We bought our ds a pair of Elafenten sandals. They are very nice suede and seem to be very comfortable on his feet. I think they were around $40, maybe a little more. We got his at Nordstrom's, but Hanna Anderson has them too. He wore them yesterday for the first time and seemed very comfy in them.
Just a note of caution, I think it's nice to make sure you pick a style that protects their toes. Younger children tend to scrape their toes if the toe area isn't protected by the leather of the sandal.
tara - my dd has been wearing Soft Star Shoes since she was born and I've already gotten a pair for ds - I love their shoes!! I never really thought about geting her their sandals, I'm getting ds a pair, I'm going to look into it. I was hoping for a sturdier sole for her, but we'll see!
I agree about the toes - I like fisherman-style sandals best. Elefanten changed theirs and I don't like the way they look anymore! Honestly, I find that the plain old Stride Rite ones are great - comfy, secure, and they hold up all summer long. Here's a cute one - they have one like this in plain white, too:
I saw those Stride Rites in the store and I really like them except for he heel, why do they put a high heel on kids shoes? It's kinda like a platform, about a 7/8" heel. I'm used to Soft Star shoes I guess - completely flat. I do have Stride Rite mary janes for her and I like them, not too stiff. It's been really hard to find just the right pair.
I'm going to keep looking and following your leads, mamas! Thanks!