Double Ian Shoelace Knot

Double Ian Shoelace Knot diagram

By hanging onto the loops and repeating the Ian Knot technique, the result is the more secure Double Ian Shoelace Knot. This is also handy for consuming excess lace to keep the ends from dragging.

Step 1:

Begin with a completed “Ian Knot”

Begin with a completed Ian Knot. Ideally, you'll still be hanging onto the loops. Make sure you have fairly long loops to work with.

Step 2:

Cross loops, left (blue) in front

Repeat steps (3) and (4) of the regular Ian Knot to rotate the loops and cross them over each other. The main difference is that there are no loose ends to which you must pay attention – the loops can be crossed any way you want.

Step 3:

Feed loops through each other

Start to feed one side of each loop through the opposite loop. Again, as neither end is loose, it doesn't really matter which side you choose – although obviously it's easiest to repeat the exact same movement as used in the regular Ian Knot.

Step 4:

Pull tight to complete the knot

Once each hand has a hold of the other side's loop and has let go of its own, pull tight to complete the knot. If done correctly, the second knot will work its way downwards to end up on top of the first knot.

NOTE: It's worth mastering the regular Ian Knot before attempting this variation!

Finished Knot

Finished Double Ian Shoelace Knot

The finished Double Ian Shoelace Knot is quite bulky, which is helpful for consuming excess shoelace to keep the ends from dragging.

Three or more repetitions

Multiple Ian Knots

With plenty of excess lace, the Ian Knot can be repeated as many times as desired. The result is a rather ridiculous looking construction that vaguely resembles a tree fern – a rough, thick “trunk” with two large “fronds” on top. Although novel, it's of little practical value other than for some serious shortening!

Technical Details

Untying the Double Ian Shoelace Knot

The Double Ian Shoelace Knot can usually be untied by simply pulling the ends, especially if the second Ian Knot is tied fairly loosely. However, if tied tightly, this can end up jamming at the last minute, requiring fierce wriggling or resorting to picking apart the second knot.

It's also near impossible to untie three or more repetitions any other way than picking them apart one by one.

Other Uses

I've found that a double or triple Ian Knot is a very quick & efficient way of tying closed the loop handles of plastic shopping bags, which I like to reuse as garbage bags. The loops are exactly like the loops of shoelaces, and two or three repetitions of the Ian Knot is much quicker and easier than the two or three overhand knots that people normally use to tie these bags closed.

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This page last updated: 22-Jul-2021. Copyright © 2004-2021 by Ian W. Fieggen. All rights reserved.

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

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