​DIY Shoelaces Tutorial

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So you've taken advantage of the great holiday deals at Englin's Fine Footwear, and you've found the perfect pair of shoes to give to someone special. Now you need a few stocking stuffers, or you want to give them something a little more personal, but you're out of ideas. We've got your back! Whether you want to craft a special gift to go with a new pair of shoes or you love your own shoes so much that you want to dress them up, we have some quick and easy DIY ideas to take your shoes to the next level.

DIY Shoelaces

What you need:

- Scissors

- Ribbon

- Washi tape

Let's start simple with these DIY shoelaces. Changing out the laces can give shoes a whole new look, and it can give you a chance to show off your unique sense of style. Plus, it's always a good idea to have a spare set of laces for your favorite shoes! There are only two supply items (plus scissors) for this project, but you have a myriad of possibilities.

Polka-dot washi tape (Scotch) and Hello Kitty ribbon (Offray).

First, you need the lace material. We chose this cute Hello Kitty ribbon, but you can pick whatever suits your fancy, or what you think the person you're gifting to would like. Other options include grosgrain ribbon, lace, leather cord, and paracord, or if you're handy with a sewing machine, you can even make your laces from fabric.

PRO TIP: If you use ribbon, it's a good idea to choose one that is colored/printed on both sides, since
both sides will show when the shoe is laced up. Also make sure that you purchase enough material—
we used a 9' spool of ribbon and it was barely enough!

You will also need some washi tape. If you're not a Pinterest fanatic, you may not have heard of washi tape, but it's very versatile and readily available at both department and craft stores. Similar in feel to masking tape, washi tape is made from natural fibers and comes in a wide variety of colors and prints. There are other ways to make the aglets (those little tubular bits that seal the ends of shoelaces), and while washi tape isn't the most durable, it is the easiest!

Step 1: Unlace the shoes you're crafting for, measure the ribbon against the laces, and cut two pieces to size.

Your shoelaces are longer than you might think, so if you're worried about purchasing enough ribbon, you may want to measure your laces before you buy. As with most crafting, it's better to have too much than too little. You can always use excess ribbon for another project (like the shoe clips below!).

Step 2: Roll and twist one end of the ribbon, then roll it up tightly in washi tape.

Start close to the end of the washi tape. It's a bit harder than it looks!

Try to keep the washi tape straight as you're rolling. The tighter you roll it, the better it will look and the longer it will last. If you're having trouble, try tucking it with your fingernail as you go. You'll want at least 5-7 layers of washi tape.

Step 3: Cut off frayed ribbon and excess tape.

Cute, isn't it?

If you have threads from the ribbon hanging out or your tape is a little crooked at the end, just snip it off with scissors.

Need a hardier alternative for the aglets? Here are some ideas:

- After you finish, give the washi tape a coat or two of outdoor Mod Podge

- Cut small pieces from a plastic tube (like aquarium tubing or the hollow middle of plastic Q-tips), slip the end of the ribbon inside, and carefully melt the plastic with a lighter

- On some materials, you can either melt the raw ends or use a seam sealant to keep it from fraying

Just like that, you have a new pair of shoelaces! Test them out on the shoes to make sure they fit properly before you give them away. This project is very inexpensive and takes less than half an hour, but the results are dramatic.

Popular lace-up shoes you could pair your DIY laces with:

Munro Veranda

Munro Veranda in Grey Suede/Patent

Munro Veranda in Grey Suede/Patent. Also available in Black Leather/Suede and Black Suede/Patent.

A women's lightweight lace-up that can be paired equally well with jeans or slacks, the  Munro Veranda is an attractive shoe with unbeatable fit and luxurious comfort. Combining goat suede and patent leather, the Veranda offers subtle contrast that draws the eye. This stylish shoe's outsole is shock-absorbent and slip-resistant, but is made of ultra-light EVA to keep that spring in your step. A removable contoured footbed and riveted steel shank provide stability and support all day long. And like all Munro shoes, the Veranda is available in an unparalleled range of sizes (4-14) and widths (SS-WW).

The Munro Veranda typically comes with standard black laces, which are perfect for a classic look. Use printed ribbon instead for a funky twist, or lace to add feminine charm.

Clarks Desert Boot (Men's and Women's)

Clarks Men's Desert Boot in Beeswax Leather    Clarks Women's Desert Boot in Taupe Distressed

Left: Clarks Men's Desert Boot in Beeswax Leather. Also available in Black SuedeBronze NubuckOakwood Suede, and more.

Right: Clarks Women's Desert Boot in Taupe Distressed. Also available in Beeswax LeatherBlack SuedeChocolate Suede, and Oakwood Suede.

For those who like a more rugged look, the Clarks Men's Desert Boot/Clarks Women's Desert Boot is a classic lace-up boot that complements a variety of outfits. This iconic boot, designed by Nathan Clark in 1950 and remaining virtually unchanged ever since, has a timeless appeal and an unmistakable silhouette. Crafted from high quality, breathable leather or suede on a traditional crepe sole, the original Clarks Desert Boot is gorgeous in its simplicity.

The Clarks Desert Boot is great for this project because the laces are relatively short, and it can be matched with virtually any color or material. Go wild!

Sorel Tivoli High II

Sorel Tivoli High II in Curry

Sorel Tivoli High II in Curry. Also available in Black

Sorel boots are a winter staple, and the women's Sorel Tivoli High II is the ideal cold weather boot. Knee-high and moisture proof, the Tivoli High II makes tromping through the snow as fun as it was when you were a kid. The breathable upper of waterproof suede is lined with soft microfleece and 100g insulation to keep your feet warm, dry, and cozy. A removable molded footbed provides optimal support, while a rubber outsole gives you the traction you need on slick surfaces. Top it off with faux fur at the collar, and you have one seriously stylish winter boot!

On the opposite end of the spectrum from the Desert Boot, the Sorel Tivoli High II has extremely long laces, all the way up its 11½" shaft. Luckily, it features D-ring hardware and ghillie-style lacing, so it's easy to re-lace. Plus, this allows you to make a truly unique statement—that much lacing is bound to be noticed!

New Balance 928v2 Leather (Men's and Women's)

New Balance Men's 928v2 Leather in White    New Balance Women's 928v2 Leather in Grey

Left: New Balance Men's 928v2 Leather in White. Also available in Black and Brown.

Right: New Balance Women's 928v2 Leather in Grey. Also available in Black and White.

The New Balance Men's 928v2 Leather/New Balance Women's 928v2 Leather is a handsome walking shoe from the brand you trust for the best in sneakers and athletic gear. Motion control, ROLLBAR stability tech, and ABZORB midsole cushioning combine to give you the very best in comfort and support. The 928v2 Leather is treated for odor resistance to keep feet fresh, and the padded collar and tongue ensure that every step feels as good as the one before. The full grain leather upper gives this sneaker a sophisticated vibe and helps it to stand out from the crowd wherever you go.

The traditional sneaker design of the New Balance 928v2 Leather makes swapping out the laces simplicity itself. Provide contrast to this walking shoe's muted tones by brightening it up with neon fabric laces, or keep it subtle with earth toned laces, like pine green, mink, or soft gray.

Stay tuned for another tutorial, coming soon! Next time we'll be making DIY Shoe Clips, another fun and easy way to give shoes a mini makeover without damaging them. 

Sneak peek! Creating these adorable flowers is easier than it looks.