L is for Last

November 25, 2022

A last is the model that shoes are made on.

The term “last” refers to a three-dimensional mold or form used in the footwear manufacturing process. It serves as a template or model around which shoes are constructed. The last determines the size, shape, and fit of the shoe. Here are some key points about the use of lasts in shoemaking:

  1. Size and Fit: Lasts are available in various sizes and shapes to accommodate different foot sizes and arch types. They are designed to replicate the contours of the human foot, providing a foundation for creating well-fitting shoes.
  2. Pattern Development: Lasts are used to develop shoe patterns. Shoemakers or designers use the last as a basis for creating paper or digital patterns that will be used to cut the shoe materials, such as leather or fabric.
  3. Shoe Construction: The last plays a crucial role in shoe construction. The upper material of the shoe is stretched and shaped around the last, allowing the shoe to take its final form. The lasting process involves attaching the upper to the sole and securing it using stitching, glue, or other techniques.
  4. Comfort and Functionality: The last influences the comfort and functionality of the shoe. It determines factors such as the toe shape, arch support, heel height, and overall fit. A well-designed last can contribute to a comfortable and supportive shoe, while an ill-fitting last can lead to discomfort and foot-related problems.
  5. Customization: Lasts can be customized to cater to specific needs or preferences. For example, orthopedic shoes may require specially designed lasts to accommodate foot conditions or provide additional support.

It’s worth noting that lasts are typically made from durable materials such as wood, plastic, or metal. They are designed to withstand the shaping and construction processes involved in shoemaking.


Comments are closed.