Shoe Lacing Techniques…pt1

Mathematics tells us that there are over 2 Trillion ways of feeding a lace through the six pairs of eyelets on an average shoe. This article however presents a (somewhat more realistic) typical cross-section of traditional and alternative lacing methods that I’ve either learnt or been told about.

The selection is limited to those methods that are widely used, have a particular uniqueness about them, or that I just like the look of.

1 The Criss Cross Lacing: crisscrosslacing01

     This is probably the most common of all the lacing methods. The laces simply criss-cross as they work their way up the shoe.

         Pluses:                                                        Minuses:

  •  Simpe to lace                                      Corrugates the shoe
  • Comfortable 


2 Straight (Bar) Lacing: straightbarlacing01

         Often referred to as “Fashion Lacing” or “Lydiard Lacing”, this variation of Straight Lacing eliminates the underlying diagonals, which looks neater plus relieves pressure on the top ridge of the foot. This is my personal favourite.

         Pluses:                                                         Minuses:

  • Comfortable                                 Might look odd on some shoes
  • Neat look
  • Lengthens ends


3 Shoe Shop Lacing: shoeshoplacing01

          Commonly seen in shoe shops because many new shoes come pre-laced this way from the factory, this method is another easy way of Straight Lacing.

         Pluses:                                                         Minuses:

  • Easy to lace                                           Shortens ends


4 Ladder Lacing: ladderlacing01

         This distinctive lacing, which looks just like a ladder, is also useful for “shortening” long lace ends. U.S. paratroopers and ceremonial guard units wear jump boots with white ladder lacing.

         Pluses:                                                         Minuses:

  • Distinctive look                                   Harder to tighten
  • Stays very tight                                   Shortens ends


5 Spider Web Lacing: spiderweblacing01

         Another decorative lacing method used on military boots, which is like Ladder Lacing, but running at an angle, creating a woven web of shoelace.

         Pluses:                                                          Minuses:

  • Distinctive look                                    Harder to tighten
  • Stays firm and tight                             Shortens ends

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