Review: Vincent Shoes for Kids

The worst thing you can do as a parent is give your child stylish shoes. You don’t need the headaches. You don’t need the arguments about not wearing shoes in the house even though they are cool. You don’t need a tantrum because you are drawn to the endearingly cute red pair with hearts, but she likes the purple pair because purple is her favorite color. And you certainly don’t need for your wife coming home to find the two of you in separate corners pouting.

Photo of red Mary Jane-style shoes with red hearts. The shoe is called Love, by Vincent Shoes. The photo caption reads: Tap your heels together three times and repeat, 'There's no place like home.'“But I like purple!” Oh, give me a break. Toddlers don’t have the cognitive ability to be style conscious. You’re going to wear the red shoes. “WHAAAA!”

Oh, OK, that didn’t really happen, but there is a nugget of truth in every story. The whole family loves our Vincent shoes.

Our pair of red Mary-Jane Love shoes with hearts are excruciatingly cute. My daughter adores her purple leather Linus shoes more (photos below), I think partially because she enjoys using its larger Velcro fastener. At 2.5-years-old she can put on and take off these shoes without incident. They are slightly large (but still quite wearable) because dumb ol’ dad didn’t use Vincent’s easy shoe fitter guide.

These shoes are solidly crafted. I want seven more kids to exploit their full hand-me-down value. It would be awkward to donate them in a year and then have my daughter walk up to a strange kid every now and then for the next five or ten years and say, “Excuse me, but you’re wearing my shoes.”

Vincent Shoes are designed by two Swedes who have worked in various areas of the fashion world. You can read about the real Vincent behind the company’s name at the distributor’s web site.

I’m more interested in the fellow behind, the exclusive U.S. distributor for the shoes. You won’t find much online about him, Christer Berg, because, after all, he’s not the story. But he’s the guy who e-mailed to see whether I’d accept a sample for review (I do routinely reject product samples I can’t recommend) and I asked him about his business.

Christer launched Vincent in the U.S. last September. He is also Swedish, but has lived here for more than 10 years. In 2002, he and his wife launched Scandinavian Child, and began importing a variety of children’s goods such as Svan high chairs and bouncers, Cariboo bassinets and changing tables and Monarch nursery chairs.

I asked him via e-mail, why sell Vincent? He replied, “When we heard about the Vincent brand, met the people and learned about their design philosophy, we instantly liked the brand and felt it could fill an important void in the U.S. – fun, fashionable, functional and affordable quality kids’ shoes.”

Vincent is certainly affordable in comparison to other high quality shoes. I was aghast to realize some competing brands exceed $100 a pair, and don’t even compare in level of design.

An excellent piece of news is that Vincent Shoes has a winter clearance sale for the next few weeks, with some styles 50 percent off and has a standing offer of free shipping on orders of $75 or more. The purple Linus shoes shown below are 25 percent off. Vincent has some wickedly cool winter boots I’d jump at if I lived in snow instead of a soggy redwood forest.

Here’s a tip good for whatever shoes or clothes you buy. When a seasonal sale begins, plot your child’s growth and buy for the coming year. I stocked up on summer clothes in autumn.

Ridiculously large close-up photos are displayed below.

Four close-up photos of the red Love Mary Jane-style shoes by Vincent Shoes.

Four close-up photos of purple Linus shoes by Vincent Shoes.


10 Responses to “Review: Vincent Shoes for Kids”

  1. STL Mom says:

    I found Vincent shoes when my 3-year-old son wanted red shoes. There were no red shoes for boys to be found at local stores so off to the internet I went. My son picked the Stan shoes from the website, and LOVES them. They are adorable and sturdy. They are also very easy to put on. My son used to push the tongue down into his sneakers when he put them on. With the Stan shoe, the tongue goes on the outside and has velcro on both sides to fasten it down. I don’t know if I am explaining this clearly, but they are the best shoes ever. If I figure out how to measure my kids’ feet, we may never go back to Stride Rite!

    January 11th, 2007 at 2:44 pm

  2. AJ says:

    Argh. You *can* measure your kids’ feet. I forgot to add a link to Vincent’s shoe fitter guide. It’s there now. Follow the directions on the web site to properly print the sizing sheet, then have your kid stand on the sheet.

    January 11th, 2007 at 2:56 pm

  3. STL Mom says:

    Thanks! I don’t know why I think of fitting shoes as some sort of esoteric skill. Although I have heard that the clerks in the Nordstrom’s children’s shoes department go to a 4-day training to learn how to fit children’s shoes. FOUR days?

    January 14th, 2007 at 12:08 pm

  4. Doug says:

    I agree, these shoes are fantastic ! My girls are picky, and they loved the ones we ordered. Go Swedes!

    January 18th, 2007 at 7:06 pm

  5. thordora says:

    I LOVE those shoes, but there is NO WAY my husband would let me spend that one shoes for the girls. Which sucks, because they look incredible.

    January 23rd, 2007 at 10:14 am

  6. Nbkvqnf says: x

    June 1st, 2007 at 5:44 am

  7. j.d. says:

    If you’re hip to these feisty shoes, you’ll probably be hip to these feisty hats: has the most adorable (and well-made) hats around if you want something original. Puppy Love’s my son’s favorite…

    July 9th, 2007 at 7:08 pm

  8. msap says:

    These are the best shoes! I bought the Chrissy in wht/silver and they have lasted an entire year of pre-school – my daughter wore them every day. They go with every outfit, wipe clean with a wippy, and the tread is a good as new. I would buy them again in a heartbeat.

    July 7th, 2008 at 10:22 am

  9. Vivian says:

    I’ve bought several pairs of Vincent shoes for my son, mostly during their sales. I bought larger sizes I knew he’d eventually need. One pair which I bought in the spring but he started wearing in Sept started scuffing very badly within the first couple of weeks of wear, very thin suede that was used rubbed off in several spots on his toe bed. And he’s in Pre-K and they don’t run around outside very much. They were shoes that were described as being for the very active child. I emailed customer service and was told that because I had bought the shoes so far in advance, even though he had only started wearing them, there was nothing they could do. There was absolutely NO RESPONSE to my question of why a pair of shoes touted for active kids was wearing down after only a few weeks. I could understand if they were dress shoes, but these looked like rugged boots.

    Because the shoe styles are so cute, I may continue to purchase Vincent shoes, but only if they are dressier shoes he won’t be wearing often.

    December 15th, 2008 at 10:09 am

  10. Codi says:

    Vincent shoes (at least the ones I bought) are the sturdiest shoes I have ever purchased! I LOVE them! My son is OVERLY active and they still look GREAT! No scuffs, nothing!

    January 4th, 2010 at 10:55 am