How To Tie Scottish Dance Shoes

Gillies, also known as slippers, are shoes worn by women to perform traditional Scottish dancing. These slippers are similar in style to ballet slippers, but have a distinctive look thanks to the added laces. Because the shoes have open sides, the special-woven “poodle socks”, which are made of woven material, can be seen through. They draw attention to dancers feet while they jump through complicated patterns. Craig Coussins, a shoemaker and dancer recommends a different method of tying the laces. This is not as damaging to the arch as many people do.

The bottom eyelet set is where the laces should be inserted. Once you have reached the top, cross the laces to create an “X” shape between the eyelets. You should tighten your laces to ensure there isn’t any slack between the eyelets.

  • For traditional Scottish dancing, women wear gillies (or shoes).
  • You will need to thread the laces through each eyelet until the upper of your shoe.

The laces should be crossed in front the ankle.

Attach the laces to the eyelets on either side of the shoe.

The laces should be threaded through the loop at the heel. To make sure the shoe is snug, hold the laces in place and pull the laces upward.

  • The laces should be threaded through both the first eyelet and the other side of your shoe.
  • Pass the laces over the loop in the heel.

The laces should be threaded through the eyelets at the top of the shoe. You will see the eyelet on the side of your shoe.

The laces should be pulled tight to create a snug fit around the arch and heel. Secure the laces by making a knot at the top or bottom of your shoe.

To ensure the best fit, have your Scottish dancing shoes fitted by a professional.