Learn how to sew ballet shoes by following our easy-to-follow tutorial.
After you have mastered the basic steps, you can move on to more complicated tasks like embellishing the shoes.
You will learn about the different materials and types of elastics.
Technique shoe elastics tend to be lighter duty, and pointe shoes have a heavier duty elastic.
Nonetheless, the sewing process for pointe shoes remains the same. You will need a thread and a needle.
How to Sew Ballet Shoes – Quicker and Easier Ways To Sew
Elastics are less likely to damage pointe shoes
When sewing elastics, avoid twisting or over-tightening them.
You want the elastic to lay flat against your ankle and not pull, or burn your foot.
Elastics are more easily damaged when heated by a flame, and cotton is less flammable than nylon.
Also, cotton will not melt in a flame. It can be sewn on with a “running” stitch.
Elastics are more likely to damage pointe shoes than technique shoes.
Choose elastics that are wider and heavier-duty than technique shoes’ elastics.
Sew them near the ribbons or on the outside of the shoe. This helps keep the Achilles tendon from chafing against the elastic.
Generally, you can sew elastics at a thumb’s width from the back seam of the shoe.
If you’d like to add extra support, place a single elastic on either side of the heel or the side seam of the shoe.
Materials engineers could also experiment with fabrics and platform modifications.
One of their goals would be to address frictional rotation, which is critical to turning during the dance.
Other approaches would be to improve the flexibility of pointe shoes through more elasticity.
The latter approach could improve jumps and decrease the risk of injury.
The possibilities for pointe shoe refinement are endless. In the meantime, we can rejoice in the fact that pointe shoes are finally getting some much-needed attention.
When compared to traditional flat soles, elastics are less likely to damage pointe shoes.
Elastics are less likely to tear pointe shoes when the ballerina performs jump landings on pointe.
These shoes are designed to distribute the impact force throughout the foot and ankle complex.
Elastics in pointe shoes are less likely to tear or damage than traditional flat soles, so this is an important factor to keep in mind when choosing a pair.
They are quicker and easier to sew
While the traditional method of sewing a pair of ballet shoes is tedious and difficult, modern methods are much quicker and easier to complete.
For example, a sewing machine can quickly sew together two pieces of an upper part and a lining to form a single piece.
It can also fuse Thermolam to the back side of the upper part.
However, sewing by hand is just as effective and requires a large needle and heavy thread.
Besides the elastic, there are also several options for attaching ribbons and elastics to a pair of pointe shoes.
Some ballet dancers use ribbons, while others use elastic bands. Either method will work well, but Lizzie prefers using elastic ribbons.
Elastic ribbons provide better support and feel better on the ankles. You can also use dental floss instead of normal sewing thread.
If you don’t have dental floss at hand, you can burn the ends of the ribbon with a lighter to make them stronger.
Elastics are a crucial part of a child’s ballet shoes. Elastics can be either single or double elastic.
Single elastics are faster to sew, while double elastics provide more support and define the arch better.
Some double elastic shoes also require sewing in the elastics, so you can make them more custom-fit.
Your child’s age will determine the type of sole to use. Full sole ballet shoes have a suede sole from heel to toe.
They provide more resistance on the underside of the foot than single elastics.
When sewing the platform, a chain stitch can be used. You can insert the needle through the satin or platform material.
Then, draw the thread through the platform. Remember not to stitch too far outwards as this can result in poor traction.
Once the stitching is complete, seal the excess thread with clear nail polish. If you want to make a shoe that lasts a long time, consider purchasing a kit.
Before sewing the elastic, make sure you stretch it until it is firm but not too tight.
Then cut it at a point below the horizontal stitching on the binding.
If you do not want to criss-cross elastics, make sure to use the single 1.5cm-wide elastic instead.
This method is easier than using criss-cross elastics. It is also much quicker to sew than criss-cross elastics.
They are heavier-duty than technique shoe elastic
When sewing ballet shoes, there are two types of elastic: technique shoe elastic and regular shoe elastic.
The latter is heavier-duty, making them better for high-arched dancers.
Technique shoe elastic has four points at each end, and regular shoe elastic uses two points.
Ballet shoes with high arches may have to be stitched at two points on each side.
For the best results, use the technique of shoe elastic.
Pointe shoe elastic is generally wider and heavier-duty than technique shoe elastic.
Elastic for pointe shoes is typically angled slightly away from the seam and can be wider than technique shoe elastic.
Make sure to use the proper size for the heel. If you’re unsure of how much elastic to use, measure the heel and ankle before you sew.
This will ensure that the shoe is level and supports the foot.
Criss-cross elastics help those with high arches, narrow feet, or high arches.
While single elastics are quicker to sew on ballet shoes, they don’t provide as much support as criss-cross elastics.
Criss-cross elastics provide extra support and define the arch. Although criss-cross elastics are more complicated to sew, they’re better for high-arched dancers.
Before stitching a ballet shoe, stretch the elastic so that it is firm and over the foot.
Be careful not to pull it inside or outside of the shoe. Make sure to cut the elastic below the binding’s horizontal stitching lines.
You’ll need the extra elastic in the back of the shoe to stretch it. If you have a large elastic, you may want to use technique shoe elastic instead.
Pointe shoe ribbons are made from nylon or polyester satin. They are typically seven to one inch wide and 22 inches long.
Some dancers sing the ends to prevent unraveling. Fold the heel down until it meets the sock liner.
Mark the inside shoe crease with the ribbon. The ribbon should overlap the shoe one inch.
If your pointe shoe elastic is too long, you can cut it into two equal pieces.