Monthly Archives: May 2013

Pinterested: Swashbucklers


FontShop’s Wedding Month starts next week! Along with our Great Pairs pinboard, prepare yourself with the pins on the Swashbucklers board. If you’re working on save-the-dates and invitations, this pinboard will provide plenty of swashy inspiration!

Common Pitfalls with Apostrophes, Quotes, Foot and Inch Marks, etc.

If you haven’t yet, I’d read last week’s quick discussion on the terminology and proper use of several lookalike punctuation marks. Let’s get going.



Comma,-Apostrophe-4 Comma,-Apostrophe-3

Since there’s no separate key for open or close single quote, the apostrophe key often serves the function of indicating where the appropriate punctuation mark should go, and leaves it to software to either guess what to put in its place, or ignore the mark (leaving the dumb quote unchanged).


Unless explicitly specified, word processors will in many cases render your apostrophe as a single open quote. This commonly happens when apostrophes begin a word or line, or as in the example above, appear right after a hyperlink. An often-overlooked case is the abbreviated year, e.g. ’45 for 1945.

How to specify: On the Mac, type Shift+Option+]. In Windows, hold Alt while typing 0146 on the 9-key number pad. In HTML, the entity is ’.


Software tends to get these right nearly every time. The one thing that throws it off occasionally is an apostrophe confusion (described above). InDesign gives us the option to not process dumb quotes and leave them as is. By default, they’re enabled under the type preferences setting ‘Use Typographer’s Quotes,’ a misnomer if you ask me, since curly quotes should not belong solely to the typographer. For the web, the HTML entities are ‘ and ’ for left and right single quotes, “ and ” for double. Mac users can type these with Option+] and Shift+Option+] (single), and Option+[ and Shift+Option+[ (double) quotes. In Windows, it’s what you probably expect, more codes to type in while holding Alt. Respectively they are 0145 & 0146, 0147 & 0148.

‘Okina & similar characters


Since at present a relative few fonts designed for print support this glottal stop character, I recommend using a left single quote (for print or at display sizes on the web). But if you’re working on the web at text sizes, and have a reliable fallback font that doesn’t distract too much, I’d use the appropriate HTML value: ʻ. One last thing to consider: though the ʻokina may look like a punctuation mark, in the Hawaiian language it’s a letter.



Similar business with primes, the marks used for feet′ and inches″ don’t exist as such in many fonts for print, but do exist in the fonts with extensive character sets for web. Prime and double prime have the following HTML entities: ′ and ″. If they exist in a typeface, they should be mapped to this and subsequent Unicode addresses: U+2032. What to use instead then? I often italicize dumb quotes and kern them in place as a stand-in for primes. No need for that in the sample above, mind you, Aften Screen has you covered.



Just one note on the comma. Type designers go to some trouble to make an italic comma that works with the rest of the italic characters. If you’re emphasizing a single word using italics that’s followed by a comma, italicize the comma (and maybe even the space after the comma) as well. Same goes for any surrounding quotation marks, unless you’re prepared to kern it yourself.

That’s all. Using Type continues here Thursday. Special thanks to Frode Helland’s Aften Screen for the illustrations.

Great Pairs: Corporate A, S, E.

I remember first being introduced to Kurt Weidemann’s Corporate ASE collection while working for a boutique print design firm in Washington some five years ago. It seemed odd to me at the time that Mercedes had not secured exclusive licensing to the suite of typefaces they commissioned. In the years since it has remained no less odd. The suite consists of a serifed text face, Corporate A for antiqua, A slab, Corporate E for egyptienne, and a sans, Corporate S.
Corporate-ASE-3It should be no surprise that the faces work perfectly with each other, but one unexpected perk is the range of size at which these robust forms are capable of working. The refined Corporate A manages to ably set text and perform beautifully at display sizes, a feat that, despite the common throwaway line in type marketing copy, is in fact rare. I chalk this ability up to its narrow width, loose fit, tall x-height, and controlled contrast.
Aside from the fact that Daimler-Benz has employed them for nearly 30 years, the basic shapes should look somewhat familiar. The antiqua and sans don’t differ so radically in their relationship from that of a modern to a gothic. The main difference being polish and an overall sophisticated coolness.
That’s it for this week. Great Pairs continues next week with wedding month pairs.

Buyer’s Guide: Dalton Maag EULA

Welcome to our second installment in our EULA series where we highlight a few points that may interest you. Last week we went over OurType’s EULA, this week we’ll focus on Dalton Maag.


Dalton Maag allows font embedding within their standard EULA, but the font file has to be converted to a web-specific format first. Licensed users can convert files into EOT, WOFF, SVG, and Cufón, as long as the file is produced specifically for the web and cannot be used as a desktop font. As a rule, 1,000 unique visitors a day to your website is equivalent to 1 desktop user license.

Basic EULA Rights

  • Desktop use supports up to 5 users.
  • Web embedding is allowed, but the font file must be converted to web-specific format.
  • 1,000 unique visitors a day to your website is equivalent to 1 desktop user.


  • You cannot share the font with users that do not have a license for the same font.
  • You cannot embed the raw font file into a website.
  • You cannot embed the font into electronic books or magazines.
  • You cannot embed the font into an Application.

See the EULA

If you have additional questions you can always email FontShop’s Support Team for help.

EULA highlights will be posted every other Monday. Stay tuned for Sudtipos.

Pinterested: Great Pairs!


As announced earlier this week, FontShop’s Wedding Month starts next month! Just over a week away, you can prepare by getting acquainted with our Great Pairs pinboard. Every Wednesday, our type expert David Sudweeks pairs two typefaces available on FontShop; you can easily view and find all past pairs on Pinterest!

Comma, Apostrophe, Quote, Grave, Prime, Foot and Inch

Let’s focus on a few character-specific type basics this week – lookalikes. What they are, how they’re used, brief, to the point.




The comma is a punctuation mark that indicates a short pause. It hangs off the baseline, spiraling outward from its interior in a clockwise fashion. You already know this.



An apostrophe is a floated comma that usually hangs somewhere in the air between the ascender and x-height lines. Its precise purpose is that of a stand-in character for parts left out in a contraction or otherwise abbreviated word (it is becomes it’s, international becomes int’l, 1975 becomes ’75), and also in possessives (Shays’s Rebellion or Black’s Law). Ah yes, and some confused people commonly use apostrophes in pluralizing acronyms. In typefaces, apostrophes are commonly drawn with some optical variation from the comma.

Single Quotes, Double Quotes, Open & Close


Quotes, in brief: Quotation marks are for quoting, repeating an utterance exactly as it was said. Use double quotes for this, and single quotes for quotations within quotations. Quote marks point in opposite directions to indicate an opening and closing of the quote. A single open quote is a single close quote more or less rotated in place by 180°. A single close quote is visually indistinguishable from an apostrophe. Now, all that’s true when typesetting English, but depending on the language, quotes may be placed in different positions or face in directions different than those in the familiar usage illustrated above. They may also not be shaped like the quotes above, like for example, «these».

Oh! Also – mirrored open quotes, or grocer’s quotes, are generally seen as endearing relics by English-speaking audiences, though they do have their own unicode addresses, and are the default in some fonts, including some non-display fonts such as Verdana, though not in the latest release of Verdana.

Dumb quotes


Dumb quotes exist because of typewriters. Apostrophes, open and close single and double quotes were reduced to two straightened characters out of pure economy. I can’t fault the inventors. Their machines were never intended for professional typesetting. I could however fault most of the assumptions made since about the necessity of and methods for accessing these ‘extra characters.’ Note how I use single quotes in that last sentence to mark what’s essentially a paraphrased term? If I can’t cite who said it, I feel like double quotes are a bit much. Of course, that’s definitely my own made-up convention.



Meanwhile, the grave accent character can be accessed all alone with a single keystroke. There it is at the top left of your keyboard, just below the escape key. This character is almost good for nothing on its own. Some truly well-meaning people have attempted to give this character something to do, such as indicate a glottal stop, or to make up for the lack of open single and double quotes. Fact is, it’s a combining character, not one to use on its own in professional typsetting unless it itself is the subject of discussion. Use key combinations to put the grave above other characters, such as the e above.

‘Okina, & similar characters


Speaking of glottal stop, the ʻokina above is represented by an open single quote, though it has its own character in Unicode called MODIFIER LETTER TURNED COMMA at this address: U+02BB. ‘Okina is a Hawaiian character, but its representation in Unicode is used by other languages who have other names for it.



Lastly, primes are by contrast quite multi-use characters. In math, primes mark sequential varations of variables. You’ve also seen them marking coordinates on a map, arcminutes (one sixtieth of a degree) with a single prime, arcseconds (one sixtieth of one arcminute) with a double prime. The fractional units of arcsecond, milliarcsecond and microarcsecond, are not represented with triple prime ( ‴ ) and quadruple prime ( ⁗ ), just in case you were wondering. Prime and double prime can also be applied to minutes and seconds as measures of time. Above, in their most common role, they indicate feet and inches. What you see above are in fact italicized straight quotes, same as dumb quotes above, kerned. It turns out that primes aren’t so common in typefaces designed for professional typesetting, so it’s good to know where one has to make do.

Anyway, this is the introduction. Next week, we’ll wrap this up with some tips on how to use all these similar and easily-confusable characters, and what common pitfalls to look out for. Special thanks to Mark van Bronkhorst’s Verdigris for setting all the samples. Till Thursday, I’m David Sudweeks and this is Using Type.

ITC Stone Serif and Supria Sans

I’ve kind of enjoyed pulling out these lesser-known text faces over the past few weeks and putting them through their paces. This week we take a look at Sumner Stone’s ITC Stone Serif with Hannes von Döhren’s Supria Sans.



Supria Sans’s design walks a path somewhere in between the British and German grotesque traditions, with an overall toughened and squared exterior, and a few sweet curves. The entire set includes a normal and condensed width, each with two sets of inclined forms. For emphasis, use either the optically-corrected oblique, or the perversely cute italic.
ITC-Stone-Serif-and-Supria-Sans-4ITC Stone Serif is a marvel of legibility and evenness of color. Its tone is that of artlessness. As some font marketing copy makes a point of noting a typeface’s ‘true’ italics, let me borrow the term and say that Stone Serif’s bold is a true bold. (There’s a semi-bold if you’re not that kind of typographer.)

Catch Great Pairs here each Wednesday.

Mark Your Calendar! June is Wedding Month at FontShop

weddingmonth-savethedate300You are cordially invited to celebrate Wedding Month at FontShop throughout June 2013.

We often get requests from brides, wedding planners, etc. for help picking out just the right typeface(s) to represent that special day. In response, we’ve decided to dedicate a month of our blog to addressing various aspects of wedding collateral design.

Whether it’s invites, placecards, and/or websites for a traditional or non-traditional celebration we’ve got you covered in our regular series. Tune in Mondays for nuptial-focused Buyer’s Guide, Wednesdays for Great Pairs, and Thursdays for Using Type. We’ll also of course be creating some lovely Pinterest boards and calling out any new fonts that would work well to showcase your everlasting love.

Additionally we’ll be hosting two contests for a chance for both designers and couples to build up their font registries. Stay tuned for details.

The fun starts Monday, June 3rd right here on the FontShop Blog. We can’t wait to celebrate our love of fonts with you!

New Fonts This Week

We are overflowing with new fonts this week! Our latest releases include FF Dora & FF Signa Slab from FontFont, Orlando from FilmotypeHerman Mono from Geen Bitter, HS Alwafa from Hiba Studio, Espuma (50% off until June 14) from Mint Type, Mic 32 Stencil from Moretype, Griffy, Rochester, Skranji, and Seaweed Script from Neapolitan, Orenga & Pona Display from Tipografies, and Nexstar from Wiescher. Emigre is also introducing a character extension to Alda.

Heimat Stencil and Heimat Mono from Atlas are $90 until May 26. Relato by Emtype is 30% off until May 31st. Abdo Egypt and Abdo Joody from Abdo Fonts continues to be 30% off until June 2nd. Latinotype’s recent extension, Trend Hand Made, is $19 until June 12.

As always, subscribe to our newsletter and read this blog for tips on using type, Pinterest updates, and more.


FF Dora » Webfonts Available

FF Signa Slab » Webfonts Available



Alda CE



Geen Bitter

Herman Mono

Hiba Studio

HS Alwafa  » Webfonts Available

Mint Type



Mic 32 Stencil  » Webfonts Available




Seaweed Script




Pona Display


Nexstar  » Webfonts Available

Buyer’s Guide: How to choose the right desktop format

Many foundries like to give you an option to license a font in different formats and customers always ask which format is better. The answer is that your decision should be based on the programs that you will be using the fonts in.

Format_MattersHere are some suggestions on choosing the right desktop format.

OpenType (.otf) fonts typically have additional features that can only be accessed by programs that support them. OpenType works best in software like Adobe® Illustrator® and Adobe® InDesign®.

Although Microsoft Word 2010 supports some OpenType features, not all characters can be accessed if the font has a massive amount of alternates. For example, trying to access all the alternate swashes in Feel Script in PowerPoint would be painful. Don’t do it.

Also, you’ll only be disappointed further because OpenType fonts don’t embed well in PowerPoint.

If your workflow includes Microsoft Office programs, like Excel and Powerpoint, then we recommend licensing TrueType formats over OpenType. And if the font doesn’t have a TrueType version, contact us and we can suggest an alternate typeface that may work for you.

Pinterested: New pins this week


Besides new fonts and promotions, we love pinning cool type we find around the web! Check out how Oreo celebrated their 100th birthday or create a message in Neko Font (“Cat” Font) — follow us on Pinterest for weekly typographic finds!

Using Hierarchy


This is the second half of last week’s piece on hierarchy. After giving this topic a week’s worth of thought, I realize that I’m not going to teach much of anything in this article. The subject is too broad. There are too many caveats to keep the end result down to a concise read. If you’d like to learn more about hierarchy, teach yourself something by trying things with hierarchical structure you’ve never tried before, which may or may not be illustrated and narrated below. The type in this piece comes from a previous Great Pair featuring Sindre Bremnes’s Telefon with Robert Slimbach’s Minion.


Above illustrates a couple of common approaches to hierarchical ordering. Breaking content down into logical groupings, and presenting them in an accessible order is what an effective hierarchy does. Beside obvious or common ways of accomplishing this (mostly reliant upon a header’s type size or numbered systems), there are other and better ways.


As mentioned in the piece before, a difference in scale can be measured by the negative space surrounding the element in question. Above I waste a spread in order to create a rhythmic disruption in the book at each chapter break. Below, I use the same content to create a different set of elements. The introductory text is set at the same size as its header (presumably in contrast to the type size in subsequent pages).



If it makes sense to do it, a change of layout can serve as a hierarchical device. Rather than use all your space for a main column of content, keep some space free for important notes of various kinds. Also, I recommend the common-sense stuff such as keeping all body text the same size, adhering to a baseline grid, and setting up styles properly.


Make use of sequential imagery, whether graphic, photographic or by using simple blocks of color, or colored type, or a device as simple as a progress bar. There are boundless intelligent ways of establishing and getting the most out of a clear, useful hierarchy, and if there’s one thing you take from this, I hope it’s that your education in this regard will be self-led, and fun if you remember to set fun rules to play by. Using Type continues here Thursday.

Lavigne and FF Netto

For today’s great pair, let’s look at Ramiro Espinoza’s Lavigne with Daniel Utz’s FF Netto. Trying to come up with a suitable companion for FF Netto, a face that definitely deserves some recognition, it finally occurred to me to test it with a text face that has a pretty conspicuous personality.


Lavigne was created to solve a specific problem in fashion publishing—not enough individuality among the typically bland modern/romantic type palettes characteristic to the industry. Though more well known for its Display cut, Lavigne Text settles down and gets to work at text sizes.


FF Netto, a plainspoken spurless UI/wayfinding face is probably best known for its extensive set of stylized icons.


Together, the two complement their counterparts, each serving as a proper foil to emphasize the best characteristics possessed by the other.

Great Pairs is a regular series. Catch it here each Wednesday.

Watch Livestreams from TYPO Berlin

logo-typoberlinTYPO Berlin Touch kicks off tomorrow (Thursday) and no matter where in the world you are, you can participate. Watch six livestreams throughout the conference (all times Central European):

Thursday, May 16th

Friday, May 17th:

Saturday, May 18th:

New Fonts This Week

Quite the variety of new fonts and promotions this week! DS Type introduces Diversa, Global, Ines, and Prumo. Latinotype’s latest is Courtney and Laura Worthington brings us Harlean at 50% until June 14.

Heimat Stencil and Heimat Mono from Atlas are $90 until May 26. Relato by Emtype is 30% off until May 31st. Abdo Egypt and Abdo Joody from Abdo Fonts continues to be 30% off until June 2nd. Latinotype’s recent extension, Trend Hand Made, is $19 until June 12.

As always, subscribe to our newsletter and read this blog for tips on using type, Pinterest updates, and more.

DS Type

Diversa  » Webfonts Available

Global  » Webfonts Available

Ines  » Webfonts Available

Prumo  » Webfonts Available



Laura Worthington