Lads and Lasses We Love – Jane Smith

February 11th 2019, 8:40am

Tell us a bit about yourself and what you do 
My name is Jane, I’m a married Mam of three and I own Soled 4 Kids, a specialist children’s shoe fitting shop in Hexham.

Tell us about your business
I fell into this business by accident after the birth of my youngest daughter. She has one foot wider than the other which is the result of having a tumour removed at six months old. I made it my mission to find shoes that would accommodate her unusual needs and discovered the ‘Fit left Fit Right’ system from Hush Puppies. The rest, as they say, is history. Here we are 10 years later looking after your children’s feet with not only Hush Puppies but five other carefully-sourced brands. 

As members of the Children’s Foot Health Register we understand that ill-fitting shoes are the one item of clothing that can seriously damage your health long term. We guarantee to always measure and fit both feet, offer a selection of appropriate footwear in various sizes and fittings, provide guidance about each child’s foot health and footwear and understand the importance of shoe fitting in relation to a child’s development. We always have qualified, trained staff in attendance. 

What are the most sparkly bits of what you do?
I understand how it feels to trawl the high street with your little angel who just wants some pretty shoes like all her friends. That awful feeling when nothing fits right or she has to make do with the only ugly style that does.

At Soled 4 Kids we make it our mission to ensure all children leave with a pair of shoes they love and that parents are confident they are good for the future health and well being of their child. 

What are the biggest challenges you face running your business?
Trying to predict what styles are going to be popular a year in advance often proves a tough ask, but over the years I am getting to know my customers and their styles and needs. So my crystal ball skills are improving! 

What have been your biggest achievements and how have you celebrated them
My biggest achievement of course was finding a brand that suited my daughter’s unusual needs. I celebrated by buying her a pair of every style in the range that season.

What are your goals – for yourself and your business?
I love my little shop in Hexham, but it’s a bit of a tight squeeze on busy days so I’d love to move to somewhere bigger.

What is your favourite place in the North East and why?
Consett may be wet, windy and frankly miserable at times but it’s where my nearest and dearest live and you can’t get better than that. 

Who puts a Sparkle in your eye?!
My children, even though two of them are now adults. They will always be my babies!

A final Sparkly thought – what tips would you give to busy, hard-working entrepreneurs?
Never give up, nothing happens overnight and even less happens without hard work.

You can connect with Jane on Facebook


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