What I’ve Got: Freed’s Pointe Shoes

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A ballerina’s pointe shoes are highly, highly personal objects. Even after spending hours searching for a shoe to purchase, we continue to slice up the shanks of the shoes, strategically strengthen others, and mold them to our feet. One brand that takes pointe shoe personalization to an even higher level is Freed of London, founded in 1929 by Frederick Freed and his wife Dora.

Freed remains one of the most popular brands of pointe shoes today, with over 50% of the market share. They maintain their desirability and core philosophy by allowing dancers to customize their shoes based on a host of aspects. Each shoe is handcrafted by one of their expert “makers“, who  collectively supply over 150,000 shoes a year. Each maker stamps a unique symbol onto every pair produced, and dancers tend to continue using the same maker, pair after pair. 

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