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the magic dissapearing drawstring act


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anyone have a suggestion for getting back a canvas flat shoe drawstring that has dissapeared into it's hideyhole? i tried a needle and a bobby pin, but both attempts were useless. does this actually matter, or should i not do anything and wait until i need new shoes? :shrug:

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Get the very smallest crochet hook they make. Reach inside the drawstring channel and snag the errant string, and pull it out that way.

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Fabric stores sell a long (10 - 12 inches) thin hook that is used for turning spaghetti straps right side out. This should cost less than $2 and it works wonderfully.

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Knock, knock,....parent with experience here, please excuse me barging in....


Or... you could take your shoe to the shoe repair shop and they can unstitch the drawstring casing, replace the drawstring, and restitch. Then, don't forget to tie a knot in the drawstring so it doesn't happen again.


We used to do this often, and they only charged me $3 and did it while I waited so my daughter wouldn't have to miss class (or take class without them).

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knock knock


My dance sewing kit contains an upholstery needle, which is fairly blunt and has a large eye. When a string disappears, I proceed as follows:


1. Find a point in the casing where you can feel the string.


2. Make a small cut in the casing at that point, or a bit further back.


3. Use the blunt end of the needle to pull the string out of the casing through the hole.


4. Thread the needle with the string.


5. Put the needle into the casing and thread through.


I do not usually bother to sew up the hole in the casing. It doesn't seem to grow or cause a problem, and of course it might come in handy again.


I do like the idea of the spaghetti-strap hook...

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.....pull out the drawstring completely, thread into a bodkin and rethread through the casing. It takes less than 2 minutes.

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Knock, knock...parent here


A couple of ways to fix this. If the drawstring is still in the shoes and just "hiding" in the casing, feel around for the end of it. Then slice the casing (not through the stitching) and pull the drawstring out of the casing. Put the elastic through an upholstery needle and re-thread through the hole you've made to re-insert the elastic.


The other item every dancer needs in their dance bag (or their director's need in the emergency kit) is a serger bodkin. It is used to thread serger thread back through the seams. It looks like a needle but has an eye on both ends. It threads through in about 30 seconds. These can be found at clotilde.com if you can't find them in your stores. They are about $1.00 each and we buy them by the boxful.



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.....pull out the drawstring completely, thread into a bodkin and rethread through the casing.  It takes less than 2 minutes.

This is what I allways do. It's really simple. :D

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  • 7 months later...

I have the same problem on my sho. They are only new, but i obviously did not tie them tight enough before i cut them. Those are such good idea's. I feal even blonder having never thought of this myself.

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  • 1 month later...

DO you do the same thing with pointe shoes...I know this sounds stupid, but ya know they have a different type of draw string...Please reply quick u need to fix these b4 Nutcracker!

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Sorry dancergirl, I didn't see your post. The bodkin I use is the Double Transfer Needle in the Serger Accessories section at Clotilde. It's about $3.00 there but if you have an in town specialty sewing store (not JoAnn's or Hancock's) more like a place that sells good sewing machines and sergers you might find one locally. Currently, I am using it alot at our studio to change cloth drawstrings in pointe shoes to elastic ones. No special order needed, just whip out the bodkin and away you go. Just a note that you do have to buy new elastic since the one that comes in the shoes is a little too big for the bodkin. One size down works and can be found at any cloth store.




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