Grishko Katya / Nikolay Katya Pointe Shoes

Grishko Katya / Nikolay Katya Pointe Shoes

Grishko Katya is a recent addition to the huge variety of pointe shoe models available from Grishko (Nikolay in the US).

I first saw this model at the Atlantic Dance Retail Show in Los Angeles back in February this year (2020).

nikolay katya grishko nikolay atlantic dance retail show ADRS los angeles l.a straight to the pointe grishko master pointe shoe fitter leanne

Speaking about Katya at the Grishko/Nikolay Seminar at The Atlantic Dance Retail Show in February 2020 in Los Angeles

As a Grishko/Nikolay Master Pointe Shoe Fitter, I am here to give you the low down on these pointe shoes and tell you how they feel en pointe too. 

grishko katya nikolay katya canvas matt pointe shoes contemporary ballet

Grishko/Nikolay Katya in matt Canvas in the ballet pink shade. Photo from Grishko/Nikolay.

It was designed with contemporary ballet in mind. And for dancers requiring a matt look pointe shoe instead of having to pancake their shoes.
It also has great sound absorption.

But as you will see, it is available in satin and canvas. And is suitable for all types of ballet. Not just contemporary ballet. 
It is also available in different shades of satin and canvas to provide a close match to a variety of skin tones. (Which, by the way, Grishko/Nikolay now offer all their pointe shoes in different shades of satin!)

The idea of Katya being made in canvas is that it makes the shoe more breathable.
And provides the matt look that the majority of students and professionals require for on stage. (No shine and close match to skin tone). If you weren’t already aware, often students and professionals have to calamine or pancake their shoes to match their skin for performance (depending on what they are performing of course, but this is common practice).

Plus, in both canvas and satin, Katya is super smooth in appearance. With zero – minimum wrinkles.

Katya also features a pre applied suede cap with *no* pleats, with a very flat platform that when en pointe you can barely notice the edges it is that flat.

grishko katya nikolay katya pointe shoes canvas matt matte pre applied suede cap tip

Grishko/ Nikolay Katya pre applied suede cap. Photo from Grishko/Nikolay.

The Katya is very durable in material, sole and platform to allow for contemporary ballet moves such as sliding motions. 

And the pre applied suede cap allows excellent grip and durability. 


First up, lets go through some of the features:

Last: Built on 2007 last.

Fit: Fits exactly the same as 2007 and other models built on 2007 last.

Fabric: Available in canvas or satin.

Colours: Available in standard ballet pink in satin and canvas but also available in latte and espresso satin colours, and tan in canvas. 

Vegan Option: Yes can be made vegan.

Tropicana Glue Option: Yes.

Shanks: Shank construction is the same as 3007 (easy roll through).

However it’s important to note: The shank is (-5mm) and the sole is (-10mm) shorter than other Grishko pointe shoe models.

This enables extra flexibility in the heel part.

Shank Strengths Available: Comes in super soft, soft, medium, hard and super hard.

Remember, like all Grishko/Nikolay pointe shoes, you can indeed special order Katya if you wish to have adjustments made to it.

grishko katya nikolay katya pointe shoes matt canvas

Photo from Grishko/Nikolay.

I will now tell you what Grishko/Nikolay tell us about the Katya model then I will give you my own input.

– Long-lasting (longer lifespan compared to the satin) breathable, matt ballet pink canvas gives no flecks on the scene. 

– Stays almost invisible on the foot, which visually prolongs the leg length. 

– The pre-sewn leather platform increases lifespan and makes pointe shoes silent. 

– The max-flat platform gives confidence in the balance. 

– Combination of canvas and leather along with high flexibility are the perfect tool for contemporary dance (i.e. glides and other elements). 

– Easy roll-up to en-pointe position perfect for fine movements. 

– Smooth appearance with no wrinkles or bagginess. 

– Elastic paste adopts to the feet form retaining flexible during the full period of use. 

– Low side and heel cuts accentuate the dancer’s arch and add flexibility to the shoe.”

Photo from Grishko/Nikolay.


Katya feels very similar to “Nova” and “Miracle” models.

Shape: Although built on 2007 last (just like Nova is), it feels more like Nova and Miracle than 2007. You will know what I mean if you have worn all the models built on 2007 last.

Box Paste: Elastic paste. But feels more sturdy than the “light weight elastic” paste featured in some of the other models. But isn’t as tough as the “classic smart” paste.

It molds to the foot well and springs back to shape after wear very easily.

Profile Height (also known as crown): It is low and feels like Nova and Miracle. Although it’s built on 2007 last, I do find that the profile height varies between models built on 2007 last in my opinion. 

Platform: Medium and oval shape just like Nova and Miracle but with no edge. Also, due to the no pleats and the pre applied suede cap it feels more hard wearing and a lot flatter.

Vamp Height: They claim it’s medium but it feels quite long to me like the standard 2007 vamp (which I personally class as a medium-long vamp but not as long of course as say vaganova/Maya 2/Ulanova 2).

Vamp Cut: U cut.

Wings: Fairly high.

Side Quarters: Low. Feels same as Smart Pointe side quarters. 

Heel Height: Low. Feels same as Nova and Miracle heel height.

Shank: Feels similar to 3007 shank construction. However, it my opinion it does feel tougher. Despite being the same construction as 3007 shank strength. 

I have a pair in super soft and medium.

Sole: The sole is machine stitched. 

My Final Personal Thoughts: I would like some changes made to Katya to make it suitable for more variety of feet. And it is not a model that I feel works for me personally. But that isn’t to say that you shouldn’t try it and see for yourself. I just feel that with some adjustments, Katya could work for more dancers.
For Katya to work on my own feet – it would require a change of platform shape and width, no suede cap, a lower vamp, a slightly higher profile and possibly a different shank. But even though the shank is the same construction as 3007 – the 3007 model works fine on my foot without having to special order it.
Though I did recently special order a pair of 3007 just because I fancied some adjustments and was curious.

grishko katya in satin nikolay katya satin pointe shoes

Grishko Katya in satin.


My opinion regarding who should try the Katya model is as follows:

And remember, always get fitted. And when choosing a pointe shoe model, you need to take into consideration many factors. Not just one or two… So for example: Your foot shape, toe configuration, profile height, arch height and strength, general foot strength, ankle flexibility, alignment, what you personally expect from a shoe, and more.

Level Of Dancer: Dancers who are already en pointe right up to professional level. I would not deem this shoe as suitable for beginners.

Toe configuration: Tapered to semi tapered. So “Egyptian” and also “Greek” configuration may work in it.

Toe Length: Medium – longer toes but not too long. And certainly not short. You would need to custom order this shoe to suit short and very long toes.

Profile: Feet with a low – slight medium profile. Any higher profile – you will struggle and your foot will bulge and it will generally be too tight.

Remember: profile height cannot be changed in custom order. It would need to be a new last (which, Grishko/Nikolay can also do but you would need to request it and it takes longer and costs more than a special order).

Foot Strength: Adequate foot strength. Not suitable for weak feet. Average – medium strength. Possibly strong feet with correct shank chosen. 

Arch Height: Could work on low arches if the correct shank is chosen and you have adequate ankle flexibility. Suitable for medium arch.

I would say this model would not work on high arch feet. Unless it was modified in special order.

Foot Width: Narrow to medium. Will absolutely not work on a wide foot. I am super narrow and it fits me fine in width in X and XX.

Also, due to the low side quarters, dancers who have a fuller foot (even when the rest of their foot is narrow or average) may require the side quarters to be made higher in special order.

Heels: Dancers with narrow – average heels. If you have a very full heel you would need it adjusted in special order.

Caution: If you have stiff ankles/not great ankle flexibility you will struggle in this shoe even in the softest shank option and even in special order.

Should you wish to try the Grishko/Nikolay Katya pointe shoe model please get in touch with your nearest Grishko/Nikolay retailer.

Or feel free to contact me for a virtual pointe shoe fitting! 

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