These were bought for our 5 year old daughter who has quite narrow feet but wants to, and can, sort herself out generally.
Merrell products are always built like the proverbial outhouse and last. These are no different. They are solidly constructed, anotomically well designed and a super colour (for a 5 year old girl!).
There are however a few things that parents may need to consider when buying.
No child wears out shoes at this age. This, for me at least, suggests an opportunity to construct them in a slightly less 'belt and braces' fashion.
Certainly if they were made from slightly softer leather they would be far more forgiving on soft young feet. The velcro used would suspend me from a bridge! This translates into our daughter having real trouble adjusting them to that position where they are truly comfortable - a must for all shoes like these.
For me, the typical Merrell longevity inbuilt into theese shoes backfires a little with the use of 'adult' materials - they are simply a lttle too unforgiving.
IF she manages to persevere with them for long enough for them to soften up, they will become the typical 'awesome' Merrells my wife and I swear by for both their comfort and quality. If not, then they will be sold on and, one day, someone will finally get a fantastic pair of girls shoes.