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Ballet Talk for Dancers
dancepig

What Ballet Flats is everyone using - and why do you like them?

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wembley

I have the Bloch pro arches too. They show off my high arches and instep (I don't have very flexible feet, so I like being able to show that at least my feet have nice bone structure). I also like that there are no elastic drawstring ends.

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Hamorah

Once a year I buy myself a new pair of ballet shoes. They are the Bloch leather flats with the canvas insert under the arch. Don't know what the actual name is. I take two or three classes a week all year round. The stitching has never come undone and they last for ever (I only buy new shoes because I want to, not because I need to - sometimes I pass my old shoes on to my students!) The vamp is quite low - they support my feet AND give me a nice point. In short I love them and wouldn't wear anything else.

 

For teaching I have discovered Freeds all leather split soles. Wonderful shoes as they give me that bit of extra support. I prefer teaching in ballet shoes, so that I can demonstrate properly.

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dancepig

Freeds? I don't see those very often, will have to check it out (after I get the other 5 pairs). Thank you for the info!

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Hamorah

I bought them in the Freeds shop in London. If you order them by post be aware that they come up small. I think I had to take the eqivalent of an American size 7 1/2 instead of my usual 6 1/2 - in other words a size 5 UK instead of size 4. They're really nice soft leather and very comfy!

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gimpydancer

I'm always hoping to find a shoe that will make my feet look good. Don't know if it's my feet or the shoes but I don't particularly like my feet, but they do work :o

 

Does anyone find particular flats that flatter particular feet? Would it work similarly to pointe shoes?

 

I've used Sansha Pro canvas and a So Danca model that I can't remember. They both seem to fit ok, the Sanshas do seem bunchy in the sole. I have very long toes, almost no arch, and large, wide feet (size 9 in street shoes, but the Sanshas are an 11 wide :lol: ). I measured my feet one time looking at the pointe shoe criteria and I have a semi-tapered Greek/Morton's foot (second toe is longer than first), low/medium profile, and long toes.

 

Anyone have any suggestions?

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xSugarplum

If you have very long toes then the Bloch models might work for you due to their higher vamp....and the Pro Arch (I believe?) has an insert in the arch area to draw more attention to it. Could be worth a try-on.

 

I personally can't find a flattering canvas slipper because my toes are so tapered that when I point my toe, the entire tip of the slipper wrinkles/bunches up and the only toe you can actually see is my big toe (and I'm not even knuckling, my other toes are just too short, plus my feet are compressible). If anyone has any suggestion for me as well, I'd appreciate it! :D

 

I really would like to stay away from leather though...I just don't like it.

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missvjc420

I really like my Russian Pointe full sole canvas slippers. They are a v vamp length 2, which is a little long, I may order a V1 next time, and my Karl Heinz Martin asymmetrical shoes- a bit low on the heel for some, though. I did think about the Bloch Pro Elastic and the Luzio flats, Dancepig, so let me know what you think about those.

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gimpydancer

Thanks xSugarplum!

 

I have had good luck with Blochs as they seem to fit wider too. I believe my poor neglected tap shoes are Blochs. I'll have to double check at my local dance store as I think they were limited in my size for Blochs. I can't remember if I tried them on or not last time I was there.

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dancepig

Okay, I'm ready to review some shoes!

 

First, a description of my feet, in case you want to compare the shoes for your feet.

 

My feet are slightly tapered, medium length toes, low profile, wider metatarsals, narrow heel (think duck feet), high arch and instep, size 8 street shoe. I have Morton's Neuorma in both feet, more so in the right, so I don't use flat ballet shoes that are really tight in the width.

 

Bloch Pump - Canvas: I received a size 7.5 C in this shoe. This shoe comes with the criss-cross elastics, one side of each elastic sewn on the shoe. The length of this shoe is okay, but the box/toe area of this shoe is not tapered enough for my feet. I end up having excess material across my third through fifth toes, giving me the "genie" flip up look. Not a look I cultivate in my dance shoes. This is a basic canvas shoe. Nothing hugs my arch, vamp of the shoe is medium to long, and it has a drawstring. Although this shoe is finished nicely on the inside and the outside, I'm returning this shoe, basically because it is not tapered enough for my feet.

 

Bloch Pro Arch - Canvas: I received a size 7D in this shoe, but I think I should wear a 6.5C in this shoe, the 7D is a bit too long and wide, and there is no drawstring. This shoe comes with the criss-cross elastics, one side of each elastic sewn on the shoe. The box/toe area of this shoe is not tapered enough for my feet, but because the vamp is not as long as the Bloch Pump, the genie flip-up look does not seem to be as pronounced. This model comes with the mesh insert at the arch, which does hug the arch somewhat, and you can increase the hugging effect by snugging up the criss-cross elastics. One problem I had with this shoe is the heel. The bottom of the heel tends to stick out a bit on my feet. This shoe is finished nicely on the inside and the outside. I will return this shoe because the size is not right, but will try it in a 6.5C and perhaps keep that size.

 

Bloch Pro Elastic - Canvas: I got this shoe in a 6.5D. This is a good fit on my feet. This shoe is more tapered than the Pump and the Pro Arch, so no genie flip up here. This shoe has a band of elastic that measures about 1/3 of an inch (I don't have a ruler right now) that runs around the top of the shoe where you would normally have a drawstring. The criss-cross elastics are pre-sewn and are snug for me. This shoe has the same mesh insert at the arch as the Pro Arch shoe has. The vamp on this shoe is the same length as the Pro Arch, but the elastic lengthens the vamp by about 1/3 of an inch. The heel of this shoe does the same thing as the Pro Arch (sticks out a bit in the back) but not as much (most likely because it's a better size to begin with). The biggest problem I have with this shoe is the elastic/vamp area tends to look like it's twisting on the top outside part of my foot, but it's not too overwhelming, just a bit noticeable. This shoe is nicely finished on the inside and the outside. I will be returning this shoe because of the twisting on the top.

 

Grishko Ultimate - Canvas: I got this shoe in a size 8.5D, it's a perfect fit. This shoe is nicely tapered for my feet. The vamp is a great length, shorter than all of the Bloch shoes, and this shoe has a nice drawstring, thicker than the Bloch Pump drawstring. This shoe comes with the criss-cross elastics, one side of each elastic sewn on the shoe. There is nothing hugging my arch on this shoe, no inserts. The inside of the heel has a small bit of padding. This shoe is not as heavily pleated on the outside at the toe as the Blochs. This shoe is nicely finished on the inside and the outside. I will be keeping this shoe.

 

Angelo Luzio Total Stretch Canvas Ballet Shoe: I got this shoe in a 6.5 medium width (it comes in medium or wide widths). This is a good fit for my feet. This shoe is nicely tapered, no genie flip up problem. The vamp is a tad bit longer than the Grishko Ultimate, but not as long as any of the Bloch shoes. This length vamp works for my medium toes. There is a drawstring of medium width, similar to the Grishko Ultimate. I like the stretch canvas aspect of this shoe, it hugs my feet nicely all the way around. This shoe comes with elastics, but they are not attached. You don't really need elastics with this shoe because of the fit. The problem I have with this shoe is the inside. It's not finished well, and because of that, it feels as though it's bunching under my toes which bothers me very much. Because of the bunching these shoes will be going back, but I will try another pair of these shoes in the same size to see if this bunching is a problem that is unique to this particular pair (I'm sincerely hoping this is the case).

 

Bloch Elastosplit X Leather: I got this shoe in a size 6D. The length of this shoe is okay, but the vamp is far too long for my medium toes. This shoe is unique. There is no material under the arch. There is a sewn criss-cross elastic that runs from where you would normally sew the elastic (back near the heel) to the side edge of the vamp. These shoes made my feet look as though they were bandaged in a hospital after having extreme surgery. Not a look I'm going for. However, one of the younger students tried on these shoes, she has longer toes, and they looked wonderful on her and she loved them. Guess longer toes is the key to this model. I'm sending this pair back because they don't work for me.

 

Leo's Arabesque - Leather/Lycra blend: I got this shoe in a size 10 Wide (they run very small, in my opinion). I love the lycra in the heel, it runs almost to the instep on the sides, then up under the arch to the beginning of the metatarsal area. The vamp is medium length, about the same as the Angelo Luzios, and there is a nice width to the drawstring, about the same as the Grishko Ultimate. The taper of this shoe is perfect for my foot, no genie flip up on this shoe. The inside sole of this shoe has a foam padding of about ¼ inch in thickness, running from the heel to the very end of the toe area. I will be keeping this shoe.

 

I hope this helps!

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suzanne7575

thanks for this

 

I currently have a pair of cheap leather so danca flats and they are horrid so am on the lookout for something better and will most likely have to order online as all the stores round here only seem to seel the basic leather shoe.

 

I am thinking of getting a split sole shoe in canvas as i really don't like the full sole and makes my pointed foot look nothing like it is capable of looking like

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dancepig

I think the best split sole in canvas was the Bloch Pro Arch, unless your foot is extremely tapered, then it might not be tapered enough. It runs about 1 1/2 sizes smaller than street shoes (I wear an 8 and took a size 6.5) a C width is about a medium width. Good luck!

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suzanne7575

thanks

 

can i ask what you mean by tapered, do you mean that the toes go into a pointed shape?

 

I have always been told i have ballet feet (shame about the rest of the body) they are very petite is how i would describe them, they are very narrow both width ways and depth ways, long toes that go to a point at the end, slim heel and quite a big arch and average instep. I'm a UK 3.5.

 

The problem i have with the shoes i have at the moment is they just seem to bunch up at the toes and under my arch, i also need to have the drawstring pulled quite tightly to get them to fit which then in turn ends up digging in me

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dancepig

Tapered is when the toes get incrementally shorter from the big toe down, so that if you traced your foot, there would be an angle where the toes are. Some people have three or even four toes that are almost the same length, this is considered a "square foot". It sounds as though you have a tapered foot, from the description of what is happening with your current shoes.

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suzanne7575

yes my toes definatly do that, my second toe is just slighlty smaller than my big toe but then they get smaller each time quite rapidly. I think i'll try the pro arch and see what i think. Thanks for all your help

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dancepig

If your foot is tapered, the Pro Arch will more than likely bunch up under your toes the same as your current shoes are doing. Capezio just came out with a new shoe called the Freeform shoe. Here's a description:

 

The "Freeform" by Capezio® molds to the foot and is designed to be "barely there." Other features include suede sole patches contoured and cushioned for comfort, a power mesh arch, adjustable attached elastic and the unique styling allows this shoe to be worn for ballet, jazz, modern and contemporary.

 

I tried this shoe on, it seems to run about 1/2 size smaller than a street shoe.

 

I would recommend this shoe instead of the Bloch Pro Arch if you have a very tapered foot.

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