Monday, November 19, 2012

New Capezio Romeo slippers

As I wrote in my posting Sticky floors, sticky shoes, I decided I needed a new pair of shoes for use on the Marley floors found in the more ballet-focused studios where I've started taking classes. I wanted to get a new pair of Capezio Cobras, just like the ones I had.

In the mean time, though, Capezio has discontinued the Cobras.

Is this starting to sound like one of those "hunting for the perfect pointe shoe" blog entries? Ladies, I empathize with you. I don't have nearly the same difficulties, but it's getting hard to find a local dancewear store that stocks gear for men. I could probably go to New York City and find them, but the cost of the trip will buy a lot of $20 mistakes.

Last week, with some trepidation, I ordered a pair of Capezio Romeo slippers, which appear to have replaced the Cobra. They showed up in the mail today. Here's a comparison of the two.

In both of these photos the Romeo is on the left and the Cobra is on the right. Click on the photo to see an enlarged version.

The first thing I noticed was the suede patch under the forefoot is larger on the Romeo. One of the things I didn't like about the Cobras was that I felt like there was a pad under the middle of my foot, with the joints of the first and fifth toes on either side. It might just be psychological, but it felt like this made me laterally less stable. Maybe the wider pad will alleviate that problem (or maybe it'll just invalidate the excuse). The pad also seems to go further forward (the pleated area is smaller), so maybe I'll be turning on the suede rather than the pleats. The suede pad under the heel appears to be about the same size, but honestly, the heel gets a lot less work than the forefoot in ballet.

Looking at the top side I noticed that the inside of the Romeo is lined with a "moisture absorbent brushed polyester/cotton lining" that is very soft to the touch. The Cobra is lined with what feels like plain cotton cloth -- I didn't even realize they were lined until just now. Less obvious, but perhaps more importantly, the lengthwise strip of cloth covering the lengthwise seam is gone. I find this strip is always getting folded over or bunched under my foot, and it's annoying. You can see the heel padding in the Romeo, while it's hidden under the cloth strip in the Cobra. There are pads under the forefoot in both shoes, constructed much as the heel pads.

It wasn't until I was really looking closely that I noticed that the construction of the two shoes is quite different. The Cobra is constructed of three canvas pieces. The upper wraps around the foot and is sewn lengthwise under the foot, forming the front 2/3rds of the shoe. The rear third consists of two pieces, one for each side, joining in a lengthwise seam that runs under the heel and up the back.

The Romeo is constructed of four canvas pieces. The fourth piece is a diamond shape and forms the middle third of the shoe. This eliminates the lengthwise seam under the middle of the foot, and moves the crosswise seams to back near the heel. Capezio claims this makes the shoe more flexible, which appears to be true if only marginally. I don't have enough arch for this to make a difference, but maybe it'll make the shoe a tad more comfortable.

I'll post again after I've had a chance to wear them a bit.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments are encouraged! It doesn't matter whether you're a total newbie asking a question or a professional offering advice; I want to hear from you.

That said, Blogger sometimes quarantines comments for reasons I can't explain. If your comment doesn't show up immediately it may be waiting for approval. I'll approve almost anything relevant, but I have to notice it first! Spam will be trashed, of course.