Try Our Apps
Dictionary.com

follow Dictionary.com

The Best Internet Slang

shoestring

[shoo-string] /ˈʃuˌstrɪŋ/
noun
1.
a shoelace.
2.
a very small amount of money.
3.
shoestrings, shoestring potatoes.
adjective
4.
consisting of or characterized by a small amount of money:
living on a shoestring budget.
Origin of shoestring
1610-1620
First recorded in 1610-20; shoe + string
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
Cite This Source
Examples from the Web for shoe-string
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He heard, and, loosening his shoe-string, drew a shoe from his foot and looked at the sole.

    Eric Brighteyes H. Rider Haggard
  • She was speechless, because she had just crammed an entire licorice 'shoe-string' into her mouth.

    Atlantic Narratives Mary Antin
  • To the length of his shoe-string and the color of his doublet.

    Sir Christopher Maud Wilder Goodwin
  • Clarke had saved the game for Pittsburg in the sixth inning by a shoe-string.

    Pitching in a Pinch Christy Mathewson
  • Say, didn't you never have to tie up your hair with a shoe-string?

    The Portion of Labor Mary E. Wilkins Freeman
  • I never bought nothin' new for any of my feet, not even a shoe-string.

  • He'll be king of the shoe-string peddlers—the walking delegate of the Hobos' Union!

    The Pot Boiler Upton Sinclair
  • He was fond of noting types, and of watching the sandwich-men, beggars, and shoe-string venders.

    The Short Line War Samuel Merwin
British Dictionary definitions for shoe-string

shoestring

/ˈʃuːˌstrɪŋ/
noun
1.
another word for shoelace
2.
(informal)
  1. a very small or petty amount of money (esp in the phrase on a shoestring)
  2. (as modifier): a shoestring budget
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for shoe-string
n.

1610s, from shoe (n.) + string (n.). As figurative for "a small amount" it is recorded from 1882; as a type of necktie, from 1903; as a style of cooked potatoes from 1906.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Slang definitions & phrases for shoe-string

shoestring

adjective

Tight; low-cost: shoestring budget

The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
Cite This Source
Idioms and Phrases with shoe-string

shoestring

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for shoestring

Few English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for shoe

7
6
Scrabble Words With Friends

Nearby words for shoe-string