What’s In A Font

I am a self-proclaimed font addict. Seeking out a new and fabulous font is one of my favorite things to do. The right font on an invitation or personalized gift can make or break it, and by the same token the wrong one can kill it.

So what makes a font right or wrong? Fonts like most things in design are subjective. What looks perfect to one person looks awful to another. Let’s call that my disclaimer as I move forward. Because as a self-proclaimed font addict and more importantly as a designer, there are some simple rights and wrongs to choosing fonts.

The first thing to consider when choosing a font is what are you using the font for? Are you having a casual birthday party for a 5 year old? Consider something fun and whimsical and stay away from formal scripts. A formal script on this type of invitation would be akin to wearing a cocktail dress to a swim party. Just isn’t going to work.

Are you having a formal event? Need a gorgeous script to help set the stage for your party? Think less is more. Pairing a loopy, calligraphy-inspired font with a simple block is always classy. It helps certain words to stand out but the pairing with the block font makes it elegant and just as importantly, easy for your guests to read. Keep the block simple and clean.

I mentioned above using a combination of fonts for a formal invitation. The right combination of fonts can be gorgeous…and the wrong can be hideous. Less is definitely more when working with fonts. Think two and to push the envelope three fonts. But absolutely, positively no more than three. In choosing those two fonts think of pairing something with personality with classic and simple. That will give just the look that you need. And never pair two scripts together. That hurts just thinking about it.

So this goes on about fonts, but where to find them? I am lucky that I have an excuse to spend money on fonts. I need them for what I do with design day in and day out. Some of my favorite font sites are: myfonts.com and veer.com. However their fonts can be pricey. Two great free resources are dafont.com and fontsquirrel.com. I love these fonts for finding new and funky.

The moral of the story? Choosing the correct font is as important for a design as choosing the right outfit. It makes a statement, it sets the tone…and the perfect one can knock it out of the park!