Difference Between Fonts and Typefaces

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posted on: October 1, 2017

Most people treat the words “fonts” and “typefaces” interchangeably. If you run into a typographic expert, they will quickly correct you on the mistake. If you only think about fonts when you are picking them out for your brand graphics, then the difference might seem confusing or pointless.

Very simply: A font is what you use, a typeface is what you see.

Due to the web, the difference between fonts and typefaces seem to be blurred a bit. In digital printing, fonts became digital computer files, where you can scale them depending on what you want – weight and size. Even among some type professionals, there is some acceptance that the words are now interchangeable. For the nondesigner, you’ll be completely fine using either term.

Best Typography Resources

One of my favorite things about design is learning about the history of typefaces and pairing fonts! I’ve included a few of my favorite resources below:

Thinking With Type is the best introduction guide to using typography in design. This book is used in college design courses, and it is recommended everywhere. If you are studying design, make sure to add this to your bookshelf!

TypeWolf is one of my favorite websites to visit. It is super informative as well as beautiful. This site is an excellent resource on new fonts and font pairings!

If you are working with only Google Fonts, you check out Font Pair for font pairing recommendations!

MyFonts.com publics a periodic newsletter that includes different profiles and essays on creative entrepreneurs in type. It’s one of my favorite newsletters!

Font Friday series has returned, and I’m showcasing different free and premium fonts and pairings that are ideal for lifestyle publishers!

Editor's Note

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