Named by its Ukrainian inventor, this method has permanently-anchored loose ends plus a "captive" Starting Knot, which saves having to re-tie that first knot each time.
Lacing Technique – Variation 1 – Ends anchored separately at bottom
• Begin straight across on the inside (grey section) and out through the top eyelets.
• Leave a long loop of slack shoelace at each side. These loops will be used to pull the lacing tight and tie the knot, so leave about 100mm (4").
• Tie a left-over-right Starting Knot, then feed the ends in through the next lower eyelets (2nd-from-top).
• Cross the ends and feed in through the next lower eyelets. Repeat until you reach the bottom eyelets.
• At the bottom, tie a stopper knot or use Lace Anchors at each side, locking the ends and stopping them from pulling out of the bottom eyelets.
1 Ends anchored separately at the bottom.
2 Ends tied together across the bottom-middle.
3 Ends tied together across the top-middle.
No loose ends
Fewer steps to tie
Top eyelets loose
+31% longer loops (approx.)
• Variation 1 and 2 both require the shoe to be completely un-laced and then re-laced from top to bottom.
• Variation 3 provides the smoothest transition from a shoe that was previously laced with Criss Cross Lacing. Simply remove the lacing from the top eyelets, tie an overhand Starting Knot across the 2nd-from-top eyelets, feed the ends loosely into the top eyelets, then tie the ends together at the top-middle with a permanent Reef Knot.
• Because this lacing is tied at the 2nd-from-top eyelets, the shoe may feel a little loose at the top eyelets.
• This lacing is not a traditional Ukrainian technique, rather, it is a recent development, patriotically named by its Ukrainian inventor, Vitaliy Gnatenko.
Ukrainian Lacing Theory
The main concept of Ukrainian Lacing is to have a "captive" Starting Knot, which saves the few steps of tying a fresh Starting Knot each time.
In addition, the loose ends are replaced with a similarly "captive" pass through the top eyelets. This looks a bit neater, plus it allows the shoes to be worn while un-tied, as there is no danger of the dangling ends trailing in the dirt or getting stepped on, causing a trip.
Tying The Knot
The pre-formed loops / starting knot require a slightly different tying technique:
1. Tighten the lacing as usual from the bottom to top;
2. At the 2nd-from-top eyelets, tighten down the captive Starting Knot. Take care to tighten down onto the 2nd-from-top eyelets, not onto the top eyelets;
3. Using the two shoelace segments coming out of the knot, tie your preferred Finishing Knot. Again, take care to tighten down onto the 2nd-from-top eyelets, and leave a little slack on the loops that enter the top eyelets – these will be used when it comes time to un-tie the knot.
You can use just about any shoelace knot technique that you prefer. In fact, the pre-formed loops are ideal for tying my Ian Knot, the world's fastest shoelace knot. Ukrainian Lacing + Ian Knot = efficient duo.
Ukrainian Lacing Gallery
New Balance WW925WT walking shoes with Ukrainian Lacing. One shoe shows the captive, loose Starting Knot, the other shows the finished bow.
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Shoelace Lengths for Ukrainian Lacing
|Pairs of eyelets:||2||3||4||5||6||7||8|
|Length needed:||55 cm
Shorter shoelaces needed than those for basic Criss Cross Lacing.
Longer loops if existing shoelaces are re-used (+31% on average).
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