Straight Easy Lacing

This is a simplified variation of Straight Bar Lacing where one end runs straight from bottom to top while the other end steps through the eyelets.

Diagram for 8 pairs of eyelets

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Lacing Technique

• Begin straight across on the outside (grey section) and in through the bottom eyelets.

• The left (blue) end runs all the way up the inside and out through the top left eyelet.

• The right (yellow) end runs straight up on the inside and out through the next higher eyelet, then straight across on the outside and in through the adjacent eyelet on the other side. Repeat until the end reaches the top right eyelet.


Even no. of eyelets = neat

Odd no. of eyelets = messy

End lengths shift

28% longer ends (approx.)


Straight Easy Lacing only works correctly on shoes with even numbers of eyelet pairs (eg. 8 pairs = 16 eyelets). This is because the lace must cross the shoe an even number of times so that the ends will meet and can be tied together. On shoes with an odd number of eyelet pairs (eg. 7 pairs = 14 eyelets), the lace ends finish diagonally opposite each other at the top of the shoe.

See below for some workarounds for shoes with odd numbers of eyelet pairs.

Sports / Military Advice:

Like other straight lacing methods, Straight Easy Lacing has an additional benefit for sporting or military use: The upper horizontal sections of shoelace can be quickly cut through with a knife or scissors in order to more easily remove a boot from a broken, sprained or otherwise injured ankle or foot.

Note that most military forces have regulations for just about everything, so I'd recommend that military personnel check before they adopt this, or any other, possible non-regulation lacing method!

Shoelace Lengths for Straight Easy Lacing

Pairs of eyelets: 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Length needed: 63 cm
25 inch
(N/A) 80 cm
31 inch
(N/A) 96 cm
38 inch
(N/A) 112 cm
44 inch
Lengths available: 27" 27" 36" 45"

NOTE: These are approximate shoelace lengths for using this lacing on an average sized sneaker. For more accurate lengths, use the Shoelace Length Calculator.

Comparative Length

Shorter shoelaces needed than those for basic Criss Cross Lacing.

Longer ends if existing shoelaces are re-used (+28% on average).

More details.

Odd Workarounds

As mentioned above, Straight Easy Lacing only works correctly on shoes with even numbers of eyelet pairs. Here's several common workarounds for shoes with odd numbers of eyelet pairs, using sample diagrams with seven pairs of eyelets.

Straight Easy Lacing Odd Workaround 1

Ends Tucked In

Firstly, you can accept the fact that the lace ends don't meet and simply tuck them into the shoe.

For a tighter fit, you could also knot each lace end so that they don't pull through the eyelets, then tuck them in. However, those knots can feel uncomfortable.

Straight Easy Lacing Odd Workaround 2

Skip One Eyelet Pair

Another solution is to simply not use either the top or the bottom pair of eyelets. This avoids the odd limitation by using only an even number of the available eyelet pairs.

It's also possible to skip a pair of eyelets somewhere in the middle, which breaks the lacing into two sections.

Straight Easy Lacing Odd Workaround 3

One Diagonal

Use a single diagonal pass somewhere in the lacing. At the top, it's less noticeable due to the bows and shoelace ends. At the bottom, you can even run the diagonal around the inside of the tongue, making it invisible at the expense of some slight discomfort. Near the middle of the lacing, a diagonal may be positioned to line up with and run through a tongue centering loop (if the shoe has one).

Straight Easy Lacing Odd Workaround 4

One Crossover

Instead of trying to hide a single diagonal, this alternative makes a feature out of a single crossover, similar to the look of Over Under Lacing. This crossover can be placed at either the top or bottom of the lacing, but unlike the above "One Diagonal" variation, it cannot be placed in the middle of the lacing.

Straight Easy Lacing Odd Workaround 5

Across and Back

The second from bottom straight section runs across right-to-left (on top), then left-to-right (underneath), passing under itself on the right side. The underlying section is fairly well hidden by the straight section on top.

This is the preferred method for dress shoes with three pairs of eyelets, with the lacing running across and back under the middle pair of eyelets.

Straight Easy Lacing Odd Workaround 6

Twice Through Top Eyelet

The end that runs straight up the left side (blue end) and the end that snakes left and right through all the remaining eyelets (yellow end) both emerge through the top left eyelet. One of those ends then runs straight across and out through the top right eyelet.

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