Ask dapperQ: Why Do My Pants Get Stuck in the Top of My Shoes?

*Feature image via Trashness

A reader writes:

Have any tips for this problem?

Shoe Laces

My pant legs do reach just above my sole (which is how I prefer them) but they get caught on my shoe laces when I walk. It’s driving my OCD crazy! Any tips are appreciated!

That certainly does look frustrating. So, dapperQ reached out to the experts at Sharpe Suiting, an L.A. based queer-centric masculine dresswear brand, for advice. Here’s what they had to say.

Sharpe1Leon (left) and Vanessa (right). Photo by Jordan Barclay.

Sharpe Suiting Director of Promotions + Styling Vanessa Craig:
Hello fellow dapperQ! Oh my, that pant leg on the right just looks so sad. We understand this dilemma. And, aside from the obvious of trying out a loafer, which could potentially err on the side of “too casual,” I suggest using a bar lace method and tucking the laces under the tongue of the shoe. There are different ways of lacing your shoes so that the knots will not show at all (see tutorials below). In general, this is one way other than tapering the pant leg a bit more, to avoid the dreaded ‘bunch up’ (and any wardrobe meltdowns!), while still looking good with the pant length you desire.

If you tie your shoes with the bar lace method and hide the knot under the tongue, you may also use a smaller length shoelace so that there is less bulk between your foot and the upper part of the shoe tongue. If you leave the inside knot a little loose, your shoes should be easier to slip on. Just tighten them back up before you leave the house! Here is an easy video tutorial (shot with a casual shoe, but also works just fine with a dress shoe if you pull the laces tighter):


More knots and tutorials here:

Sharpe Suiting Co-Founder Leon Wu:
Great question! Shoelaces are so necessary but often can cause the crinkled pant issue.

There a few different ways to deal with unruly shoelaces.

Tailoring Options:

1) Alter the pants so that the front is slightly shorter than the back. Many clients who like their regular fit look and want the pant to hit the top of the sole find this a convenient solution.

2) Tailor the pant to a slim fit/tapered look.

Quick Fixes:

3) Tucking shoelaces into the shoe. (Leon Wu’s go-to method.)

4) Tie your dress shoes so the laces lay flat against the shoe horizontally instead of vertically. This minimizes the “catching” of the fabric you can see in the photo. A great resource for a perfectly tied shoe can be found on Professor Shoelace’s awesome (and incredibly thorough) website.

Sharpe Suiting 411:

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1 Comment

  • So what can you do if the back of your pant leg keeps getting stuck between the heel of the shoe and your heel? Almost everytime I stand up or lift my leg just high enough for the back of my pant leg to jam itself between my heel and the heel of my shoe. I have 1 pair of shoes, adidas campus. but has also happened in the past while wearing different shoes. And I have gotten pants fitted and the length altered up a dozen times on several different pants over the years. I know getting different pair of shoes might solve problem but my love of these shoes make this next to impossible for me. Any suggestions? It’s gotten to the point where its effecting my daily life as it makes me not want to leave the house because every other step I am looking down and around the back of my pant leg to check if its stuck or not.

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