Pointe Shoe Prep
When I get a new pair of pointe shoes, I sew my ribbons and elastic and I darn around the edge of the box of the shoes. I do this by taking a spool of thin darning thread and sew loop knots around the box. Not every ballerina does this, but I think it adds to the life of the shoe and protects the box from wearing down as quickly. Dancers either sew their elastic in one loop or criss cross. I prefer the criss cross to keep the shoe hugged against the arches of my feet. I also prefer elastic ribbons instead of satin so that my ankle has a smooth line with no cutting in to the achilles. Once the sewing is done, I smush down the vamp and the wings of the shoe a bit to make the shoe less stiff and more malleable to my feet. I then try them on and switch them around to decide which shoe works best for which foot. Sometimes the box of a shoe will slightly favor the right or left foot on balance. And that's my process!