Lacing

There is a whole website devoted to this with some really exotic lacing styles! These are three simple and very effective methods for normal shoe use. I’ve coloured the two ends of the lace differently for the instructions – they will, of course, be the same colour (unless you are feeling really creative!).  Criss-cross lacing is simple, excellent for hiking boots and possible Derby shoes, but not at all good for Oxfords, as they need the neat “ladder ” look of the second and third styles below. The criss-cross interferes with the neat line of the Oxford’s split vamp.

Criss-cross lacing

Criss-cross lacing is simple, excellent for hiking boots and possible Derby shoes, but not at all good for Oxfords, as they benefit from the neat “ladder ” look of the second and third styles below. The criss-cross interferes with the neat line of the Oxford’s split vamp.

To Criss-Cross lace …

1) Thread the lace through both toe-end eyelets from below

2) Pull the ends through until they are the same length.

3) Bring each end out and cross it diagonally toward the next eyelet under the opposite side – moving up the instep, toward the ankle

4) Thread through the next eyelet and go back to (2)

Shoeshop lacing
Shoeshop lacing looks good on Oxfords and Derbys, but tends to pull the eyelets out of line (thanks to its lack of symmetry underneath) and also makes for loose ends that behave differently when lacing up!

Shoeshop Lacing …

1) Thread the lace through both toe-end eyelets from above

2) Bring one loose end all the way across to the last eyelet on the opposite side (blue in the diagram)

3) Thread the other (here, green) loose end diagonally across to pop up through the next eyelet – moving up the instep, toward the ankle

4) Cross the lace over on top, straight across the shoe and down into the eyelet

5) Go back to 3 until you reach the ankle end!

Shoeshop lacing looks good on Oxfords and Derby shoes, but tends to pull the eyelets out of line (thanks to its lack of symmetry underneath) and also makes for loose ends that behave differently when lacing up!

 

Straight European lacing

Straight European lacing needs a little more thought, but is a real find once you master it. The result is very even tension, lace ends that behave in the same way and a smart look that works with all shoes. It’s especially useful on smart boots, as it is easier to loosen and tighten the laces evenly with this style than it is with criss-cross and shoe-shop lacing.

Straight European Lacing

This needs a little more thought, but is a real find once you master it …

1) Thread the lace through both toe-end eyelets from above

2) Pull the ends through until they are the same length

3) Take one loose end (here green) across diagonally and below to pop up through the next eyelet – moving up the instep, toward the ankle

4) Take the other loose end (here blue) across diagonally, underneath, by two eyelets to pop up two eyelets closer to the ankle

5) Cross both ends over on top, straight across the shoe and down into the eyelets

6) Take both loose ends across diagonally, underneath, by two eyelets to pop up two eyelets closer to the ankle

7) Repeat 4 and 5 until one lace (here the blue one) only has one eyelet left – cross it under diagonally and through that eyelet

So – each lace goes either “1/2/2/2” or “2/2/2/1” in terms of jumping eyelets as it moves diagonally

The result is very even tension, lace ends that behave in the same way and a smart look that works with all shoes. It’s especially useful on smart boots, as it is easier to loosen and tighten the laces evenly with this style than it is with criss-cross and shoe-shop lacing