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Advice please on pointe fitting in the Midlands for mature student


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I came across this forum as I was obsessively googling advice on pointe shoe fitting - my first at the age of 40!!!! Lifelong dream, am very excited but confused too! Teacher suggested Stardust in Lichfield but has said to go where I wish; have also come across Charades in Wolvs. But when I rang Step by Step school they advised Edward at Ladanse in Worcester who I have read about on here; Rutleigh/Norris were adamant about Lapointe in Evesham and another Edward...haven't found them on net so am wondering if they are the same place??


I may be being silly but Edward at Ladanse sounds very serious so may think I am silly to be doing it at my age?? 


Is there a huge price difference between Ladanse/Lapointe and the others? Stardust look very nice and completely professional from their webpage.


I am in Mid Wales so it needs to be around the Midlands area.


I think I have too much choice now so would just like some advice please/reassurance! :-)


Oh - and also - how many hours should I spend wearing them in before my first pointe class?


Thanks very much in advance.

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Edward is lovely my dd was taught by him at Harlequin Stage School several years ago.  He does know his stuff but yes is passionate about dance - but hopefully will be open and helpful to all his customers.  I don' t know what pointe shoes they stock at La Dance though helpfully he will give you lots of good advice!

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Edward at Ladanse in Worcester is very good . I know he stocks Bloch as we bought some from him but cannot remember what else. There is no pointe shoe fitter in Evesham.  In Cheltenham, the lady at The Dance Locker would be very helpful I am sure or the very experienced fitter at Showcase, also in Cheltenham.  Both Cheltenham stores stock Bloch and one other make.  I suppose to some extent it depends which route into the Midlands you take.  Personally I have high hopes for the new shop opening in Birmingham in January.  Anyway, hope you enjoy the experience.

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Edward also fitted my two. He will not worry about how old you are, he is a good fitter. I would suggest calling to check when is best to go in and what makes he has in at the moment. There is no parking very near the shop, it is n a little shopping area called the Hopmarket. Sometimes he could straight away and other times it could take over an hour and he spends whatever time he needs to. Give him a call!

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Thankyou all sooo much - for advice and encouragement! This forum is great and you are all so welcoming :-). I've been having a read of other subjects too, particularly the one about returning to ballet...I try not to have regrets but thought if I could go en pointe even just once in my life!


First class is on January 7th so waiting for the shop in Birmingham will be cutting it a bit fine I think. I don't mind travelling, wherever we go we can make a day out of it.


My teacher has said she wants the shoes ready for the first class but I will check with her as I can always go to see her beforehand for her to check them.


LinMM - I've always been more of a Lou Lou really but Loubylou just came to me! :-)


I'll keep you posted - if definitely either Edward or Stardust methinks

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The following has appeared before on Ballet.co but I thought it might be of help:



Buying Pointe Shoes


The first person to ask advice is your teacher.  She may very well have suggestions as to what style/make of pointe shoe would be appropriate for your feet.  So talk to her.  Also ask her advice as to what shop to go to.  You need to find a shop with a knowledgeable "fitter."


The next thing to remember: Don't Sew On Any Ribbons, Elastics, or wear your shoes (except for the fitting) UNTIL YOU TAKE THE SHOES IN TO SHOW YOUR TEACHER.


If the shoes are messed up - dirty - sewn on - the shop will not take them back. 


It is difficult the first few times to find shoes which are right for you since you, as a beginner to this, have little idea how the shoes should feel.  That's why you need your teacher's advice and a good experienced fitter at the shop.


How to buy pointe shoes? First of all I would NEVER, EVER – buy them from a catalogue or online, unless I lived perhaps in the wilds of some forest tundra without a store within a 1000 miles.  Would you buy any other kind of shoes without trying them on?  I wouldn’t……….


I always made a habit of having the clerk bring out every pair of shoes in my size (or close to my size) and style.  Every single shoe is different.  I found I could eliminate 50% of them before even trying them on.


Line them up in front of you on the floor and just look at them – are the vamps (part of the shoe which covers the faces of the toes) even?


Are the platforms (where you stand when on full pointe) bumpy?  The pleating should be as smooth as possible.


Do the platforms go straight across or do they angle off to one side?  This will throw the foot off center.


Are the shanks (support along the inside bottom of the shoe) already weak or broken  (from other dancers trying them on)?  Look at the bottoms of the shoes and see if there is a line across the sole of the shoe which would indicate a break line in the shank.


Are the lasts (the entire length of the shoe) straight?  I could really eliminate many just by checking that – if the last is crooked the shoes will throw your feet off center.  This usually results in the feet rolling in.


How about the wings (sides)?  Are they at a flattering yet supportive level height?


Is the thickness of the shank correct? Or is there too much of a “step” down between the thickness of the shank and the satin of the heel?


Is the sock (inner lining) smooth? A rough or wrinkled sock will abrade your skin.


Now take the shoes in your hands and very gently - VERY GENTLY - bend the shank and see how much resistance there is.  There should be resistance.  Otherwise the shank may already be weak either from the way it was manufactured or from other dancers trying them on.


When you have the shoes on – make sure you are trying them out on a non-carpeted surface.  Standing on a carpet will make quite a difference.


Are the shoes soiled?  That's an indication of prior usage.


When you have them on - do they gap anywhere? Are you able to stand on pointe with the entire platform in contact with the floor with your knees straight?



Switch lefts and rights - see how that feels.  Pointe shoes (slippers too) have no lefts or rights.


Check the stitching at the seams and see if it is secure (I had one pair pull apart within 15 minutes of wearing them.)


When selecting shoes remember to not only think in size of length but in size of width. Since every pair is constructed differently – sometimes changing one or the other would affect how the shoes fit.


Try to get to the shop without walking too much – especially in warm weather.  If you have to walk a great deal this will make your foot swell and will affect the sizing.  Wear the same tights you are going to wear to class.


I hope this helps and good luck!

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