The mold geometry and its thermal properties greatly influence the solidification process. Finite element simulations of directional solidification in various molds are presented. These simulations were performed using volume averaged properties in the mushy zone in order to model the convection, transport of solute and energy, and phase change occurring during solidification. These simulations show the interactions of the mold and alloy with the resultant solidification phenomena, including steepling. Mold geometries can cause macrosegregation because of shrinkage flows, by interrupting the development of the mushy zone, and by causing or influencing thermosolutal convection. Mold materials with different thermal properties result in different macrosegregation patterns even for the same geometries. Changes in cross section and the thermal properties of the mold also affect the gradients and solidification rates obtained in the alloy, as opposed to those measured on the mold wall. Simulations are compared qualitatively to a verification experiment of directionally solidifying a hypoeutectic Al-7wt%Si alloy in a mold with changing cross sections.