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Pixels To Print: Pairing Typefaces

Choosing fonts that work well together is a key factor to the visual success of your brand. While most brands have a primary font associated with their brand, additional typeface(s) are necessary to create hierarchy and add more visual interest. It may seem like a simple task, but choosing typefaces that work well together is quite important to creating a visually appealing and successful design and takes much more thought and consideration than one might think. Luckily, there are some general guidelines that help in making the decision easier.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind when combining typefaces:

1. Limit to 2-3 fonts

With any design, the main goal is to relay a message, so having a design with too many fonts may be seen as cluttered and unorganized. Limiting yourself to 2-3 fonts is a general rule to help keep a cohesive and clear design. However, this rule may of course be broken for more creative and expressive pieces that aren’t used for editorial or corporate purposes!

2. Create contrast

Creating contrast with your typefaces is what allows for a hierarchy to be built, therefore setting apart one section of text from another. If the headline, subheading, and body text of a design are all in the same font, it would be muddy, the message would be confusing, and nothing would stand out to the eye. Instead, pair contrasting fonts, whether that’s a thick font with a thin font, a simple traditional font with a decorative font, or a sans serif font with a serif font. Check out some of these examples below!

3. Stay in the same family

To make the decision even easier, many font families consists of a wide variety of the font, from different thicknesses to italicized or condensed versions, and for some even a serif version. Font families were in fact created to classify fonts that are meant to compliment each other, so using fonts from within the same family will not only be easier to choose contrasting fonts that’s go well together, but it will also ensure that your design and text are cohesive throughout.

4. Pair similar styles

While it is important to create contrast with your font choices, it is also important to keep in mind the style or “mood” of your fonts. From a design standpoint, it is easy to tell if a font comes off as professional versus a funky and “fun” font. For instance, the font used on a corporate letterhead is not going to be the same as a bubbly script font used for a birthday party invitation. So understandably, it wouldn’t make too much sense to pair these two together. In this sense, choosing fonts with complementary moods that are still different enough to stand apart is something that should be considered!

As with all things creative, general guidelines are in place to be understood, but rules can be broken to create something unique and artistic! Having the knowledge of the basic principles will give you the design instincts to then pair with your creativity, taking your design the next level.

NorthPoint’s design team is also here to assist you in your fontcombinations and designs. Reach out atany time to get our personal opinions and advice!

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