The foundation stone upon which all footwear is built is the last. This is the foot shape around which the upper is formed. Every bootmaker develops his own lasts... They are formed from his experience... They are each unique... they are his signature.
I made my first last over 40 years ago. I was fortunate to work with the Shepherd family - William Shepherd was the Senior Bootmaker. He was 62 years old when I first worked with him. In the factory he was always referred to as 'the old man' - he'd started making boots and shoes in the late 1920's, and back then, the term 'old man' was a sign of respect...
During 2006 I decided to develop a new boot last for a footshape that had different characteristics to the most commonly occurring footshape covered by our existing 5 width fitting boot lasts.
I'd begun calling this different foot shape the 'asymmetric foot', and I started to make a boot last with an asymmetric running shoe toe shape. This was how the development of the A-Forme last began.
The Alt Berg Senior Bootmaker