All signed up for dance lessons? Now it’s time to purchase the necessary clothing and footwear. I’ll start by telling you my experience buying dancewear then follow up with all the local places our readers said to shop!
My oldest daughter is just starting her 4th year of dance. Her teacher has always recommended split sole dance shoes and I have ordered these several years in a row. They have the shoes listed under the American size my kids is wearing now, making it easy for me to order (no converting to a “ballet size” or “European size.”) Also since they are made of (I assume fake) leather, they stretch throughout the year and I feel like I get quite a bit of use out of them.
Her exact tap shoes are these. I like that the strap is elastic and you don’t have to tie them. (The photo shoes that they have a tie, which they do, but there is elastic under that.)
These tights are awesome because when the shoes come off, you can stick your feet through the holes so you don’t rip the tights. (Search “transition tight” to find similar.)
Who doesn’t have this bag? Ours has lasted 3 years!
In addition to the places listed below, I’d also ask where your
daughter child takes dance to see if they have shoe exchanges or used shoe sales within the studio students. Don’t forget to check all the online resale sites, too.
Here are the local places the moms recommend:
1497 South Perkins Road
- Barbaras Danceware is the best. They will take the time to fit her correctly.
- for a toddler – online and Walmart are ok. want something higher quality – Barbara’s dancewear.
- Payless, Walmart, etc don’t do fittings, and they can’t properly place elastic on shoes. Also, cheaper shoes tend to be made from a cheaper material, which isn’t as flexible. This makes all the difference when you are learning to point your toes.
7990 Trinity Road, Cordova
Good with sizing. Don’t bother with discount places . You will only save a few dollars and the quality is significantly lower. If you are spending money on decent lessons, then get decent shoes.
- The pink leather ballet are @ $20 and the tap are @ $25 plus they have the buy one get one 1/2 price a lot.
- But the payless tap shoes are ok. They are like dress shoes with taps on them. I taught a tap class and was kinda disappointed that they didn’t have my size there…ordered them on allaboutdance.com. The ballet shoe leather really must be soft like Ms. Steph said. And about a half size bigger so she can grow. Good luck! And happy dancing!
- The ballet shoes I saw at Walmart and target were more like isotoner house shoes. I was just on the hunt for the same thing. We got tap shoes at Payless for 26.99 and were lucky enough to get some really nice ballet shoes from a friend.
942 W Poplar Ave, Collierville
- If the toddler has a small foot – try Jackson’s shoes and have taps put on smaller “regular’ shoes ( i have done this with tiny toed black patten-leathered shoes.) but catalog /online is the best bet.