For a pointe shoe to look, feel, and function just right it must be fitted just right. Achieving that precise, professional, customized fit in a traditional pointe shoe often requires a “Special Make-Up,” with traditional delays, traditional expenses, and traditional hassles.

Gaynor Minden has revolutionized pointe shoe fitting, too.

You fit by selecting six crucial specifications: Length, Box


Shape, Width, Shank Stiffness, Vamp Height, Heel Configuration. It’s the equivalent of your own Special Make-Up in a stock shoe.

(But if you really want that Special Order we can do it.)

Please Note: This information is intended only to help you understand our extraordinary fitting system, not to make you size yourself. Let our fitters do that.

1. Fit Overall Length:
  Select Size.
  4 through 12 1/2

Gaynor Mindens sizing runs about 1/2 to 1 full size up from American street shoe size. Our size 8, for example, will probably fit a street shoe size 7. Do not fit tight. Our specially lined satin does not stretch out nearly as much as conventionally-lined satin does. A small 1/4" pinch at the highest part of the heel, up by the drawstring casing, is correct.

2. Fit Forefoot:
  Select Box.
  #2, #3 or #4

3. Fit Midfoot:
  Select Width
  Narrow, Medium, or Wide
4. Assess Support Needs:
  Select Shank.
  Hard through Pianissimo

Remember—the stiffness won’t diminish over time!

All Gaynor Minden shanks and boxes are made from an elastometric polymer. Unlike conventional paper-based shanks and boxes, Gaynor Mindens will not deteriorate, break-in or even soften. Be sure to choose a shank that not only provides adequate support but that also provides adequate flexibility. The box at right shows how our different shanks correspond to the stiffness of conventional pointe shoes.

5. Fit Top of Foot:
  Select Vamp.
  Regular or Deep

6. Fit Back of Foot:
  Select Heel.
  Regular, High, or Sleek

The Code Explained

Stock Availability Chart. Check the chart below to be sure the combination of length, box, and width that you have selected is available. For example, a size 9 with a #4 box is available in narrow, medium, and wide, but the size 9 with a #2 box is available only in the narrow. Availability is based on our knowdedge, after years of fitting these shoes, of what fits properly and what sells well. It is the rare dancer who is truly in between box sizes. In that case try the larger box and use Dynamic Box Liner (see the Totally Toes Kit).
Sleekfit Availability Chart. Sleekfit is for narrow heels. We make our Sleekfits on special lasts. If you have chosen a Sleekfit please check the chart below to be sure it is available in the length, box, and width you selected.
Color: Gaynor Mindens are a beautiful European Pink. White is available by special order.