Not to sound too much like ICP, but shoelaces are pretty fucking amazing. If I had to come up with a method for attaching leather to my feet, I'm pretty sure it wouldn't be as elegant as the shoelace. I'm envisioning all sorts of straps and individual loops of string - a total mess. Even if I did come around to a single cord, I doubt I'd be smart enough to tie it in a bow. I'd be hacking the knot open with a flint sherd every night.