Dense Checker Lacing

Dense Checker Lacing

Variation of Checkerboard Lacing with doubled horizontals of one color through which another color shoelace is woven vertically, forming a more dense two-color checker pattern.

Diagram for 8 pairs of eyelets

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Lacing Technique

• Start with two pairs of different color shoelaces, preferably the wide, flat variety.

• With one color (orange in my diagram), begin on the inside with the ends emerging through the bottom-left eyelet and the next higher eyelet.

• Both ends run straight across the outside and in through the adjacent eyelets, then run straight up the inside and out through the next higher eyelets.

• Continue up the shoe, running both ends straight across the outside and then straight up the inside. NOTE: At each horizontal pass, the lower of the two horizontal shoelace segments will be feeding through eyelets already occupied by the higher segment of the previous pass.

• At the top of the shoe, simply tuck in the loose ends. This completes the first color (orange).

• With the second color (purple in my diagram), begin with one end tucked into the bottom left of the shoe. Run the shoelace straight up, weaving in and out of the other shoelace until you reach the top.

• Fold around the top lace and head back down, weaving in and out until you reach the bottom.

• Continue across the shoe, weaving up and down until you are out of room or out of shoelace, whichever comes first.

• Tuck the final loose end into the shoe. This can be at either the top or the bottom, depending on the number of vertical passes.


Decorative look

Slip-on or off

Loose fit

2% longer ends (approx.) (horizontal sections)


• Looks best when laced with wide, flat shoelaces.

• When completed, this lacing forms a sort of loose, springy weave that does not bind strongly. It's designed for wide-fronted sneakers that people usually wear loose with the laces either dragging or tucked in. Sort of like a trendy slip-on.

• For a slightly tighter fit, use wider or rougher laces to increase friction and thus retain more tension.

• For greater security, at the top of the shoe the ends can instead be tied together on the inside or anchored separately with simple stopper knots or using Lace Anchors.

• If the checkerboard weave is only done up to the second eyelets from the top – leaving the top row free – the ends (orange) can be adjusted so that a normal shoelace knot can be tied across the top two eyelets.

• For a different look, use a single long shoelace of one color instead of two different shoelaces. After completing the horizontal sections, use the same shoelace to weave the vertical sections. The result is a single color woven mat with checkerboard texture but without the checkerboard colors.

Shoelace Lengths for Dense Checker Lacing

Pairs of eyelets: 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Length needed for horizontal lace: 32 cm
12 inch
45 cm
18 inch
58 cm
23 inch
71 cm
28 inch
84 cm
33 inch
98 cm
38 inch
111 cm
44 inch
Lengths available: 27" 27" 27" 27" 36" 36" 40"
Length needed for 4 vertical passes: 27 cm
11 inch
33 cm
13 inch
40 cm
16 inch
47 cm
18 inch
54 cm
21 inch
60 cm
24 inch
67 cm
26 inch
Length needed for 6 vertical passes: 30 cm
12 inch
40 cm
16 inch
50 cm
20 inch
60 cm
24 inch
70 cm
28 inch
80 cm
32 inch
91 cm
36 inch
Length needed for 8 vertical passes: 33 cm
13 inch
47 cm
18 inch
60 cm
24 inch
74 cm
29 inch
87 cm
34 inch
101 cm
40 inch
114 cm
45 inch

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 supplied with the shoes.

Longer ends if existing shoelaces are re-used (+2% on average).

More details.

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This page last updated: 04-Sep-2022. Copyright © 2004-2022 by Ian W. Fieggen. All rights reserved.

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