The term “last” in the context of footwear refers to the mold or shape used to create a shoe during production. The last, which is typically composed of wood, plastic, or another material, creates the shape and fit of the shoe. The last is a crucial component of shoe design and production since it helps to ensure that the shoe fits comfortably. The shape of the last can vary depending on the design of the shoe; some are wider and more rounded, while others are more pointed and small. The intended function of the shoe as well as the preferences of the shoe designer or manufacture will influence the design of last.
Below is a picture of a wooden last used for hand made shoes.