Expert free fitting service at Brantano made our Back To School shoe shopping a breeze!

It's that time of year again. It's almost time to go back to school. It's the time when you see haggard-looking parents, whey-faced at the prospect of finding school shoes which A. fit B. meet with child's approval and C. don't cost the same as a fortnight in the Bahamas.

back to school shoe fitting at Brantano

You can split shoe shopping parents into two camps. Those who blithely hurl pairs of supermarket shoes into the trolley along with yoghurt, congratulate themselves on saving money and avoiding the shoe shop and who hope the shoes last longer than the yoghurt. And that their children's feet don't blister on the first day of wearing the shoes or are permanently damaged by shoes which haven't been properly fitted.

Then there are those who brave the seasonal shoe shop rush, hope that one of the styles available fits and isn't lost among 15 identical pairs at school. They also hope they aren't committing themselves to a month of eating bread and jam so they can afford the shoes, trainers, plimsolls etc.

I have found the answer fellow parents! In the past I have flitted between both options. Cheap or fitted. The decision largely resting on how healthy the bank balance looks at the time shoes are required.

madmumof7 shoe fitting sesiĆ³n in Brantano

Last week I took my three youngest children along to Brantano in Aylesbury where with the support of a helpful, knowledgeable and surprisingly calm expert shoe fitter I managed to find footwear with the minimum of fuss.

The great thing about Brantano is that the store has a selection of well known branded shoes like Hush Puppies, Clarks, Start Rite, Adidas, Nike, Skechers.... the list goes on. It also stocks lesser known brands which means there are styles to suit all tastes and all budgets.

The fitting was as fuss free as I have ever encountered. Our lovely fitter chose from a range of shoe fitting tools and measured all three children quickly and efficiently. She filled in size cards and explained that they all had odd widths - one foot E and the other F.

Shoe size certificate from Brantano

Luckily they stock brands which offer solutions for this situation. She pointed out Hush Puppies shoes which give the option of different sized inserts for a perfect fit. In fact the very first pair or shoes Grumpy tried were indeed a perfect fit and looked fabulous.

But there's a reason we call him Grumpy and he had already caught sight of another pair of shoes our fitter had picked up for him to try and insisted he tried those on. Our fitter told us they didn't really fit, even with liners but he started to head into tantrum mode so she went off to find more shoes.

Shoe fitting free at Brantano #backtoschool

Three more pairs of shoes later and he finally agreed with us that the first pair were the best fit and most comfortable. He didn't want to take them off!

My 11 -year-old wanted trainers and was blown away with the selection available as well as football boots for both astro-turf and grass. With the help of our ever-patient fitter we found a pair of trainers.

He tried on the size the fitter had measured him at but as you know shoe sizes can vary by brand and size and this pair were huge on him! The fitter suggested we try them in a size smaller and thankfully after a thorough check our fitter assured us there was room for growth and they were a good fit despite the number on the box.

My daughter didn't need shoes but enjoyed the fitting experience anyway and found lots of shoes she liked. I know where to take her when she does outgrow her current shoes!

The whole experience was very relaxed and I never felt rushed even when Grumpy was taking his time choosing his shoes. The children loved the certificates and stickers they were given for getting fitted and loved the easy display layout which is done in sizes. You can even pick up school bags, shoe labels and other accessories while you are there.

stickers after shoe fitting at Brantano, Aylesbury

You can order shoes online from Brantano too but I would definitely recommend the fitting service if there's a branch near you. I feel very happy knowing that I had expert help choosing shoes which didn't break the bank!

Disclaimer: I received a Brantano voucher for the purpose of this review. Views and opinions remain honest and my own.