Tip-Top Trainers for Tiny Travelers

Whether they swear by Converse, stick to Superga, or wear exclusively Vans, sneaker enthusiasts are all the same at heart. There’s always something to be said for tradition, but check out these picks from sneaker brands you may not have heard of, and you might just find yourself switching your loyalty. Hailing from the USA, Scotland, Spain, Italy, China, Sweden, and Brazil, these brands range from luxe to practical, funky to classic, and familiar to entirely new. So here’s a trip around the globe to both satisfy the wanderlust of the young traveler in your life, as well as getting them in gear for back-to-school.

Sao Paolo, Brazil

From the stylish French/Brazilian brand Veja, these high-tops are made for environmentally conscious fashion plates. With electric yellow accents and bright white soles, the high voltage laces can withstand the wear-and-tear of your hyped-up tot, whether he’s tearing up the dance floor or the playground. Clean cut color blocking makes these babies presentable for almost any occasion, and even more presentable are Veja’s pledges to protect the environment and use fair labor. Clean lines from a squeaky clean source? That’s kickin’. $141. 50, littlefashiongallery.com


Shanghai, China

These Feiyue Velcro sneakers are almost too good to be true. With roots that cross the globe in bothChinaandFrance, Feiyue’s designs are pure design heaven, giving off both a vintage and distinctly international vibe. The Delta Scratch sneakers in red and white are perfect for little jet-setters, sporting arrows that point towards adventure. $60, mylittlesquare.com




Los Angeles, USA

All-natural and totally rad, Keep’s Ramos Desert Snake Eye sneakers are made for the modern hippie. The sackcloth body and ikat accents remind us of a sunny California day––strolling on the beach or smooth sailing on a skateboard. Laid-back and comfortable, these “vegan sneakers” are a no-brainer for any little one who’s a Cali kid at heart. $35, keepcompany.com


Edinburgh, Scotland

A familiar label presents an unexpected shape with the Hunter Milbank Trainers –the answer to every mom’s prayers. Waterproof like a wellie, but with all the classic style of your favorite kicks, these outdoorsy wonders will take your tots through their muddiest adventures. The little rubber sneaks are army style with a cute high-top body, hunter green color, and hardware that’s as appealing to the eye as it is practical. $74, usa.alexandalexa.com



Villena, Spain

MAÁ is a high-end Spanish brand that handcrafts all of its tiny creations—worth the splurge for their top-tier quality. The Perforated High Top Trainers are simply striking in any color, but silver adds a punch of attitude that emphasizes an awesome contrast between luxe and sporty. Reminiscent of a boxer’s lace-up shoes, these sneakers are for girls who love to stand out and make an entrance (boxing gloves not included). $153.64, childrensalon.com


Stockholm, Sweden

The brain behind Mini Rodini, Cassandra Rhodin, is a Swedish illustrator who draws inspiration from her family history in the circus. Indeed, the whimsical influence is visible here in her White Stripe Sneaker. With their bold lines and colors, this playful pair is fit for the class clown, the petit strong man, or the brash ringmaster-in-training. $90, minirodini.com



Venice, Italy

Golden Goose’s Francy Sneakers are a distressed, fun alternative to clean-cut tennis shoes. Weathered canvas and leather accents make this pair perfect for little punks who opt for edgier styles. À la the 90s, we’re betting on these kicks’ devil-may-care attitude to take your kid through summer and into the back-to-school wardrobe with effortless cool. Let the kids be kids, and give up on trying to keep their white sneakers white. $187.86, smallable.com