How should a pointe shoe drawstring be used?
Most pointe shoes are made with drawstrings, either cotton or elastic, which pass through the binding around the shoe and are tied at the top of the vamp. The drawstring is strictly for refining the fit, and its function is almost entirely aesthetic. If the pointe shoes are noticeably too large without use of the drawstring, it should never be used in order to create the illusion of a smaller shoe. Only when the fitting is almost complete should the drawstring be tightened, if needed, in order to bring the binding of the shoe more smoothly against the foot.
Russian Pointe offers its pointe shoes and demi-pointe shoes in two options: with a U-shaped vamp and elastic drawstring, and in a V-shaped vamp without drawstring. Many dancers find that they do not miss the drawstring when they opt for the V-shaped vamp, as long as the fitting is precise.