Small Size Womens Shoes
February 24, 2015 6:33 PM   Subscribe

Does anyone have recommendations for small-size (around size 4, depending on shoe) women's shoes, especially in the Los Angeles area? My wife moved here recently from Japan, where her shoe size is much less uncommon and so it wasn't much of an issue. But in LA, it seems very difficult to find any stores that stock this size. For something like sneakers, children's sizes are probably an option, but for dress shoes / heels I don't think that will work.

Even online it's a challenge to find much --- going from "size 5" to "size 4" on Zappos cuts the search results by over 10x (and a decent percentage of those are from very high-end/expensive brands --- we're really looking for $200 or less).

Right now the options appear to be to either pick something from the small online selection or wait until next time we are in Japan, but if there are stores that either specifically cater to this niche or that are more friendly to it, that would be awesome.
posted by thefoxgod to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (15 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Nordstrom's carries size 4.
posted by cecic at 6:40 PM on February 24, 2015 [1 favorite]

There are actually a fair number of manufacturers that make heels for girls -- Stuart Weitzman and Kenneth Cole among them. And they tend to be cheaper than women's shoes, sometimes for very similar styles.
posted by katemonster at 6:42 PM on February 24, 2015 [2 favorites]

Since you're in Los Angeles, have you checked shoe stores in Little Tokyo or Koreatown? They may carry smaller sizes due to their customer base.
posted by erst at 6:46 PM on February 24, 2015 [1 favorite]

Someone online suggested that in the LA area, the Mexican-run shoe stores and zapaterias have cheap (probably not real leather) but sturdy options in a ton of sizes.

Marmi has stores in Marina del Rey and Newport Beach; they carry size 4 and up.

Cinderella of Boston is actually located in California, though it looks like they're online only. Still, they're well under $100.
posted by St. Hubbins at 6:48 PM on February 24, 2015

Has she checked out the options at Crewcuts, the for-kids part of J. Crew?

...does she have a saved search set up to e-mail her when new listings for her size are posted on eBay? Would she be interested in vintage, which is often in smaller sizes; Etsy, perhaps?
posted by kmennie at 6:55 PM on February 24, 2015 [2 favorites]

Don't write off kids' shoes until you've looked at them. There are some very cute adult styles available in the kids sections. (In fact, the reverse is a problem---it's hard to find styles that are kid-appropriate; all the size 2s and 3s and 4s and 5s in the kids section ( = 4, 5, 6, ??? in women's---I know that size 5 womens is usually about size 3 kids) are way more adult than I think my daughter should be wearing. 9 year olds don't need heels for everyday shoes.)

(I don't wear 'grownup' shoes much, but my day-to-day shoes and hiking boots are both from the kids department.)

As a random test, on Zappos, I found a bunch of grownup-looking shoes in the kids department. (YMMV)

Black Patent heels

possibly too girly silver gladiator heels

Cute black patent peep-toe heels

Fancy silver heels

Possibly cute black boots

Dressy bronze tall boots
posted by leahwrenn at 7:17 PM on February 24, 2015

Amazon seems promising.

Here's a heel, a kitten heel, Jessica Simpson pump, oxfords....

One thing with in-store is that they may not have that size in stock, but it may be in stock online. Some places you can order online and return in-store which can be easier for refunds. I'd try kids' sizes still though because you'd be surprised at the mature styles for kids' shoes now.
posted by Crystalinne at 7:17 PM on February 24, 2015

Yes, as a size 5, I buy children's sizes at Crewcuts, as mentioned, and in Zara's children's section. They don't have heels, but they sometimes have very grown-up, sophisticated flats that are just less costly versions of their adult flats.
posted by Yoko Ono's Advice Column at 7:23 PM on February 24, 2015

Nordstrom Rack also periodically has small size special events.
posted by wintersweet at 7:49 PM on February 24, 2015

I take kids size shoes and I am 35 years old. I am a 1 1/2 american, 30 european. Kenneth Cole makes great, elegant kids shoes. I also have a pair of tods, uggs, and marc jacobs flats I think. Nordstrom has a great selection. If there is a TJX company out there like Marshalls or TJMaxx they have sizes that fit. I have found italian designers at the larger stride rites that are great.
posted by Jewel98 at 8:25 PM on February 24, 2015

Nordstrom, Nordstrom, Nordstrom. They are the go-to place for us tiny-footed humans, and you are very lucky to be in a city with lots of them sprinkled about. Great selection with a wide variety of styles, and good brand options.
posted by thegreatfleecircus at 7:14 AM on February 25, 2015

She might also try coming down to Gardena and Torrance, there is a large Japanese population in those towns with vendors that cater to the population. There are Marukai and Daiso stores in both cities, while they don't carry shoes, they do carry directories of local Japanese-catering businesses.
posted by vignettist at 11:55 AM on February 25, 2015

Thank you everyone! A lot to look at :)
posted by thefoxgod at 2:01 PM on February 25, 2015

Oh, and it looks like Cinderella of Boston does actually have a retail location (in OC, but close enough):
posted by thefoxgod at 3:41 PM on February 25, 2015

Naturalizer sells most of their shoes online in a size 4, and the price point is around $100 at full price. I also second Nordstrom. As a fashion-conscious size 5, I find the style of most kids' shoes unacceptably clunky, but flat sandals can work (e.g. Sam Edelman makes a children's version of their women's t-strap flat sandal and it looks the same).
posted by serelliya at 5:59 PM on February 28, 2015

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