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Gaynor Minden, Inc.
140 West 16th Street
New York, NY 10011

Gaynor Minden Pointe Shoes > Designer's Statement

 

From the Designer:

I had always been outraged that dancers were expected to produce great art with painful shoes that lasted only one performance and did nothing to protect the body.

In designing the Gaynor Minden I quickly realized that all the problems associated with pointe shoes stemmed from their construction materials, and that paste, burlap and paper were not adequate to truly meet dancers' needs.

So I looked far and wide for better materials. I consulted ski-boot makers about foam, sail-makers about thread, materials experts about polymers, and of course, dance medicine experts about injury prevention and shoemakers about production. But mostly I consulted dancers and ballet teachers about technique and aesthetics; without them this shoe could not have come into existence.

The result of my eight years of research is a traditional-looking pointe shoe, with beautiful peach satin on the exterior that meets ballet's highest artistic standards. On the interior, however, is a completely modernized shoe for a remarkable kind of athlete.

Instead of paste and cardboard we use elastomerics. They never soften or break; you can choose from ones that are very stiff and supportive to ones that are almost as pliable as a slipper. We line our shoes with shock-absorbing foam, and place extra impact (and noise!) reducing materials in crucial places. We eliminated pleats that create instability working flat. Gaynor Minden was the first dancing shoe to use such impact-absorbing materials, and we use only the best.

We continue to innovate for the benefit of dancers.