Have you ever wondered how many ways are there to tie shoe laces? The answer is: lots of them! While the standard method of tying a basic knot is probably the most common, there are actually a variety of different knots that can be used for different purposes.

For example, certain types of knots are purely decorative. Others serve more functional purposes, such as keeping laces extra tight and secure. There are knots that improve lacing speed, which can be helpful if you need to loosen or tighten your shoes throughout the day.

So, next time you're looking to mix up your shoe game, why not try out a different way of tying your laces? You might be surprised at how much of a difference it can make!


Regular ways to tie shoe laces

These "basic" knots are suitable for most types of shoes. They're ideal when you need a quick and easy way to tie shoe laces.

  • Standard knot. Probably the most common knot for tying shoe laces. After tying a basic knot in the middle of the shoe, make a loop with one of the laces. Then, wrap the other lace around the loop and pull it through the hole.
  • Bunny ears knot. After tying a basic knot, make two loops with both ends of the laces. Then tie a knot with them. Easier than the previous technique, but less secure.
  • Ian Knot. Created by Ian Fieggen, it's considered the fastest way to tie shoe laces. It allows to form a "standard" knot in half the time. An Ian Knot is realised by making a loop with both ends and pulling them through each other at the same time.


Secure ways to tie shoe laces

Extra secure knots are used when it's important to keep the shoes safely tied at all times, for instance while trekking in the wilderness or playing sports.

  • Double knot. The most common way to make a knot more secure, or shorten hanging shoe laces. Start with a standard knot, then take the finished loops and tie a half knot with them.
  • Surgeon's knot. Another common way to tie shoe laces in a "secure" way. Start with a standard knot, but before pulling tight, run the loop around and through the middle for a second time.
  • There are also several secure (and fast to tie) variations on the Ian knot, including the Double Ian Knot and Mega Ian Knot.


Decorative and special purpose ways to tie shoe laces

These knots are used for specific purposes, or just because they look good!

  • Moccasin knot. Two loops are crossed at the middle, then secured with a half knot. This knot is used for moccasins and similar shoes. It's solely decorative and doesn't hold tight.
  • Reef knot. This knot consists of a standard knot tied without the loops. It is a useful way to tie very short shoe laces - for example, after one shoe lace has broken.
  • Boat shoe knot. A way to create decorative coils. Each shoe lace is coiled around itself instead of being tied.


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