30 Sample of Helvetica Font used in Giant Brands : The fonts you choose for both your content and logo portray who you are as a brand. This is why big brands are careful and extremely particular about the fonts they choose.
While many would expect such big brands to set about creating their customized typography given the resources that are at their disposal (some brands like Yahoo! and Heineken have opted for this), a majority of these brands prefer using an existing font and modify it to suit their taste and vision. Soon enough, the font gets associated with the brand in no time.
One of the most ubiquitous fonts that famous brands use is the Helvetica font. Formerly known as Die Neue Haas Grotesk, Helvetica is a sans-serif typeface which was developed by Max Miedinger, a Swiss typeface designer with contribution from Eduard Hoffman in 1957. It was created at the Hass type foundry (known as Haas’sche Schriftgiesserei) of Münchenstein, Switzerland.
Haas’sche Schriftgiessrei was controlled by Stempel, a type foundry that was also in the control of Linotype. Helvetica was based meticulously on Schelter-Grotesk and created as a neutral typeface with no specific meaning in itself. The idea behind the neutrality of the Helvetica font was that they are not meant to give any meaning.
The name Die Haas Grotesk was converted to Helvetica by the marketing director at Stempel in 1960. The reason behind this change was to market the font on an international scale. At first, it was put forward that the typeface should be named Helvetia, i.e., Latin for Switzerland, but creative professionals were not in support of this designation as they deemed it improper to name the font after a country.
Therefore, the name “Helvetica, ” i.e., Latin for Swiss became the acceptable name for the sans serif typeface.In 2007, a feature-length film which was directed by Gary Hustwit was released in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Helvetica typeface.
The creation of the Helvetica font was influenced by the Akzidenz-Grotesk typeface, created in 1898 by Berthold. Its bold, clean, and modern look makes it a favorite among designers and this has made this acclaimed VIP of fonts enjoy worldwide acceptance and presence. Big corporations, independent firms from all over the world have made this font a part of our daily lives as well as culture.
There are lots of theories which try to explain why Helvetica is the typeface of choice for many huge brands and designers. A creative digital officer at McGarry Bowen has stated that the Helvetica font is recognizable by anyone who has used Facebook and other social media platforms and therefore looks welcoming to all and sundry.
just what separates a brand name in a standard, mass-distributed typeface from a bona fide logo? One of them is generic and basically worthless, while the other is (hopefully) an impactful, memorable, skillfully made, often very expensive work of design.
In plainer terms, one of them is not.hing, the other is something. Getting from point A to point B is one of the most common, difficult tasks that a graphic designer faces. How do you do it?
Helvetica offers the best possible lesson. Developed in 1957 by Swiss type designers Max Miedinger and Eduard Hoffmann, Helvetica is such a versatile typeface that it is virtually everywhere—logo designs included.
In this post, we’ll look at 30 extremely famous logos all derived from Helvetica. That’s less than half of the big brand companies out there whose logotypes are based on this font, but a good sampling nonetheless—one that shows how a single typeface can work across industries from motorcycles (Harley-Davidson) to makeup (NARS).
Microsoft starts from Helvetica Black Oblique, the italic variant of the heavy font, and makes itself unique through a distinctive ligature between the “f” and “t,” as well as one between the “o” and “s” that takes a cut out of the former.
Both the Japanese manufacturer Panasonic and the German manufacturer Blaupunkt stay very close to standard Helvetica typefaces, spicing them up mainly with color.
Oral-B, which makes toothbrushes and other dental care items, totally transforms its base font through an interesting ligature between the “r” and “a”—weirdly reminiscent of Microsoft, now that we look at it—and another that elides the dash with the B.
9. The North Face
The North Face, by contrast, totally transforms the font through vivid color and text right-aligned with a graphic emblem which we interpret as a cliff, appropriate for the outdoor outfitters.
11. Crate & Barrel
Likewise, the Swiss chocolatier Nestlé makes use of its national typographic inheritance, but implements major changes, rounding all the corners and adding a distinctive bar. Then they put a bird on it.
Skype, meanwhile, starts with Helvetica Rounded Bold, smashes the letters together and encloses them within a friendly bubble. Not our favorite aesthetic, but it is recognizable.
While Panasonic absorbs this into the letters themselves, Blaupunkt isolates it within an emblematic blue dot.
Jeep remains much more similar to its source, but widens the loop of the “J,” drops and tweaks the “e”s and rounds the inside points of the “p.”
Knoll’s logo relies more on the impact of its signature color.
19 . Ambitious about Autism
We’re not sure if the Scotch logo is very successful apart from the signature plaid pattern found on its tape products, which carries much of the brand mark’s mnemonic weight.
21. General Motors
22. Harley Davidson
Would you have ever guessed that Harley Davidson, the quintessential symbol of masculine Americana, was based on a Swiss typeface? Granted, there are significant changes here, to the point where very little other than the basic shape of Helvetica Extra Compressed remains – although can definitely see it in the “D”s.
Talk about big differences here! Could you imagine a bigger disparity between the bold, tight and bright Dole logo, which rounds the “o” into a sun and adds curves to the “l,” and its standard, drab appearance in Helvetica Black?
The simply named 3M, on the other hand, soars to great heights by mashing its two glyphs together and closing in the “3” somewhat.
30 Sample of Helvetica Font used in Giant Brands
Target’s logo is pretty uninspiring, frankly, but it is effective—a thickened up version of Helvetica Bold (not quite as thick as Helvetica Black) with a target sign whose rings are of equal weight.
27. JC Penney
JC Penney is nothing to write home about, either, but is noteworthy for being one of few companies to make use of Helvetica’s slimmer variety, Helvetica Light.
Lufthansa is also pretty close to Helvetica Black, but introduces some slight changes to the thickness of certain elements—for example, the vertical shaft of the “L” and the top of the “a”—that really takes it from good to great. Plus, love that orange.
NARS transforms Helvetica Light (we think) with equal bravado by slimming down the characters even further and overlapping them.
Industry of Brands that used Helvetica font for their logo’s: Airlines brands using Helvetica, Clothing brands using Helvetica, Furniture brands using Helvetica, Tech brands using Helvetica, Electronics brands using Helvetica, Vehicles brands using Helvetica, Office supplies brands using Helvetica, Department stores brands using Helvetica, Cosmetics and hygiene brands using Helvetica, Food brands using Helvetica
That’s just to name a few, and of course, the exact route you take will depend on your brand and brief
In sum, you can take a basic typeface and turn it into logo potential through the following types of tweaks:
Tightened kerning (the distance between letters)
Unique alignment (like in the North Face logo)
Added ligatures (connected letters)
Modified glyphs (slightly changing the shape of the letters)
An emblem or other graphic component
Helvetica will continue to be used for a long time to come as it maintains its boldness and obviousness at any font size, and easy to read for almost everyone.
2020 is going to be split right down the middle when it comes to font trends.
One one side, we’ll see the modern sans serif fonts that have dominated the digital space continue to flourish, and on the other, colorful and expressive ‘character’ fonts will become more popular with brands and designers alike.
“It’s likely that we’ll see brands rebelling against design trends and embracing more quirky alternatives to the geometric sans. Still, when it comes to the demands of branding, the geometric sans serif is undoubtedly a workhorse, and it’s likely to remain the popular choice for some time yet.”
Let’s take a look at the font trends that will define the next year, and learn from the best about how to choose fonts for your logo and brand identity as a whole. You’ll notice checkpoints along the way where we’ve demystified some of the font and design jargon you find out there. After this, you’ll be a design pro!
You may be interested in the following articles as well.
If the internet had its own handwriting, it would be a geometric sans. These are clean, utilitarian fonts that work well in both print and digital mediums, making them insanely popular with, well… pretty much everyone.
Here are a few of our favorite geometric sans fonts that will dominate font trends in 2020.
Helvetica is one of the most iconic fonts ever created. It’s a go-to for designers and brands around the world thanks to its simple, clean appearance, making it versatile across print and digital platforms.
Recently, the team over at the Monotype foundry released a revamp of the old classic, calling it Helvetica Now.
What is a foundry? The name for a design studio that specializes in creating fonts. It refers to the original foundries that created solid metal and wood typefaces for letterpress printers back in the day. Pretty cool right!
Giving Max Miedinger and Eduard Hoffman’s original 1957 typeface a long-awaited facelift for the digital era, the Monotype team used dozens of creatives, using keywords like ‘clear, legible, modern, and geometric’ to inform their design process. To make for a truly flexible font, they also added tons of different weights in the process.
“Helvetica Now opens up new perspectives for design because it offers significantly expanded scope in terms of both functionality and form.”- Markus Hanzer, Designer
Inspired by Jasper Morrison and Naoto Fukasawa’s “Super Normal, Sensations of the Ordinary”, Untitled Sans is the ultimate normcore font. Unassuming, inconspicuous, and beautifully legible, Untitled Sans is favored with designers particularly for headlines and continuous reading.
Part of the beauty of Kris Sowersby’s 2017 cult font is that it doesn’t draw attention to itself. In an age of relentless information-stuffing, sometimes things need to be completely flat to serve their purpose. You wouldn’t want a one-lane highway to suddenly start ‘expressing itself’ with creative bends and potholes just as you overtake a semi. In the same way, Untitled Sans reminds us that things often work best when you don’t notice them.
A public font for public digital space. Public Sans was created in 2019 as part of the United States Web Design System 2.0—a set of coding and design guidelines that make it easier for government websites to make websites that follow similar structures and speak a common visual language. (Yes, the US government has its own font now.)
Public Sans, which is completely free and open-source, was modeled off Libre Franklin and comes with additional weights. It’s a bold, no-nonsense font, similar to Helvetica Now in that it contains no elaborate counters, terminals, or other unnecessary fanciness.
Tip: If you’re designing a brand identity, it’s useful to think about the font in two ways. First, what function is it there to serve? And second, what character do you want to portray? Use simple, unobtrusive fonts for continuous reading, but feel free to get creative with shorter text like logos and headlines.
Expressive Sans Serifs
A ‘serif’ typeface has little tails at the end of each stroke. ‘Sans’ is french for ‘without’ – so a sans serif just means a font without those little tails. But sans serif doesn’t have to mean without character. 2020 font trends will see designers turn increasingly towards expressive sans fonts that add a little more flavor than their practical geometric forebears.
A soft, playful serif with a subtle edge. Based on the iconic Isidora Sans design, Latinotype designer Enrique Hernandex V softened up the terminals to create a more fun and friendly font, while retaining the bold headline quality of its predecessor.
What is a font terminal? The end of a stroke on a letter, like the foot of a P, or the end of an L.
Designed in 2019, Goldplay comes in 2 versions, each with 7 different weights from Thin to Black (AKA not so thin), making it a great example of an expressive sans serif font created to suit multiple mediums, including logos.
It’s a tradition of typeface designers to iterate on previous models, and Olivetta is no different. A powerful update of Antique Olive, Olivetta is a cheeky, retro statement font that includes a number of weights for different executions.
We particularly love the little counters in the “e” and “a”. There’s a cheeky, wink-like quality, which makes sense given that Olivetta was inspired by the ‘ironic’ typefaces of the last decade.
What are font counters? Fully enclosed letter holes, like o, e and a.
Olivetta also hints at a resurgence in retro-inspired fonts, specifically adapted for digital display, which we think will become more popular this year.
Tip: Fonts have their own flavor and character which can be used to reinforce your own brand identity. When designing a logo, choose a font that has the same personality as you and your business.
If you didn’t get the hint from the name, the style of this font alone might give away what inspired it. Fights. More specifically, Latin American wrestling and boxing.
Designed by Marce Moya Ochoa for Latinotype, there’s a dramatic, storyteller quality to this font that we love. According to the designer, the font best suits short and block text applications – like posters or billboards – thanks to its mix and match widths and weights. It also works great with logos, thanks to its stylistic alternates and original ligatures.
What are font ligatures? Where two letters are joined up into a single glyph, like an ampersand (&).
Madera was designed by Malou Verlomme in 2018 as a geometric sans with a little more originality and flavor. A real designer’s font, Madera works across both print and online, with sharp apexes and unique crossbar alternates that give it a powerful graphic feel.
What is a typography apex? The point of a character where two strokes meet, like the tip of an A.
What is a typography crossbar? The horizontal bar, or stroke, across the middle of uppercase A and H.
Madera is a great font for graphic posters, event swag, landing pages, and of course logos!
All the way from India, Ektype foundry’s 2019 Sama Latin is a vibrant yet effortlessly cool font that could work well across multiple platforms. The rounded terminals complement crisp, cloud-like curves, giving Sama Latin a refreshing feel. (Does anyone else want a smoothie right now?)
Sama, which approximately means ‘natural ambiance’ in Hindi, is a vibe-setting, plump typeface with 6 weights, perfect for UX design and wider brand identity usage. Ektype are also worth checking out for their huge range of high-quality Indic scripts. Seriously cool!
Empathetic. Contemporary. Versatile. No, this isn’t the sales copy for your new companion doll. These are the words that informed designer Antonio Mejía when he was creating Trust Sans.
Specifically designed for big corporates who need to appear less ‘Sans Trust’, this is a friendly, approachable font packed full of personality.
Increasingly, we’re seeing big business get friendlier, with fonts like Trust Sans leading the way for a more empathetic style of branding that will continue to flourish in 2020. A great example being Trade Me’s rebrand a couple of years ago:
We’re calling it: these will be on top of the 2020 font trends. Foundries continue to craft versatile digital serifs, and brands continue to adopt them.
As companies like Mailchimp have shown, strong statement serifs with bold color palettes are becoming a huge trend for brand design. It’s only going to continue.
Mailchimp’s 2010 rebrand included a switch to Cooper Light, a move that was seen by many as the spearhead in a retro serif-digital fusion that continues to grow among brands.
Here are a few of the best character serif fonts to watch out for in 2020.
Inspired by Globe Gothic, Jazmin is another retro-revamp for the digital era. A subtle, knife-edge serif adds bite to a softer hippie undertone, giving Jazmin a truly unique feel. Suited for editorial headlines, short text, logos, and brand design, Jazmin is a hugely versatile font with 8 weights, plus a more playful counterpart.
Another great brand font for 2020, Breton is a geometric slab serif inspired by the city of Boston.
What is a slab serif? A serif typeface characterized by thick, block-like serifs.
Designed in 2019 by Daniel Hernández and Rodrigo Fuenzalida, Breton juxtaposes wide rounded characters and skinny non-rounded characters, giving it a unique rhythm that’s hard to place (is it elegant? Retro? British-style?). Ultimately, Breton’s unique personality makes it perfect for editorial and logo design – but it might not work so well for continuous reading!
If Recoleta doesn’t make you immediately want to jump on your Vespa and grab a double espresso, then get outta here! Inspired by 1970s classic fonts like Cooper and Windsor, Jorge Cisterna’s Recoleta is a beautiful slab serif that effortlessly blends firmly planted serifs with expressively cool counters. It’s got a confidence that would be perfect for coffee shops, record stores, bars, and chocolatiers—to name just a few.
Financier’s aesthetic combines digital savvy with British heritage, building off Eric Gill’s original letterforms for Perpetua, a well-known serif. Originally drawn up for the rebrand of the Financial Times in 2014, Financier Display was created with both the broadsheet and the mobile screen in mind. Slick, authoritative serifs like this are a great choice for tech-driven brands and consultancies who are tired of the same old clean serifs that have dominated the last decade.
Take Beamery, for example, who uses a crisp serif on their talent platform.
Released January 2020, Moranga is another stunning modern-retro typeface, reminiscent of Jazmin. Similarly 70s inspired, Moranga took design inspiration from Café Brasil’s funky, flowing letterforms, and Cooper’s weighty, retro feel. A perfect font for brand identities looking to add a friendly flavor to an undertone of cool.
And finally, Cookery: a beautifully flowing, hand-drawn brush typeface with irregular baselines. Scripts like this are a really great way to add dynamism and enthusiasm to your logo, which is why you often see them used in vintage logos.
What is a font baseline? The bottom line on which the letters sit.
Increasingly, brands looking for the human touch in the digital age are moving away from purely geometric sans fonts. If you really want to get personal, a hand-drawn script font like Cookery is a great way to showcase the dynamism and character of your brand.
While these font styles probably aren’t suited for continuous reading, pairing them with other fonts is a great way to give your brand a character boost.
Pick the best font for you!
Choosing the right font can be daunting, particularly when there’s so many to pick from. However, this process doesn’t have to be about following or bucking a trend at all. Trends are just a useful way to see what big brands are doing with fonts. When looking at font inspiration, ask yourself these questions:
What kind of statement are they making with this font?
What’s the nature of their work?
How do you think the font correlates with their personality?
How does the font work within their space, and make them unique at the same time?
When in doubt, go with your gut, and pick fonts that suit the character of your brand. If you’re designing a brand identity, a good rule of thumb is either pick one font for everything, one sans serif and one serif, but very rarely two serifs – since they compete for attention.
Overall, font trends are less like strict rules and more like informative guidelines. Your brand is about you, and your font choice can reflect that. Still, it will be interesting to see what road brands choose to go down this year. Keep your eyes peeled for those retro serifs!
36 Outstanding free and premium Fonts for your next project
Free and Premium Fonts that catches everyone eyes in any kind of project, From brand identities and packaging to editorial pieces and website designs and application design.
These are fonts from some of the biggest type foundries in the world—although you’ll find a few options from the independents, too. Take a look and see which one is suit to your needs better and let us know in the comment section.
It’s been an incredible year for type lovers everywhere. With more independent foundries launching than ever before and the industry’s established names pumping out fresh specimens each month, there’s never been a better time to find the right fonts for your projects.
we’ve done a little research to uncover the top 36 typefaces that are proving popular with graphic designers and those we think will be a big hit in 2020.
From sans serif and slab to serif and display, we’ve thrown in some existing well-known fonts as well as brand new contenders – all designed to give your work that edge you’ve been looking for while maintaining essential clarity and readability.
You may be interested in the following articles as well.
CoType Foundry’s Ambit is an eccentric and unique sans serif font inspired by early grotesques but adapted for modern use. With seven weights and a distinctive look, it’s no surprise that we’ve seen it used for branding, packaging, and editorial projects, both printed and online.
An old-style serif named after the 16th-century printer, Christophe Plantin, this typeface was created in 1913 by the British Monotype Corporation for its hot metal typesetting system. Body text in Plantin has a rich texture and is ideally suited for editorial or book designs – though it performs perfectly well on screens as well. We’ve seen Plantin make something of a comeback in recent months and its growing popularity shows no sign of slowing.
Paratype’s new take on Futura is everywhere. Designed for the Bauer company in 1927 by Paul Renner, it’s easy to see why the uniform type system is proving such a hit with our design students. It consists of seven weights with corresponding obliques and eight condensed styles, all coordinated in letterforms, metrics, and weights, so they work better together.
Untitled Sans is a plain neogrotesk sans based on the ideas of Jasper Morrison and Naoto Fukasawa’s Super Normal project. Throughout 2019, we’ve seen it pop up in many students’ projects. We can only thank Morrison and Fukasawa for bringing this brilliant typeface to life.
36 Outstanding free and premium Fonts for your next project
5. FF Meta
Designed by Erik Spiekermann, FF Meta has popped up in quite a few projects at Shillington throughout 2019. The humanist sans serif typeface family was released in 1991 intended to be a “complete antithesis of Helvetica”, which he deemed “boring and bland”. It’s always been on our radar, but it’s been interesting to see it as one of this year’s more prominent fonts.
Hailed as a best-selling modern geometric sans, TT Norms Pro has 22 styles – 11 upright, 11 italics – and two variable fonts giving unlimited possibilities. It’s a reliable workhorse that will undoubtedly be in every designer’s toolkit in 2020.
If you’ve ever wished Clarendons had italics or that your favourite slab serif had a few more weights and was able to look good in small text, then Sentinel by Hoefler&Co is the perfect typeface for you. And it’s a modern slab serif that’s getting a lot of attention in our design community.
Mark van Bronkhorst designed Sweet Sans as a tribute to the engraver’s sans serif. It’s a family based on the lettering templates called ‘master plates’ but updated for contemporary use. Not surprisingly, it’s made quite an impression in 2019, and we think it’ll remain a bestseller over the next 12 months.
Univers was created in 1957 by Adrian Frutiger for Charles Peignot at Deberny & Peignot. A neo-grotesque sans-serif, it was one of the first consistent typeface families and has been quite the popular choice for designers everywhere. Our students loved using this typeface over the last 12 months, and we can see it being a top font in 2020, too.
Influenced by the geometric-style sans serif faces popular in the 1920s and ’30s, Brandon Grotesque is another big prediction for 2020. Designed by Hannes von Döhren, it’s functional with a dash of warmth – and is something our students can’t get enough of. With plenty of weights and italics to choose from, and already pitched as a “modern classic”, we can understand why.
A stressed sans-serif, Peignot has almost become a symbol for France and all things French since its launch in 1937. Designed by the poster artist A. M. Cassandre, it mixes capital and lowercase forms in such a pleasing way that it’s no wonder the typeface continues to set trends today.
A new and experimental sans-serif typeface, Mantra by Cynthia Torrez is perfect for brand identities, logotype, headline text and captions. So much so, we’ve seen it in many student projects this year.
Robert Slimbach’s Minion was released in 1990 by Adobe. Inspired by late Renaissance-era type and intended for body text, the serif typeface is popping up in many editorial projects at Shillington. We think it’ll find even more ground in 2020.
Another excellent typeface by Hannes von Döhren, Supria Sans is a type system with true italics and true obliques inspired by the practicality of Swiss type design with a more playful slant of subtle curves and fine detailing. Blown up it looks impactful and gorgeous; at smaller sizes, clean and classic. A great option for 2020.
This versatile typeface has a bold and racy condensed look with the flexibility of a grotesque. And it’s graphically unique with wide alternates to the uppercase, numerals, and some symbols. We’ve seen a lot of it in 2019 and have a feeling it’s going nowhere anytime soon.
A sans-serif display font family in eight weights with matching neutral italics, Matrice is rising up the font charts at Shillington. Supporting over 75 languages and influenced by the Grotesk typefaces developed in the early 20th Century, we can see why it’s a leader. Perfect for branding, logotype, headline text, and caption.
36 Outstanding free and premium Fonts for your next project
Mark Bloom of Mash Creative has just launched his own foundry, CoType, after years of creating his own font families. We love Aeonik. Described as a “structural workhorse, crafted with mechanical detail”, it’s conceived as a “neo-grotesque with a geometric skeleton” and comes in seven weights and italics, so you can get full use out of the family.
Content continues to be king. And it’s going nowhere in 2020. Which is why we love Character Type’s latest typeface system, NewsSans. Incorporating no fewer than 90 styles, it allows you to create a varied typographic look, effortlessly ranging from loud and expressive, to subtle and reserved. The large x-height combined with low ascenders and descenders allows for tight and efficient designs. All sharp corners were trimmed off to add character and nuance of extra space.
We especially like how NewsSans’ strokes link humanist curves with ‘American Grotesque’ details and solid square stems. The system contains nine weights from hairline to black, and five widths from compressed to extended, each accompanied by a proper italic. Free trial fonts are available exclusively via charactertype.com.
eatrice is a new kind of typeface by New York foundry, Sharp Type. The family is an exploration of contrast methodologies, combining various aspects from the canon expansionist systems, inverted contrast, and the contrast behaviour of standard sans-serif grotesks.
“These methodologies were dissected and used as cornerstones in building our own system, with the final result landing largely in unexplored territory,” explains Sharp Type. “Built on the foundation of a traditional American Gothic but with tight-as-can-be spacing, the superfamily spans a robust set of weights and includes two optical sizes: a super high-contrast, tightly packed Display cut, as well as a standard low-contrast cut, designed to function beautifully in a wide range of optical sizes.”
Brought to you by New Zealand foundry Klim, Untitled Sans is a plain, Neo Grotesk sans validated by the ideas of Jasper Morrison and Naoto Fukasawa’s Super Normal project.
It has the same principles applied to it as its complementary typeface, Untitled Serif, which is drawn from the old-style genre of types: the post-Caslon, pre-Times workhorses offered by almost every metal type foundry of the time. This is a typeface we’re seeing again and again.
Gilroy is a modern sans serif with a touch of geometry. Designed by Radomir Tinkov, it’s a younger brother of the original Qanelas font family and comes in 20 weights and 10 uprights with matching italics. Rather wonderfully, the Light & ExtraBold weights are free of charge, so you can use them to your heart’s content.
36 Outstanding free and premium Fonts for your next project
23. DIN Next
DIN is that classic typeface you always root for – the one you want to use but just can’t bring yourself to because it’s limited in its range of weights and widths. The century-old design has proven to be timeless, but it needed a modern update. That’s where DIN Next steps nicely in – a versatile sans serif family that will never go out of style.
This classic design turned modern must-have, created by Akira Kobayashi, includes seven weights that range from light to black, each of which has a complementary italic and condensed counterpart. There are also four rounded designs, stretching the original concept’s range and core usability. And there’s a suite of small capitals, old-style figures, subscript, superscript and several alternate characters.
Just like Grandma’s best recipe, Recoleta combines a variety of ingredients – from various popular 1970s typefaces, such as the soft and gentle shapes found in Cooper or the fluid, angled strokes in Windsor, mixed into one single design that features familiar, yet fresh, modern flavours.
Published by Latinotype, its variety of weights provide a range of choices that will help you find the best typographic colour for your project. Lighter weights are well-suited for body text while heavier ones are ideal for high impact headlines. The available stylistic alternates offer a number of different characters that give your logo or business card a unique look.
Fann Grotesque by Colophon has upright styles that seem to capture the broader spirit of 19th century British Grotesque, exploring its idiosyncrasies and imperfections. The designs draw inspiration from a number of British type foundries including Stephenson Blake, Day & Collins and Miller & Richard. I’ll give you an example – the floral italics adopt an unusually cursive style for a sans serif, a gesture sparked by a page from a Fann Street Letter Foundry type specimen.
Available in nine weights: Thin, ExtraLight, Light, Book, Regular, Medium, SemiBold, Bold and Black – all with corresponding true italics.
Another one to come out of Sharp Type is Doyle, a period piece and “loving synthesis of two iconic styles that became the visual backdrop of a generation”. Taking cues from Lucas Sharp’s ode to Cooper Black drawn from memory and a style reminiscent of ITC American Typewriter to create something entirely new, the coherent family is both structured and loose, with “inky wetness positively brimming with life”.
Courtesy of Monotype, Albertus Nova is a digital revival of Berthold Wolpe’s earlier design of Albertus. This new design enlarges the typeface set from its previous two weights into a robust set of five ranging from thin to black, all with extended language support including Cyrillic and Greek.
Berthold Wolpe began working on Albertus in 1932, at the encouragement of Stanley Morison. Morison saw an example of Wolpe’s engraved lettering and liked it so much that he commissioned a typeface based on the design. Since then, the original Albertus typeface has been used on book covers, in branding, on signs and in video games. We expect to see a lot more of this font in 2020.
Created in 2013 by German type designers Hannes von Döhren, Christoph Koeberlin and the FontFont Type Department, FF Mark contains 10 weights from Hairline to Black and is ideally suited for film and TV, advertising and packaging, editorial and publishing, logo, branding, music and nightlife, software and gaming, sports as well as web and screen design. It also comes with a complete range of figure set options – old-style and lining figures, each in tabular and proportional widths.
36 Outstanding free and premium Fonts for your next project
29. TT Norms Pro
Considered to be one of bestselling geometric sans ever released, TT Norms Pro is a reliable workhorse. With classic type character proportions, the designers (Ivan Gladkikh, TypeType Team and Pavel Emelyanov) have given us eleven weights and eleven corresponding italics, two variable fonts, small capitals, stylistic alternates, ligatures, and broad support of OpenType features. This is a family that can be easily adapted for different purposes. TT Norms Pro works equally well in large text arrays and in small headings, and it is “the one” universal geometric grotesk.
Coign by Colophon is an extensive study of condensed forms based on the DeLittle type foundry’s Elongated Sans. “DeLittle’s type challenges conventional letterforms, pushing the notion of what is ‘condensed’ to the absolute limit,” says the foundry. “A quoin, Coyne, coigne or, in this case, Coign, is a wedge-like device used in letterpress printing to lock type and spacing material into place within a chase or directly onto a press.
“Combining the systematic approach of Adrian Frutiger’s Univers and the eccentricities of 19th and 20th-century wood type, Coign offers a vast range of condensed styles that explore how the relationship between counter form and letterspacing can alter the expression and texture of type.”
Super condensed designs are typically limited to a small range of styles as part of a much larger family, but Coign offers 28 styles with seven weights in four different widths – all of them super condensed. It’s no wonder this font is proving a hit.
The first weights of Neue Haas Grotesk were designed in the late 1950s by Max Miedinger with input from Eduard Hoffmann. Neue Haas Grotesk was to be the answer to the British and German grotesques that had become hugely popular thanks to the success of functionalist Swiss typography. The typeface was soon revised and released as Helvetica by Linotype AG.
As Neue Haas Grotesk had to be adapted to work on Linotype’s hot metal line casters, Linotype Helvetica was in some ways a radically transformed version of the original. During the transition from metal to phototypesetting, Helvetica underwent additional modifications. And in the 1980s Neue Helvetica was produced as a rationalised, standardised version.
Designer Christian Schwartz later released a digital revival of Neue Haas Grotesk, marking an opportunity to set history straight. “Much of the warm personality of Miedinger’s shapes was lost along the way. So rather than trying to rethink Helvetica or improve on current digital versions, this was more of a restoration project: bringing Miedinger’s original Neue Haas Grotesk back to life with as much fidelity to his original shapes and spacing as possible (albeit with the addition of kerning, an expensive luxury in handset type).”
Schwartz’s revival was originally commissioned in 2004 by Mark Porter for the redesign of The Guardian, but not used. Schwartz completed the family in 2010 for Richard Turley at Bloomberg Businessweek. Its thinnest weight was designed by Berton Hasebe.
Harriet is a serif typeface brought to you by Okay Type. It’s sort of a contemporary reimagining of Baskerville with a dash of Scotch Roman. A versatile family, it has two optical sizes and a range of weights. The display styles are exuberant enough to sparkle at large sizes, while the text styles are more restrained, with a sturdiness more appropriate for everyday use.
Akira Kobayashi worked alongside Avenir’s esteemed creator Adrian Frutiger to bring Avenir Next Pro to life. A new take on a classic, it’s an expansion of the original concept that takes the font to the next level.
As well as the standard styles ranging from ultra-light to heavy, this 32-font collection offers condensed faces that rival any other sans on the market in on and off-screen readability at any size alongside heavyweights that would make excellent display faces in their own right and have the ability to pair well with so many contemporary serif body types. Overall, the family’s design is clean, straightforward and works brilliantly for blocks of copy and headlines alike.
36 Outstanding free and premium Fonts for your next project
Although Nib was originally triggered by a stone carving Dries Wiewauters spotted in Denmark, the final family is a blend of multiple influences. Initially developed for the Museum of Fine Arts in Ghent, Belgium – in close collaboration with Ruud Ruttens, the head of their design department – Nib is now available for licensing.Both the serifs and idiosyncratic overhanging forms such as the «f», «j» and «y» give it an elegant, yet eccentric quality. There are multiple different gestures occurring, some based on calligraphy, others from stone-carving. But together they create a symbiosis that balances many opposite qualities. “Nib strives to be both friendly and aggressive in the same moment, thus allowing it to be moulded and applied to a wide range of contexts,” explains Colophon, the foundry behind the type family, which is available in five weights (Light, Regular, Semibold, Bold, and Black) with corresponding italics.DownloadFont
35. Silk Serif
Rakel Tómasdóttir is the person behind Silk Serif, a high-contrast typeface with thin, pointy, heavily bracketed serifs, and ball terminals in the appropriate places, as well as bracketed junctions in various letterforms. The main feature of this delicate and legible typeface is the disconnection between the bowls and the stems. However, the bowl is very close to the stem, creating the illusion of connection. A sophisticated choice for your projects.
Originally created as a bespoke typeface for the 2013 and 2014 identity of design conference and competition Visuelt (Oslo, Norway) – also known as the National Norwegian Design Awards – this typeface spawned from a more considered and constrained version of Aperçu. “From its initial roots and underlying aesthetic, new details were brought in to remove some of the more distinguishable features of Aperçu to make way for a new tone of voice and trajectory,” explains Colophon Foundry.
“We revised and revisited the typeface and produced additional weights to accompany the pre-existing Regular. The Lightest of these weights took on thin precise curves, whereas the heaviest weight counters were opened and sharp terminal ends chiselled to provide small technical details to an otherwise brut-ish and heavy face.”