Characters have never been cooler, especially in the kids’ shoe business.
From classic books to blockbuster movies, the entertainment world’s most famous faces continue to front some of footwear’s buzziest collaborations. Here are a few standouts.
Hunter x Peppa Pig
Two British favorites united to “celebrate the joy of muddy puddles” with rainboots and umbrellas featuring the precocious Peppa and her brother, George. The partnership, launched in July, coincided with the release of a two-episode TV special chronicling the porcine siblings’ first visit to a music festival (after all, festivals are a regular stomping ground for Hunter).
Clarks x Lion King
In celebration of the live-action remake of the Disney animated classic, Clarks took its Roamer toddler shoe for a walk on the wild side. Simple details such as an earthy yellow suede upper and a lion-silhouette print give the rugged style a cool, safari-inspired vibe.
Teva x The Very Hungry Caterpillar
The outdoor brand brought to life Eric Carle’s beloved book — a bedtime favorite for millions of kids since its debut 50 years ago — on an adorable capsule of shoes. The adventure-ready styles included a sandal and an easy-on moc, decorated with Carle’s signature bold colors and collage-style illustrations.
Vans x Harry Potter
Vans cast a spell over the internet with the surprise unveiling in June of a Harry Potter collaboration for kids and adults. In addition to sneakers honoring the four Hogwarts houses, there are must-have styles inspired by the Marauder’s Map, the Golden Snitch and other wizardly themes.
Native x Sanrio
After 45 years, Hello Kitty is still as fashionable as ever. She also remains a star for countless collaborations — most recently a capsule of sandals and slip-on shoes from Native. Her Sanrio sidekicks, Badtz-Maru, Keroppi and My Melody, also make a cameo.
Freshly Picked x Star Wars
For its latest Disney baby collaboration, unveiled last month, Freshly Picked takes its fans to a galaxy far, far away with a 34-style “Star Wars” collection. The Utah brand brings its wonderfully whimsical approach to iconic characters such as Princess Leia, Yoda and R2-D2.
Nike x SpongeBob SquarePants
Serving up some major ’90s nostalgia, Nike put a SpongeBob spin on its popular Kyrie 5 basketball kicks. Unveiled in August — and quickly snapped up — the limited-edition collab included two kids’ styles, one a perfectly imagined take on the lovable sea sponge himself and the other inspired by his best pal, Patrick.
Adidas x Toy Story 4
After a nearly 10-year wait, Sheriff Woody, Buzz Lightyear and the rest of the “Toy Story” gang returned to the big screen for a brand new adventure. Several footwear labels celebrated the occasion with special collections, among them Adidas, which took a subtler, more abstract approach with colors and details inspired by the toys.
Toms x Sesame Street
Joining a yearlong celebration to mark the 50th anniversary of the groundbreaking children’s TV series, Toms put a unique twist on the street’s quirky Muppet residents. Its lighthearted take even included fun tactile elements such as faux feathers for Big Bird and fuzzy eyebrows for Bert.
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