My search for lightweight kids bikes in gender neutral colors ended when I met Jeff & David of Cleary Bikes. Their Starfish is a balance bike, the Gecko has 12″ wheels, the Hedgehog has 16″ and the Owl 20″. All have front and rear hand brakes scaled to fit smaller hands. And are so much lighter than anything else we could find. The 20″ Owl is about 8 pounds lighter than a comparable bike. The recent Bicycle Times magazine (issue 31 Oct 2014) had a good review of the Cleary Owl.
Please bring your favorite child to sample these new models; we’d love feedback from a small person.