The Elegance and Majesty of Autographed Ballet Pointe Shoes August 31 2020

Whether you want to hold a moment of history in your hands or soak in the energy of excellence, autographed ballet pointe shoes are true collector's items. Read on to find out more about ballet shoes and the process the dancer would have gone through to get their pumps made.   

What Are Ballet Pointe Shoes Made From?

As delightfully elegant and fragile as a ballet shoe looks, it's actually a robust piece of gear. The tip is made of a densely-packed bunch of fabric and material that's usually solidified with glue. Because you put your entire weight on this tiny tip, it needs to be incredibly sturdy. A mixture of cotton, satin, and leather makes up the rest of these beautiful boots.

Every pair of ballet pointe shoes is 100% unique — they're hand designed and crafted for the specific feet and gait of the dancer.

What Is the Purpose of Ballet Pointe Shoes?

The ballet shoe elongates the dancer's dainty frame, giving the illusion that she's dancing on air. They add extra mystique and drama to the performance, in addition to adding an extra layer of skill to the craft.  

How Do You Break Them In?

Dancers can't step straight into these shoes and instantly start moving like the delicate figures you see on stage. There are various ways to break in pointe shoes:

  • Use wax to prolong wear and mold the box
  • Take a carpenter's file to the sole
  • Close a door on the box
  • Use a hammer to soften the box of the shoe
  • Darn the platform of the box to stop the satin from fraying

How Long Can You Wear a Pair of Ballet Shoes?

In some cases, a pair of ballet shoes may only be used for one single performance. Professional ballet dancers can go through hundreds of pairs of ballet shoes each season. They usually cost around $80 per new pair, so it's pretty expensive being a professional ballet dancer. 

What Age Can You Get Ballet Pointe Shoes?

Girls can't get their first pair of pointe shoes until they've built up enough muscle in their legs, ankles and feet. This is usually somewhere between 11 and 13 — with most professional ballet dancers starting their craft at around age three or four. 

Who Wore the First Pair?

The first known ballerina to wear ballet pointe shoes was Marie Taglioni in the 1830s, although it's very likely the practice began long before. These early pointe dancers stuffed the box of their shoes with various materials, including starch. Italian shoemakers soon refined the process, turning to burlap, cardboard, and satin. Toe dancing has been considered the height of elegance in ballet dancing ever since.  

Find the Perfect Pair of Autographed Ballet Pointe Shoes

Get your very own pair of autographed ballet pointe shoes here at Tamino Autographs

We currently have in stock a pointe shoe double signed by Rudolf Nureyev and Margot Fonteyn - a one of a kind piece of ballet memorabilia!

Other signed pointe shoes are available in our section of Autographs - Ballet.

See a photo at the top