Introduction: Sew Elastics and Ribbons on Pointe Shoes
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- pointe shoes
- elastic bands
Whatever kind of stockings and pads you use
cotton yarn (optional)
- suede padding (optional)
These are my pointe shoes, old ones, the actual ones and the new ones. Please, note that I'm not a professional dancer, I just dance and I like to dance. This is how I prepare my pointe shoes, so this way "for me, for my feet this way is good".
For this guide I've used a pair of Sansha Premiere, that are the best for my feet.
Prepare your feet. You are going to sew everything as you are going to use when dancing, so you feet should be ready. Clip your nails, put on your stockings and pads and everything you need.
Make a tendu. The point where your feet arch is higher is where you'll sew the ribbons.
Put on your shoe: generally new pointe shoes are not left or right, so decide which will be your left shoe and which will be you right shoe.
I know that some dancers switch them so they will not be worn out only on the side most used, but I prefere to use them only on one foot because the shoe takes the shape on my foot and this makes the pointe work less painful. Mark them as you prefer: I write an "S" on the sole of my left shoe (generally I go over the S in Sansha mark) or in the inner sole. The reason of the "S" is that in Italian "left" is "sinistra".
Make the tendu again. Pull the fabric down and mark the point where your arch is higher, inner and outer.
Sew firmly the ribbons: they'll keep your shoes on, so make little and secure stiches. Try not to sew the outer fabric (the pink one), but only the white fabric (that's cotton, it's sturdy).
Sew the ribbon on the other side. I generally take away all the labels and everything I don't need.
Generally Sansha shoes come with a pre-sew elastic band. If you like it, just measureit and sew the non-sewn end. I prefer to use another type of band.
Measure the elastic around your ankle. It should be firmly, but it shouldn't strangle your foot.
Cut the elastic band and sew it on the back of the shoe. You can also put a little elastic band, 4 cm long, 0,5 cm tall, on the heal. You'll thread the ribbons in this loop when you put on the shoe.
Put on your shoe and check if everything is okay.
Tie the ribbons. As you surely know, bows are not reccomended for pointe shoes. Make a double knot.
Hide the knot under the ribbon.
You can also add an embroid crown to the pointe. I generally do this after I had worn the pointe shoes for a while. With thick yarn, make X stitches all around.
You can also glue a specific piece of suede lather on the pointe. On this pair I glued the lather and added the embroid.
Your pointe shoes are ready for dancing. Be sure to check with your teacher if you are ready for pointe work and the right size (it should be a bit bigger than your normal shoes).