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How to Keep Toddlers From Untying Shoe Laces

by Kathryn Hatter, studioD

Those little fingers may be more nimble than you think when your toddler gets the hang of untying shoe laces. If you've tied them again today for the 17th time and you're feeling frustrated, it's time to take preventative action. Use handy tricks so your toddler can't untie her shoe laces whenever the thought crosses her mind. Eventually, she'll move on to other great ideas and leave her laces alone.

Tying Trick

Moisten a washcloth lightly with plain water. This isn't rocket science -- just get it damp enough so you can use it to moisten the shoe laces.

Hold out the shoe laces taut between your fingers and the shoes with one hand. With the other hand, wrap the moist washcloth around the laces and pull it over the laces to get them just a smidgen wet. The idea is just to get them wet enough to grip to each other after you tie the shoes.

Tie your tot's shoe laces tightly and then tie them again into a tight double knot. The moist shoe laces should grip to each other tighter after moistening them.

Lace Accessories

Tie the shoes in tight double-knots.

Slip lace lockers or keepers onto the shoe laces, following product instructions. These handy doodads cover the laces and sit right on top of your little one's shoes. They may have character or decorative embellishments for a cute addition to any kid's shoes.

Hype up the cool accessorizing you've done with your kid's shoes. Help him feel stylish and special while his shoes stay neatly tied.

Items you will need
  •  Washcloth or lace lockers


  • Practice the art of distraction when your kid won't leave her laces alone. If you see those fingers reaching for the laces, point out the puppy or the birdie flying in the sky.
  • If you're using lace lockers, it isn't necessary to moisten the laces.


  • The Mom Book; Stacy M. DeBroff

About the Author

Kathryn Hatter is a veteran home-school educator, as well as an accomplished gardener, quilter, crocheter, cook, decorator and digital graphics creator. As a regular contributor to Natural News, many of Hatter's Internet publications focus on natural health and parenting. Hatter has also had publication on home improvement websites such as Redbeacon.

Photo Credits

  • John Foxx/Stockbyte/Getty Images