down but I finally chose Patty Potamus for my daughter, a dancing hippo ballerina that has a taste for finer things. Not to mention, we loved they were glittery and matched her favorite hippo toy.


Thanks to our ikiki shoes leaving the house this fall is going to be quick and simple. We finally have shoes that are made for developing walking feet while also appeasing our independent free spirited child.


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