Quick and easy: Shoelaces

I recently, finally, retired my Games Maker trainers. Although I was selected as a Games Maker in the Venue Protocol Team (Copper Box) for both the Olympics and Paralympics in London 2012, I broke my leg on the 30th June, and didn’t make it to the games (it was early September before I was anything like fully mobile again, but because I was immediately post-op the Paralympics remained off-limits). Nonetheless, I’ve worn the trainers for years. They were the only shoes comfortable when my leg was healing, and I love wearing them, but to avoid wearing them out I’ve decided to retire them.

I couldn’t find any I really loved to replace them. The Vans/Liberty collection are lovely but a bit fussier than I like for everyday. In the end I opted for a really cheap-and-cheerful pair of boys’ trainers from Tesco (£4 on sale after Christmas). I wasted a lot of time looking for fun, silly or decorative shoe laces but they all seemed expensive and not quite right.

Finished laces

The Now That’s Pretty shoelace tutorial was an epiphany! I dug around in my craft box (I’m really trying not to buy materials if I don’t need to) and found 2.1m of gold satin ribbon, 20mm wide. Gold isn’t a colour I usually use, but I wanted a quick craft fix and our lovely local Haberdasher is sadly not open 24 hours, so I cut it into 2 lengths, sealed the ends with a gas lighter, and followed the instructions on Ally’s blog. My gold glittery nail polish (bought to make green-and-gold nails for Aylesbury Concert Band gigs) sealed the tops.

Before and after:
F&F trainers

After seeing them on the trainers, it all looked a bit incongruous. I had just bought a lovely pair of ‘vintage’ (nineties?) Marks and Spencer boots from my local Cancer Research UK shop, and I tried the laces in them. They are perfect together.

If I were to go ahead and make these again, there are a few alterations I would make to my version:

  • I would ruche the top of the laces tighter.
  • I would use clear sellotape instead of Scotch Tape, to make a slightly sharper finish.
It took about 45 minutes to do both (I’m quite slow, you could probably do it faster!) and I will definitely make more ribbon laces, it’s a great way to add some glam to a boring pair of shoes. They feel just a bit more ‘me’.