Corset Lacing

Lacing (pic)

Traditional lacing for corsets in which the laces can be gripped and pulled very tightly via the middle loops. Effective – but looks unusual.

Eight pairs of eyelets

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Lacing Technique

• Begin straight across on the outside (grey section) and in through the top eyelets. (See also Notes below.)

• At each eyelet pair, alternate between crossing under (on the inside) and out through the next lower set of eyelets or crossing over (on the outside) and in through the next lower set of eyelets until the ends emerge from the eyelets just above the middle of the shoe.

• The ends are run straight down on the outside to the next lower set of eyelets, leaving a long loop of slack shoelace at each side. These loops will be used to pull the lacing tight and tie the knot, so leave about 250mm (10").

• For the lower part of the shoe, once again alternate between crossing under (on the inside) or over (on the outside) until the ends reach the bottom of the shoe.

• Tie the ends together using a Reef Knot or other permanent knot.


Extra tightening

Unusual look

Messy knot

“Shortens” ends


• Depending on the number of eyelet pairs (eg. 6 or 7 pairs), you may need to start with the top (grey section) on the inside in order for the lace ends to emerge through the middle eyelets.

• The lacing forms one long, continuous circuit of shoelace with two hanging loops. The extra grip of the fingers of each hand inside those closed loops allows very firm tightening.

• When tying the knot, each loop is held closed as though it is a double-thickness end of a single shoelace. The completed bow will have two single-loops and two double-loops. The single-loops perform the same function as the loose ends of a regular shoelace knot, and it is those single-loops that are pulled to untie the knot.

• This lacing usually requires longer replacement shoelaces because the doubled loops require more length than would be available using the original shoelaces.

Shoe lacing photo

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Shoelace Lengths for Corset Lacing

Pairs of
length needed
ends by
8 pairs188 cm74 in–27.5 cm–10.8 in
7 pairs178 cm70 in–27.5 cm–10.8 in
6 pairs167 cm66 in–27.5 cm–10.8 in
5 pairs157 cm62 in–27.5 cm–10.8 in
4 pairs146 cm58 in–27.5 cm–10.8 in
3 pairs136 cm54 in–27.5 cm–10.8 in
2 pairs125 cm49 in–27.5 cm–10.8 in

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

MUCH longer shoelaces needed than those for basic Criss Cross Lacing.

• If the original shoelaces are re-used, this method effectively shortens the ends substantially.

The significant difference is due to the two long tightening loops, which result in a bow made of doubled segments. This typically means that the original shoelaces won't be long enough.

More details about length comparisons.

Visitor Feedback

I have one pair of shoes AND my skates laced up with the Corset Lacing, which work WONDERFULLY, especially for the skates, tremendous lacing method for skates!

– J.D. F., Apr-2022

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This page last updated: 09-Apr-2024. Copyright © 2014-2024 by Ian W. Fieggen. All rights reserved.

Website created by Ian Fieggen (aka. “Professor Shoelace”), inventor of the Ian Knot.

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