Merlet’s Newest Model; The Diva

Merlet DivaWhen you hear the word Diva, you can either imagine something negative or something positive. You may imagine a high maintenance woman who is very difficult to please. In the artistic realm, the definition of a diva is one of outstanding theatrical talent.

This past June, Merlet of France decided to name the latest addition to their pointe shoe collection Diva. The Diva is an aesthetically balanced shoe with several high-tech components.

The Diva Is Supposed To Be A Ready-To-Dance-In Model

Besides the non-slip platform, it comes with removable gel toe pads inside. This is a 3/4 shank shoe where the shank is made of polycarbonate materials; a tough, flexible substance similar to acrylic.

No matter how you view photographs of the model, it is obvious that a lot of care went into creating sleek lines for the shoe. So what is so Diva-like about it?

Did you notice those purple linings? Purple is the color of royalty. Ballet comes from royal lineage. A Diva, or a dancer of outstanding talent, may feel right at home in pointe shoes with a little hidden ” royal secret”.

Isn’t it interesting to find relevant innuendos in the world of pointe shoe marketing?

You can learn more about the Diva on the UK MerletDance website. The Diva isn’t featured on the Merlet USA website.

Pointe Relevé by Domyos Of France

In one of my earlier posts from 2010, I spoke about the French Domyos pointe shoe model Renaissance. After visiting the website, I noticed that the Renaissance model is sadly no more. However, there is another interesting shoe in its place; the Relevé.

According to Domyos, this model was created to alleviate pain on pointe. The inner toe is lined with an award-winning elastomer insert material for shock absorption and comfort. You can also see the traction tip on the platforms.

The wide metatarsal area reminds me of the Capezio Aerial. It isn’t going to work for every foot shape, but pointe shoes constructed with extra width in this area are a blessing for dancers that need the room.

With all the other athletic products and shoes that this gargantuan company manufactures, it’s wonderful to see a highly promoted specialized pointe model in their collection.

Another feature of this model is a 2-year guarantee. (!) Only time will tell if that is true. This model has only been on the market since Spring. If there is no paste to break down, a reinforced tip and strong polyester fabric used, it may outlast a traditional pointe shoe.

You can read details about the Relevé in English here.

Can This Model Survive?


The built-in elastomer padding

As I was writing this, I couldn’t help but remember the demise of a similar silicone-pad-built-in idea; the Capulet Juliet D30. After the novelty wore off and the negative reviews started spreading online, both the shoe and eventually the Capulet brand bit the dust.

It appears that Sansha bought them out. You can see that the poor shoe lives permanently in the clearance department. Here are the biggest dancer complaints about built-in padding:

  1. With frequent use, pads shred, break into pieces or move round inside the toe box.
  2. Odor. With the heat and sweat that builds up during class, pads that you can’t take out and replace with fresh ones turn pointe shoes into stink bombs.
  3. Feeling bulky, can’t feel the floor as well, no room to add additional toe protection.

On a positive note, I wish Domyos the very best success with the Relevé. I would love to hear your opinion about pointe shoes with built-in padding.

The Domyos official website offers a choice of many languages, but you can choose the UK link for English. You can find many more photos of their products on their Facebook page.

Mice Fiestas Pointe Shoes From Spain

Mice Fiestas Pointe Shoes

Mice Fiestas are handmade in Spain

From the land of clicking castanets and Flamenco dancing comes another  pointe shoe brand discovery, Mice Fiestas of Spain.

Mice Fiestas means My Parties in Spanish. Although the company logo is a cute little mouse, the word Mice is pronounced meese in Spanish. The play on word pronunciation between the two languages via a mouse logo is quite clever.

Mice Fiestas was established in Madrid, Spain in 1995. They sell many different types of dance garments, shoes and accessories. The most I can share about the pointe shoe model is that it is a genuine made-in-Spain brand.

MouseI am muy triste ( very sad) that their online catalog page loads as a blank when I click the ballet-pointe shoe category image. Although they have Twitter and Facebook accounts, there is no activity on either site to do more sleuthing.

Mice Fiestas Official Website- Click on the bottom image that says Haga click to enter the website.

Capezio’s Latest Pointe Shoe Model-The Airess

Capezio AiressPronounced like the rich-girl-sounding name of heiress, Capezio has cleverly named their latest pointe shoe model Airess. Perhaps it’s just a coincidence, but clever nonetheless!

This model looks a bit different from many of the others in their collection. The first thing that stands out is the rosy-pink colored liner. The stamp pattern on the sole is also different.

The Airess reminds me a little of the Aerial with its wide metatarsal area and sharp taper down to the platform.

Capezio Airess sole

The sole is unique on the Airess

What makes the Airess special? According to Capezio, the model offers:

  • 2 different toe box options and 3 shank options
  • Gripping no-bunch liner for traction
  • A rounded platform edge for rolling onto pointe easier
  • Smooth heel aesthetics

Read Capezio’s detailed specifications on the Airess

I wish all pointe shoe models had a video  showing them in action on a real dancer’s feet.  As with any new model, time ( and dancer reviews)  will tell  if the Airess passes muster with many or flops into pointe shoe oblivion.

Sutorio De Maserejian-The End Of A Cobbler’s Legacy?

Sutorio de Maserejian-Ballet SlipperA while ago, I had discovered another pointe shoe brand based in Argentina. Because I post in random order, I took it for granted that the brand, its products and its website would still be up and running when I got around to writing about it.

The brand name of the company was called Sutorio De Maserejian. The word sutorio means belonging to or related to the art of making shoes. When I first discovered the brand, I had an interesting time learning about the company and its founder, Stephan Artin Maserejian.

Sadly, when I revisited the old company website, the domain was no longer viable. There were wonderful family photos and pictures of the workshop where the dance shoes were made by hand in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

After doing some online searching, I found the obituary of Stephan Maserejian. His legacy and life story are really inspiring. There is a memorial slide show that includes a photograph of a cobblers bench from his company workshop.

Leotard by Sutorio de MaserejianI have tried to contact his wife and son through their Facebook pages to find out what happened to the company brand name. I am hopeful that I will get a response although they don’t appear very active on the site.

Searching the company name brings up the old Argentina address and there are references online to a location in El Salvador, but it leads nowhere. I will have to put this brand under the mystery category.

Sutorio de Maserejian dance garments and shoes can still be found for sale on eBay-type sites in South America. Unless I can contact the Maserejian family and find out otherwise, this brand name may have sadly disappeared into the pages of pointe shoe history with the passing of its founder.