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Is Suri Cruise too young to wear high heels?

Oct. 20, 2009 at 9:33 AM ET

From TODAY Style Editor Bobbie Thomas As a self-proclaimed shoe addict, I can easily recall my very first pair of heels. I was probably 6 years old, and shocked my mother with my request to be a witch for Halloween. As she was a fan of Hello Kitty, Jem and all things pretty in pink, this would have been the last idea on her list. But when I spied those shiny black plastic pumps peeking out from the bottom of a clear costume bag, I was mesmerized. I could have cared less about candy. Instead, I spent the entire spooky evening walking around the house, in love with the idea of reaching new heights. This memory flooded back when I saw photos of the endearing little fashion plate that is Suri Cruise. TomKat’s daughter may only be 3, but grown women such as myself already covet her closet. While the world-famous toddler made headlines with her one-of-a-kind pair of custom Roger Vivier flats, she is now stepping into the spotlight a few inches taller. She’s growing before our eyes, but it’s the glittering princess pumps she’s been stepping out in around town (on more than one occasion) that are causing a stir, and raising concerns over whether the footwear choice is innocent or inappropriate. Parents to medical experts are divided over whether a child in high heels is a fun example of dress-up − or simply encourages a harmful habit, with potentially dangerous long-term health effects on posture and development. Are people are overreacting to a little girl's fashion whim? Or is this, like tweens wearing makeup or carrying cell phones (and, in Suri's case, a Starbucks cup), just another question of how young is too young to act so grown-up? Related: Are high heels for tots cute or creepy?

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