How to Lace Dress Shoes

How to Lace Dress Shoes
You can always judge a gentleman by his shoes - as the saying goes. So if it's true, you need to make sure you are lacing your dress shoes right, and more importantly for the right shoe. Here at Idle HQ we have devised the definitive guide on how to lace your dress shoes - and to guarantee you're making the best first impression. Read more Men's Style Guides features and check out our Store. toppicks From the amount of use we get out of our laces, we never consider how much wear they go through compared to the shoe itself. Although they seem they can last a lifetime, it never hurts to change them up, mix them up and try something new. However, when we do reach the time to change our beloved laces, we need to remember a lace can dramatically change a shoe, to how it fits, sits and its appearance. From flat laces, dress laces, boot laces and round laces, there is a wide range to choose from when it comes to dress shoe lacing. So if you own a pair of brogues, derbies or Oxford's, we've got you covered from the eyelet to the aglet. Just so you don't have to, we have broken down on how to lace or tie your dress shoes the right way.

How to Lace Dress Shoes for Men

The type and length of your lace will always be a rudimentary aspect for any smart shoe. Smart shoes have tough and careful construction - so having the right lace can make the whole lot of difference in comfort and tieing. We always recommend the lace for your shoes to be between 31 - 80cm in length, especially if you are wanting to fill up to 6 rows of eyelets on a shoe. Depending on what type of shoe you go for, the actual method of lacing is a whole different story.
brogue how to lace shoes
PHOTO CREDIT: Shoe Gazing
toppicks For smart shoes, you always have the option to choose between three types of lace to play around with. Introducing the flat shoe lace, the dress boot lace and lastly the round lace, each to their own, they can make the whole lot of difference to your shoe and wear.

How to Tie Dress Shoes

There are a number of dress shoe laces out there for you to choose from. but picking the right ones for you and knowing how to lace a dress shoe can be difficult to narrow down. It may sound strange, but they're different laces for different shoes for different occasion, so it's about time you narrowed it down to find the right ones for you.

Flat Shoe Laces

The boldest of the pack are the flat shoe laces. Also recognised as flat thin dress lace shoes, they are wider in width as compared to dress boot and round. They can change a shoes delicacy design dramatically, so a simple shoe such as a Derby will you be your best protocol.
flat lace how to lace dress shoes
PHOTO CREDIT: Gentlemen's Gazette
Durable, robust and do the job perfectly. Dress Boot laces are built to last, and to be worn with, well, boots. From work boots to smart boots, dress boot laces will never let you down in discomfort and quality. With a similar design to the flat shoe laces, when opting for boot laces always go for that extra bit of length. When  partnering with larger boots with 6 rows of eyelets or more, remember to go for a length between 41 - 120cm. However, when it comes to classic chukka boots you can still go for the 31 - 80cm length, which should reach you up to 6 rows of eyelets.

Round Laces

If you are wanting to go for quality, then the round laces are your best call. Opted mainly for brogues and Oxford shoes laces, round laces are the longest lasting out of the trio. Made from wax, the best quality round laces are strangely always the thinnest. Easy to thread through the eyelets without breaking apart, round laces always bring clean-cut detail to any shoe.
mens brown brogues street style
PHOTO CREDIT: Trend Style
Always remember, not everything is perfect especially when it comes to tying dress sheos. Although the round lace can be considered the strongest going for poor quality can lead to fraying of ends, especially after repetitive use. So invest in a good couple of pairs, and we promise they will last you a lifetime.

Dress Shoes for Men

Shoes will always be the statement item to any smart outfit. From suits to smart trousers, shoes always hold the opportunity to experiment with colour, detail, and design. Although shoes can sometimes be an afterthought when putting our perfected suit together, we forget they can change an overall look dramatically. Never fear - as we have nailed down the dress shoes that you need in your wardrobe and exactly how to lace them, of course.
hudson heyford hi shine black
Hudson - Shoes
£119

Brogue & Oxford for Men

Easy to transition through smart casual to formal, Brogues are the ultimate go-to dress shoe which is an essential your shoe closet. Recognised for their decorative design, Brogues and Oxford shoes bring the detail to any simple suit and shirt. toppicks Constructed with multiple pieces which are carefully decorated, known as broguing, they have shaped to become a timeless shoe for any modern man. Where you end up wearing them is up to you. If you are opting for a smart, laid back look, go for the standard brogue. Partner with your essential smart trouser or chino, to create a chic edge to your outfit. Brogues come in a variety of toe caps, so there is always a pair to suit any shaped trouser. However, when going for a formal look, opt for the Oxford shoe. The smartest form of the brogue, the Oxford is uncomplicated by design, providing more of a cleaner cut, defined edge to your outfit.

How to Lace the Brogue and Oxford Shoe

As the shoe is heavily detailed, go for the simple even bar lace. This will hopefully not draw too much attention of the brogue itself.
mens-brogue-shoes
PHOTO CREDIT: Pinterest
Method: Bar Lace (Even) Lace: Round Lace Difficulty: Easy
  1. Grab both ends of the lace, making the length is between 31 and 80cm.
  2. Thread both ends of the lace at the first row of eyelets of the shoe, from outside-in.
  3. Starting with the left end of the lace (shoe front facing opposite), thread through the eyelet, two rows up from the original.
  4. Then with the right end of the lace, thread the lace through the eyelet one up on the same side.
  5. Once each of the ends of the lace is threaded through their second eyelet, you can begin threading through the opposite sides, and watch the lace take shape.
  6. With the right end of the lace, thread the lace across to the direct opposite eyelet on the left.
  7. With the left side of the lace, do the exactly the same. You should slowly see the bar lace take place.
  8. Repeat the method, but make sure you thread each side of the lace two eyelets above from the original.
  9. Carry on until you reach the top of the shoe.
how to lace dress shoes for men
PHOTO CREDIT: The Combatant Gentlemen

Derby & Blucher Shoes for Men

From heavily detailed to minimalist, Derby  and Blucher shoes are the best of both worlds. Still giving you that formal edge, but without the detail, the Derby and Blucher shoe sis the perfect inbetween shoe to own for an occasion. toppicks The design construction is simple and typically associated with a Cap or plain toe finished with a slim foot design. With an open-lace front, any round and flat lace can cater for this shoe. As the shoe is refined and a classic, make sure you go for laces which live up to their quality.

How to Lace Derby & Blucher Shoes

As the shoe design is relatively simple, with an open lace, opt for the bar lace, with an odd finishing lace. This can add elevated detail to your shoe and reduce discomfort around the tongue and front of the shoe.
black derby shoes mens street style
PHOTO CREDIT: Mr Hare
Method: Bar Lace (Odd) Lace: Round Lace Difficulty: Easy
  1. Grab both ends of the lace, making the length is between 31 and 80cm.
  2. Thread both ends of the lace at the first row of eyelets of the shoe, from outside-in.
  3. Starting with the left end of the lace (shoe front facing opposite), thread through the eyelet, two rows up from the original.
  4. Then with the right end of the lace, thread the lace through the eyelet one up on the same side.
  5. Once each of the ends of the lace is threaded through their second eyelet, you can begin threading through the opposite sides, and watch the lace take shape.
  6. With the right end of the lace, thread the lace across to the direct opposite eyelet on the left.
  7. With the left side of the lace, do the exactly the same. You should slowly see the bar lace take place.
  8. Repeat the method, but make sure you thread each side of the lace two eyelets above from the original.
  9. Once you are nearly at the tongue of the shoe with one eyelet to go, with either of the sides, thread the lace to the one-up, opposite eyelet, creating a cross effect.
  10. Then thread the opposite lace directly through the eyelet one-up.
how to lace dress shoes for men
PHOTO CREDIT: The Combatant Gentlemen

History of the Shoelace

No one can exactly narrow down the date to when laces became an essential to all our shoes. However, with the first shoes landing on our grounds in 3000BC, we can all assume the first ever lace was created as well. Built for comfort and to prevent injury, shoes are no longer just about functionality, but to also make a statement. Without the shoelace majority of our favourite shoes such as trainers, boots and lace-ups wouldn't be possible.
hudson heyford calf brown
Hudson - Shoes
£119
The lace phenomenon began with the Areni-1, dating back to 3500BC. With eyelets and a leather lace, the Areni-1 is known to be the first shoe to include laces within its design for function and comfort. From Ötzi the Iceman to Gurka soldiers, laces have proven to be one of the most useful simple inventions in history. They have revolutionised in time but have still kept to the traditional methods of making, such as hemp, cotton, and leather - seen in alot of smart/dress shoes today.

How to Lace Dress Shoes

  • Experiment with your laces depending on your outfit - especially if you are wearing a clean-cut suit.
  • The more detailed the shoe the simpler the lace should be, so consider this when choosing type of lace and method.
  • It's one of the easiest and time-friendly ways to switch up minor details for an outfit.
  • Reversible and kind to the bank account, switching up your laces it's one of the cost-effective ways to elevate your outfit.
how to lace dress shoes for men
PHOTO CREDIT: Business Insider
toppicks

On That Note

Formal shoes are always an essential to every modern man's wardrobe. While there is a variety of styles and colours out there, mixing up the laces will also be a timeless detail. Rather than just an asset for the comfort, laces can switch your old pair of brogues right around, giving them a whole new life in a matter of minutes. So if you are stuck on how to tie and lace dress shoe laces, then this handy guide will tell you everything you need to knThe latest news from style, life, arts, and culture and everything in between. Whether it's a new brand arriving into our style, our latest drops and editorials. You will never miss a beat with us.

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