Home » Featured » Turn Lace-Up Shoes to SLIP-ON’s (with Elastic Shoelaces and an Attached Bow)

Turn Lace-Up Shoes to SLIP-ON’s (with Elastic Shoelaces and an Attached Bow)

Let’s talk about little feet. 


And how each and every time you go to the store, go outside to play, head to the park, decide to take a walk around the block, etc……..those little feet need shoes placed around them.  And if the shoes that fit these mentioned little fit are shoes with laces, well, they can become a real pain after tying, double knotting, un-tying, and repeating………27 times a day. (Can you sense a little drama?!!)


Not all of Chloe’s have shoelaces.  In fact, only one pair has laces.  But I find myself trying to find any OTHER pair of shoes to put on her feet EXCEPT the shoelace ones.  Because I’m trying to just hurry and slap some shoes on her.  So, these cute little lace-up shoes weren’t getting any love.


So, I changed that.

And turned them into SLIP-ON SHOES……by creating Elastic Laces with an Attached Bow.





Just pull the tongue, stretch out those elastic laces……….and slip right on. 

(I think Connor (age 4) and Elli (age 6) would love this too.  Especially when they just want to slip something on quickly…….and run right outside.)




Now, little Coco Bug can wear her cute lace-up shoes, even when we’re in a hurry.  Call me lazy……but yeah, this saves me some headache.




I don’t ever have to un-tie those little bows again.  Ever.




And yeah, you could just thread some elastic through the shoelace holes and tie it into a knot and slip onto little feet, etc……….but adding the bow makes them look like they’re really tied.  And so much cuter.




See ya.  We’ve got some playing to do around here.



Want to make some of your own?


First of all, this works for any aged kid.  Especially for those who just get tired of tying and un-tying their shoes. 


Begin by unlacing the shoes.



Then, re-lace with some cord elastic.  (If you’re looking for colored elastic, this used to be one of those elastic headbands that you can buy from WalMart/Target/Etc.  But also, try looking for colored cord elastic at your local fabric store.  Or maybe online??)



Then tighten up the elastic running through the shoelace holes until it’s just tight enough to stay on feet but will also stretch out enough for feet to slide inside.  Tie ends into a knot.



Then, grab a needle and thread and sew the knot in place by sewing it right down to the tongue of the shoe.  (Be sure the tongue is centered and right where it should be when on the foot.)  (Need help with hand stitching?)



Trim off the ends of elastic.



Then, tie your shoelace into a bow to see exactly how big of a bow you’ll need.  Untie the bow and measure exactly how much of the lace the bow used.  Then cut off the two ends of the shoelace (with the pointy ends) to equal the length you needed, plus a 1/4 inch on each piece.  For example, after untying my practice bow, I measured and needed 16 inches of shoelace.  So, I knew I needed 2 pieces that were 8 inches to equal the 16 inches but also added a 1/4 inch to both.  So, the two pieces (with the pointy ends) are both 8 1/4 inches long.



Then, overlap your raw ends by a 1/2 inch and hand stitch in place.  (Need help with hand stitching?)



Tie your lace into a bow and then center it over the elastic knot.  Hide the elastic ends under the bow and hand stitch it in place, sewing right through the tongue of the shoe.  Go up and down, grabbing a little more of the bow each time…..completely securing the bow in place.  (If you’d like, you could also add a little epoxy glue under the bow, for added strength.)



Repeat with the other shoe…….and then voila!!  A pair of Slip-On shoes!!!



Enjoy your headache-free trip to the park!





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  1. Renee says:

    What a cute idea for the little ones! I got my 13 year old son some laces, but they don’t have the bow. They’re called Synch Bands. He loves them and I actually got a pair for myself for my workout shoes. Super comfortable.

  2. Jeremiah says:

    I’m 16 years old and I’m gonna me myself a pair of these!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Gonna make these for myself!

  4. Kristina Noall says:

    We received a pair of like-new toddler Converse–so cute, so stylish (we would never have purchased them, too expensive!), but lace-up!! I was just complaining to my husband, who in the world wants to take four times as long trying to get lace-up shoes on wiggly little feet? I may just go change them RIGHT NOW. :) Thanks for the simple idea!

  5. Oslaine says:

    Very cute shoes, great idea, i love it!!!

  6. Alison Sorensen says:

    I love this idea, I can never get my baby’s shoes to stay on. Such a cute idea too!!!

  7. T. Doyle says:

    I’ve been doing this with my sons’ shoes for years. When he got older I found it worked best if I cut a slit in the tongue and slipped the elastic through it so that the tongue didn’t get pushed into the shoe when they slipped them on. Also, after a while the elastic may get stretched out, but it was pretty easy to tighten it up or replace the elastic.

  8. Raewyn says:

    LOVE IT! My son starts school soon and his uniform requires lace up shoes. No way he can do them yet. This is perfect!

  9. Chris says:

    This is absolutely brilliant!!!! I always find the lace up shoes are way cuter than the velcro ones, but I never buy them because my four year old son can’t tie laces. This will will great for school next year!

  10. Anshu says:

    This is so clever. Since I’m cursing myself for buying laced shoes for my girl…I so needed this tutorial! Thanks Ashley

  11. Shreela says:

    I have occasional lymphadema in my lower leg, so I’m constantly looking for sandals with adjustable straps for both the toe area, as well as around the back for days I can’t fit into “normal shoes”. Winter shoes are clogs. But with your brilliant idea, I bet I’ll be able to adjust tennis shoes to fit me — I haven’t bought tennis shoes in 12 years, thank you SO much!

    PS: I’m thinking nursing home employees would love your idea also ^_^

  12. Mercedes says:

    Dear Ash,

    I cannot believe how big your little girl has gotten already!


  13. Marty says:

    Genius! Where were you when my kids were little? I’ll have to save this idea for my future grandkids!

  14. Gina says:

    As always- super cute- super clever. My girls- even though they are older- will love this.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for sharing this terrific idea, Ashley!

    Tip for finishing ends of elastic so they can’t fray: Singe by holding close to a candle flame for a second or two.

  16. Lisa Kader says:

    Very cute! And can I ask where you got the cute shoes? I would love some for my 6 year old.


    1. Ashley says:

      I bought them at Old Navy several months ago. You never know, maybe they still have some. :)


  17. Kim says:

    Super cute idea! We are going out today to get new shoes and I usually stay away from the lace-ups, but we just might get a pair now! Thanks!

  18. Heidi Gore says:

    I think this is pure GENIUS!! You have surely saved many mothers a lot of time, stress and frustration with this one little tip.

  19. caseyj610 says:

    Cute cute. LOVE the shoes too! What brand are they?

    1. Ashley says:

      I bought them at Old Navy! :)

  20. Elise Arango says:

    Super cute! I think this is an amazing idea!

  21. Amy @ Serving Pink Lemonade says:

    This is genius! I will be using this idea for sure. This will really come in handy with three little kiddos. Thanks for sharing!

  22. Liz J says:

    I think I would wear these too.. hmm but maybe that’s because I am 37 weeks pregnant and I am not wearing lace ups very often.. when I do hubs ties them for me. :)

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh gosh, I totally remember that feeling. I wore flip-flops way more days than a woman should be allowed to wear them! ;)

  23. Lisa says:

    I LOVE this idea! Easy to get on, and my 3-yr-old won’t pull the laces ALL THE WAY OUT every time she sees the shoes.

    1. Ashley says:

      YES, exactly! :)

  24. Paula says:

    Quick, get a patent lawyer! This invention will make you rich!

  25. Elisa Clark says:

    What a great idea! Genius!

  26. Kara K says:

    So sneaky and smart! Wow, I’m amazed by the easiness and my obvious amazement with the small things in life :)

  27. Ann Katrin says:

    I love it! I used to be an Aupair for 4 kids, three of them under the age of 5 so it was a lot of tying shoes everytime we went out. This would have been so good to know! But now I know for my own kids later! Thanks, I love your blog!

    1. Ashley says:

      Yep, you know the headache of trying to get out the door then. :)

  28. Peggy says:

    What a great tutorial. I have a 21 year old autistic son who just can’t figure out how to tie his shoes. He runs on the track team at the high school and with Special Olympics and therefore needs well tied shoes! I usually go to the medical supply store and buy him elastic laces for $10. Thanks for the money saving idea. I’m off to check for cord elastic and headbands!

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh my, this is perfect for him! Glad this may help you out a bit! :)

  29. Becca says:

    Genius! My five-year-old wants a pair of “Chucks” and it’s impossible to find velcro ones in a size 13.

  30. Kathy says:

    That is NOT lazy! It’s PRACTICAL!!! Luckily none of my kids’ shoes have laces yet, but I dread the day when they do!

    1. Ashley says:

      Ha… true! Thanks! :)

  31. Anonymous says:

    What a great idea! I’m tired of trying to find shoes with velcro for my 5 y.o. Now I don’t have to.

  32. Marie says:

    Super cute and absolute genius! Pinning this for later :)

  33. Katie says:

    Yes!! I have triplet daughters who are 21 months old. We’re still in the Velcro sized shoes, but I’ve been dreading moving up to shoelace sizes! Now I know exactly what I’ll do to keep our outings from being quite so stressful. Thanks!

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh gosh, YES! Tripling my agony of putting on shoes to go to the store, the park, outside to play, etc…..would be painful. For sure, whip these up! :)

  34. Lynette says:

    Oh this is wonderful! This could easily work for boys too, because tie ons always have a bow. I just won’t make it a cute one and we’ll be good. :)

    1. Ashley says:

      Yes, I think I’m going to change my little Connor’s shoes. This is just a LOT faster. :)

  35. Melody Benschoter says:

    GENIUS! Truly- this might be life changing!

  36. Tif says:

    Oh my. This might save PE for my newly promoted 2nd grader! She’s got poor fine motor skills and CANNOT learn to tie those shoes but can’t wear slip ons because she also has braces in them. Thanks for the idea and tutorial!

    1. Ashley says:

      Oh good, this is perfect for her then! Good luck! :) -Ashley

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Hi, I'm Ashley

Hi, I’m Ashley—the DIY-enthusiast behind this crazy blog!

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