Pointe shoes look beautiful on the feet and can help you take your dancing to the next level. Whether you are just starting out or a more experienced dancer, you need to know how to sew ribbons on pointe shoes.
This blog will look at all the different stuff that you need while sewing ribbons on pointe shoes and we will also guide you on how to sew ribbons on pointe shoes.
Table of Contents
What Are Pointe Shoes?
Ballet dancers wear pointe shoes, which are unique dancing shoes that allow them to dance on the tips of their toes. During a routine, ballerinas use ribbons and elastics to keep their pointe shoes firmly connected to their feet. Because most new pointe shoes do not come with ribbons or elastics, dancers must sew these pieces on to modify the fit and keep their shoes secure while dancing.
What stuff Do You need to Sew Pointe Shoes?
Pointe Shoes: Make sure your ballet shoes are well-fitted (preferably at a professional shoe fitting)—you won’t be able to return them if you sew ribbons or elastics onto them.
Ribbons: Pointe shoe ribbons are a specific sort of ribbon that is usually one inch wide and made of polyester or nylon. They usually come as a single 88-inch-long length of ribbon that you cut to size for your shoes.
Elastics: Pointe shoe elastics are unique elastics that are supple but not as chafing as other elastics. They are normally a half-inch wide.
Sewing Thread: To blend in, choose a sewing thread that matches the color of your pointe shoes. In a pinch, some dancers use dental floss; if you use dental floss, make sure it’s unwaxed and odorless.
Needle: For stitching pointe shoes, use any sewing needle that is sharp enough to pierce the lining of your shoes and has a thin eye that won’t create large holes in the lining.
Scissors: Always have a pair of scissors on hand to trim sewing thread and elastic.
Sewing Pins (Optional): Pins can be used to keep ribbons and elastics in place when sewing.
Match (Optional): Some dancers use matches to keep their ribbons from fraying at the clipped ends.
Pencil: A pencil (Optional) can be useful for noting where you want to sew your ribbons or cut your elastics.
How to Sew Ribbons on Pointe Shoes
Here’s how to sew ribbons onto your pointe shoes, whether it’s your first pair or your fifth
Make your Ribbons by Cutting Them
The majority of pointe shoe ribbons are sold as a single long piece, usually 88 inches in length. Cut the ribbon in half and then in half again to prepare it for your pointe shoes. Pointe shoe ribbons are usually twenty-two inches long, but you can make them longer or shorter to suit your needs.
Fold your Pointe Shoe’s Heel in Half
The heel of the shoe should be folded flat against the shoe’s bottom. This fold will produce a diagonal line along each side of the shoe, which you’ll sew in place with your ribbons. Add a pencil mark on this line, to make it easy to lay your ribbons.
Ribbons Should be Pinned in Place
Place your first ribbon on one of the lines you formed when you folded the heel of your shoe and pin it to the side of the shoe using a sewing pin. Replace the ribbon on the opposite side and repeat the process.
Related: How to Walk Without Creasing Shoe
Needle Should be Threaded
From your spool, cut a long piece of sewing thread (around the length of your arm). Avoid binding the thread to the needle by slipping one end of the thread through the needle’s eye and letting it dangle a few inches from the eye. Tie a knot or two on the opposite end of the thread to keep it from slipping through your shoe.
Stitch Down one of the Ribbon’s Long Sides
Starting at the bottom edge and working your way up to the shoe’s binding edge, make stitches down one of the long sides of the ribbon. Working from the inside of the shoe. Pierce a little portion of the lining with the needle and then back through. Pry a little portion of the lining through the bottom of the ribbon with your needle and pull the thread until it’s taut. To make stitches, repeat the technique along with the ribbon.
Stitch Around the Binding
Fold the ribbon flush against the binding edge of your pointe shoes after you’ve reached it for a clean look. Make your stitches along the binding’s top edge. If you sew through the drawstring, you won’t be able to pull it tight when you need to.
Related: What Color Shoes With Grey Pants?
Stitch the Rest of the Ribbon in Place
Continue your threads down the long remaining edge and then along the short folded final edge once you’ve stitched the ribbon to the binding.
Finish by Tying off Your Last Stitch
Thread your needle through a loop of stitching, tie a knot in the thread, and snip it close to the knot to avoid a loose thread when you’ve finished stitching.
Repeat with the Second Ribbon
Repeat with the other ribbon, resulting in a shoe with one ribbon on each side.
Repeat With the Opposite Shoe
Replace your second pointe shoe and repeat the process.
Glue the Cut Ends Together (Optional)
Ribbons that have been cut may fray, so secure the back edges to keep them from fraying. To do so, light a match and pass the end of the ribbon into the flame for a few seconds to melt the threads together and secure it.
Sewing ribbons on pointe shoes can be a challenge, but with a little bit of practice, it’s not as daunting as it may seem. Our goal is to make your ribbon sewing experience as simple and easy as possible, so we’ve created a step-by-step guide to help you sew ribbons on pointe shoes.
Whether you’re a beginner or just looking for a refresher, we hope you found this guide useful! If you have any questions, you can ask us about them anytime.