Foot Girth Measurements for Bespoke and Custom Shoe Lasts

Foot girth measurements are an essential input for creating bespoke and custom shoe lasts. This page is a guide on measuring the foot girths that are necessary for ordering custom and bespoke shoe lasts from us.

We always measure foot girths while the foot is semi-weightbearing (seated position). It’s possible to measure your own foot, but we highly recommend having someone else do it. We use a tailor tape, which is a soft measuring tape most often used by tailors. For each girth measurement, the measuring tape will loop around the foot and the end can be pinned in place with a finger or thumb as the measurement is read in mm. Please note that the measurements are taken barefoot (the intended type of socks are accounted for elsewhere).

Ball Girth: Run the tape measure in a loop passing through the sides of the first and fifth ball joints. The loop should follow the shortest path through these two points.


Instep Girth: Palpate for the middle cuneiform prominence (bony ridge on the dorsal surface of the foot). We’ll call this the Instep Point. Run the tape measure in a loop through the Instep Point and around the plantar surface of the foot. The loop should follow the shortest path that passes through the Instep Point.

Waist Girth: Waist girth is measured halfway between the ball girth and instep girth measurements (the plane of measurement is averaged).


Ankle Girth: The Ankle Girth is measured horizontally around the ankle at the height of the center of the inside ankle bone (medial malleolus). In addition to the girth measurement itself, we also need to know the height at which the measurement was taken (Medial Malleolus Height). For this, simply use the tailor tape to measure the vertical distance from the ground to the medial malleolus.

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