Monday, 16 September 2013

Tartan ribbon shoelaces tutorial

When I first bought my Docs I contemplated changing the colour of the laces, just to be interesting. I considered red because that's the colour I wear most, but I found out that red laces used to mean to some people that the wearer had killed someone. Which is just not what I want.

I was shopping with my friends when we saw a newly-opened Doc Martens shop, so we went outside to goggle at the beautiful boots and not buy anything. But I didn't come out the doors with nothing. One of the boots on display was laced with tartan shoelaces. I love tartan. I love ribbons. Tartan ribbon shoelaces would be perfect for my boots!

Ribbon shoelaces are so easy to make and look awesome. Keep scrolling down to see them in my boots.

You will need:
  • tape measure
  • tartan ribbon, about 15mm wide
  • scissors
  • thread
  • clear nail polish

Before you embark on your ribbon-obtaining mission, first unlace the shoes you want your ribbon laces on and measure how long the original laces are with the tape measure. For my fourteen-eyelet boots I needed 4m of ribbon, so that's 2m for each boot. It was 45p/m from the haberdashery at my local indoor market.

Take a length of thread around 30cm long and fold it in half, then in half again. Roll up the end of one of your ribbons as tight as you can lengthways, ready to be wrapped into an aglet. Now follow the instructions from Ian's Shoelace Site to wrap the string around the end of the ribbon. At a glance it seems quite complicated but if you just read it and understand it, you'll have no problems at all. To keep the ribbon taut, pin down the other end of the ribbon under your knee.

Cut off your loose ends and trim the end of the ribbon if needed. Coat in a generous layer of the clear nail polish, and repeat the process on the other three ribbon ends. Once the nail polish has dried, the aglets will be quite hard, and it will become super easy to lace up your boots with them.

I really think the big bows look really cute, especially on my chunky, manly Doc Martens. I even picked a tartan design with a little yellow in it to match the Docs' trademark yellow stitching.


  1. These look so cool! I kind of want to do it for all my shoes now xo

    1. Found some red tartan ribbon reduced to 25p/m and bought craploads of it, muahahahahahah. Gonna make loads of laces now.

  2. So cool! I never thought making shoelaces is so easy :) Will definitely try this out

    1. When you do, make sure you show me because I would love to see <3

  3. Such a simple and effective idea!

  4. I love this! I have a real chunky pair of boots that this would work well on. Thanks for the tutorial. And I love your laces!!! :)

    1. Thanks! Ribbon shoelaces look best on chunkier boots or else the boots get overwhelmed.


Thank you ♥

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