Remix Your Font Styles

Great typography and font families have been with us for many years (I don’t know if you knew that…). Many a designer these days seems to think that he’s cracked the code: introduced a style or a curvature that no one knows about. The truth is, we don’t create new styles that often apart from mixing something old with something newer. In this way, we are making a new creation. For fonts to excel, to really capture attention and appeal to people, we have to go with what works. And, very often, what works is what’s tried and true.

It’s also true that we designers re-introduce and even introduce designs every day. There are people that saw something in their childhood on the album art of a record, then the seventies and eighties passed by and the design traits were long forgotten. Today’s designers should remix some of the old, then re-introduce those fonts and styles to people that grew up with them, because they were fun then and they’re fun now.

People like retro. Better yet, take a flashback font and mix it in with newer design characteristics, so it’s still something fresh, but familiar at the same time.

We have young people that haven’t ever seen the vintage font styles. People under the age of 25 were born in the nineties. By the time they could read, they had the Internet and N64. Young people today only know what the vintage styles are because we designers today have introduced them. That’s why you see products like these (that would be familiar to your grandfather) introduced to the market in the present. Yes, it looks old-fashioned, but it also looks great. Old-fashioned isn’t a bad thing, when it’s new to people that never saw it in the first place.

Look at the success of Huckberry, and other fine businesses that have embraced fonts and styles that appeal to a bygone era. All I need to say is “Instagram” and I can wrap this up.

Last year, I was introduced to Creative Market. This is a great designer’s resource. It’s a site of designers that buy and sell each other’s assets: custom pictures, filters, effects, and typefaces. Here’s some that appeal to the old and make it new:

I don’t make anything from telling you about Creative Market and their wears, but they really do impress. When you want to design something with some extra creative sauce on top, look into a new yet unoriginal font, and see what you can do with it.

Joe Darnell

Joe is a UI and graphic designer with prior experience as the creative director for three media-based businesses. Joe’s passionate about web design and graphic design with about 15 years of experience in the media industry. Additionally, Joe is the host of the Top Brew and Techtonic podasts, both featured on iTunes.