goofy fontsDon’t use them

I once met a law­yer who had set his let­ter­head in a font called Stencil:

Who were his tar­get clients? Army-sur­plus stores? He ex­plained that he wanted some­thing distinctive.

Dis­tinc­tive is fine. Goofy is not.

From the top: no, no, no, no, and hell no.

Nov­elty fonts, script fonts, hand­writ­ing fonts, cir­cus fonts—these have no place in any doc­u­ment cre­ated by a pro­fes­sional writer. Save them for your next ca­reer as a de­signer of break­fast-ce­real boxes.

by the way
  • Don’t mis­un­der­stand—I com­pletely be­lieve in the power of a font to make an im­pres­sion. Some of these fonts might be use­ful in a sign or a bill­board, where the goal is to at­tract at­ten­tion us­ing lim­ited space. But in a doc­u­ment that in­vites the pa­tience and at­ten­tion of a reader, a goofy font is as sub­tle as a jack­ham­mer in a li­brary. And equally unwelcome.

  • If you think we live in the golden age of goofy fonts—not even close. Type­founders of the 19th cen­tury did it all (and more, and better).

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