If you find that you go over too far on your pointe shoes or that your arch is slipping forward and out of your shoe when you’re up en pointe, you might need vamp elastics. A vamp elastic is a thick elastic band that goes across the opening of the shoe (at the front end, closest to the toes) and helps secure your foot in place inside the shoe. As always, ask your instructor before sewing anything onto your pointe shoes, as some teachers are very strict about how they want pointe shoes to be worn by their students.
What You’ll Need
- Pointe shoes, fitted by a pointe specialist
- Needle and thread (Bunheads Stitch Kits are great for pointe users)
- Vamp elastic
Sewing the Vamp Elastics
STEP 1: Measure out how much elastic you’ll need to stretch across your arch from one side of the shoe to the other. Leave enough to have roughly ½” on each side of the shoe’s opening. Once you’ve figured that out, cut the vamp elastic.
STEP 2: Get your teacher to help establish how high or low the elastic needs to be in the shoe. For people with higher arches, the vamp elastic will typically be higher.
STEP 3: Using a whipstitch, sew from where the wings of the shoe begin to the end of the elastic, following the curve of the drawstring.
STEP 4: Repeat step 3 on the other side of the shoe.
STEP 5: Repeat whole process on second shoe.
Now that your pointe shoes have vamp elastics in them, hopefully they’ll be safer and easier to use. If you need help sewing elastics or pointe shoe ribbon, check out our other posts on those topics.