10 Principles for Choosing and Using Typefaces

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An exciting aspect of learning how to choose fonts is the creative freedom it affords. Mixing and combining typefaces is a lot of fun and may help ideas come to life. Selecting the proper fonts is like putting color into a black-and-white project; it allows the character and creativity to pop through.

You will always have to consider some similar trade-offs with typeface, whether you are trying for a super-subtle and simple design or a bright and robust layout with impact. Choosing a font is more about generating the perfect feel for a design project than it is about following particular methods.

Due to the widespread use of typefaces, every creator must learn how to apply these strategies. Layout, grid, colors, and other components of typeface art must all be considered by the designer.

Weather you use premium fonts or free fonts for commercial use, always remember to follow these strategies.

#1. Consider the Personality

Where there are different factors to consider when selecting a typeface for a design job, personality is crucial. Remember that font variations like capital letters, bold, italics, and even letter shape (sharp vs. flowing) contribute to the typeface’s identity.

Users will form an opinion of your project based on the typefaces you choose. You have two options when it comes to the font:

  • Choose a typeface that complements the tone you wish to achieve with your design.
  • Choose a neutral typeface, and then let the remainder of the design speak for itself.

#2. Settle on a Set of Fonts

It is unusual to finish a design project using only a single font. Instead, a majority of them use two typefaces: one for prominent components like headings and another for the main body content.

To obtain the correct feel for the project, you will need to pick a pair of typefaces that complement each other. This usually consists of one typeface with a lot of personalities while the other is reasonably neutral.

You might not want two typefaces that appear to say contradictory things. Typefaces with complementary shapes make an excellent font pairing since they draw attention to the information without competing for it.

#3. Check the Readability

Consider readability in terms of questions like: How simple is it to read your preferred font? And, does that response remain valid whether the font is small or large? If you have to read it from afar, it can be helpful when choosing typefaces.

It is not highly readable if you have to spend time thinking about the words in a design to get the message because of the way the letters look. In some circumstances, such as for a short headline, it is acceptable to use a beautiful font, but consider if you are still getting the information through if people are unable to comprehend the text?

#4. Be Wary of Experimenting with Unusual or Trendy Choices

Trendy or wacky font alternatives, unless you are producing a one-off element like a poster or an event invitation, can be more hassle than they are worth in the long run. Since most design projects must last an extended period, you will need typefaces that can withstand the test of time.

Trendy alternatives can quickly date a project, whereas bold options can work for one design aspect but fall flat when applied to another in the campaign. Consider mixing typefaces in a modern style if you want to create something with a trendier feel.

#5. Select a High-Functioning Option

This is not the most entertaining advice, but it is pretty sound: Pick a good font that can be used in all ways you intend. Of course, this implies that your fonts must operate equally effectively in all applications, including print, online, and digital publication.

The typeface must be licensed for all appropriate applications and compatible with all systems used in the design. This technical consideration may lead to selecting two sets of typefaces with a similar appearance and feel — one for print and the other for the web. However, with so many options available that offer a lot of flexibility, this is becoming less usual.

#6. Make sure your Tone and Brand are in Sync

Fonts used in any design project should adhere to your brand or style guide if you have one. This involves linking the brand’s style and attitude.

You may also discover that brand rules specify which typefaces or styles you are permitted to use. Alternatively, you may find that you have some leeway in adding a typeface for particular usage as long as it fits a core brand font.

The main takeaway here is to double-check your brand requirements before diving into font choices to ensure you don’t break any regulations for your company. This will undoubtedly be helpful in the long run.

#7. A Little Versatility can go a Long Way

A typeface family with a lot of versatility can make choosing typefaces a lot simpler. When it comes to finding a nice font, nothing beats a “super-family.” In a particular typeface, these sets offer a wide range of alternatives and styles.

A super-family is a collection of types, such as sans serif and serif designs, as well as regular, slab, and rounded variants that have been designed to operate together. When you are looking at type families, consider the hierarchy of your concept design.

Do you require various weights, ranging from thin to thick, as well as italics and bold possibilities? If the answer is no, you may probably not need a super-family. Still, most designs necessitate the versatility of a typeface with a complete character and glyph collection, as well as standard, italic, and bold versions.

#8. Take into Account your Budget

When it comes to picking fonts for a project, the cost is a crucial factor to consider. What is the maximum amount you are inclined to pay for fonts? If you have a limited budget, you could start with a few fonts and then hunt for similar possibilities (with smaller families) to save money.

A library can be an excellent alternative if you use a plethora of new typefaces regularly. The sole disadvantage of a library is that fonts are licensed only to you and cannot be packaged for a customer.

#9. Use a Lot of Contrast

The key to efficiently employing fonts is to concentrate on high contrast selections. Of course, you do not want to use similar typefaces. Instead, use strikingly distinct fonts, such as a serif and sans serif combo or lightweight and a slab.

Take into account the contrast between your font choice and the design canvas. Is the font strong enough to stand out against the background? Is it compatible with, but distinct from, photos or video elements? Is it a good match for your color scheme?

All of these factors contribute to ensuring that typefaces are readable and that the mood of your work is appropriate. It is not unusual to put everything in and then decide to increase the font-weight slightly to provide adequate contrast.

Playing around with different possibilities and putting them to the test in a real-world setting might help you figure out if the contrast is strong enough to achieve optimal readability and an excellent design feel.

#10. Disobey the Regulations (Occasionally)

What purpose is a design rule if it cannot be broken now and then? You can come across a font pairing that looks great yet defies all design rules.

It is OK if used sparingly. From time to time, you can go for it. An unorthodox font choice might be practical as long as the project works for the client and viewers.

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