& the slipper still fits


A few days back I found this fantastic article on grouping fonts for your designs. I love finding articles like this. Tell me, when was the last time you only wanted to use 1 font on anything? That's right - NEVER!

Even on our blogs, we have multiple font choices to make and more often than not, we go with what we've always used (inherited from a previous theme or blogger) or just go with one font to be safe. H&FJ gives us the bolstered confidence to not be scared about mixing fonts; and gives us some direction on how to do so too. They even made beautiful and lovely mock ups to show us just what the font combinations would look like in action. I was inspired! Excited! Let's start using these methods to group our own fonts! 

Enter - Heather's tiny problem. I thought all the fonts they were featuring where accessible. In other words - free. I totally somehow missed the purchase font now button on the bottom. 

Do you know how many times lately I've looked for a new font, and then am told I'd have to pay for it? A LOT. This does not make me happy. This is not something I can afford. But wait! Don't despair! Luckily, I'm a little more creative than I thought I was. 

There are free fonts that can help us achieve these same font groupings. And I'm going to share my knock-off font picks with you. Just so we can do a page-to-page comparison, I'm going to use the same colors featured on H&JF's font examples. Let's see how this maps out.

Disclaimer: Buying fonts is like buying artwork - you're helping an at times impoverished medium and artist and helping foster creatively for things we use everyday. If you adore a font - buy it. That being said, there are thousands of free fonts that are beautiful, inspired, and um...cheep. I'm not saying don't buy a font. I'm saying don't feel like you have to buy a font. With enough looking, you'll find something very close to what you were going to pay $100 for.

For a design with Wit, it would cost $427. Here I've replicated the mock-up example using a variation of Bebas (my favs!), Dunkins Sans and Chaparral. Other fonts that could be used to create almost the same look are Headlines One, Antipasto, and Big Mouth. To get this exact look, I did have to play with the character settings in photoshop (this occurs with all the other mock-ups as well.) "Lady Earl Gray" is the font Bebas New set with a gray gradient layer effect on 20% opacity. "Lovely / On the House" is the font Dunkins Sans (based on the Dunkin Donuts font) bolded, with a letter spacing of 200%, and a character height of 120%. "20 individually..." is Chaparral at no change. 

For a design with Energy it would cost $467. This was the first font group I tried replicating and love what I get when you mix Chunk 5, Bebas Original and Fanwood text. Here, I wanted to give you a few secondary options that look just as fantastic. "Breakfast/Mornings/and the food titles" are set in Chuck 5 with no changes. "Cafe de la.." is in Headline One with no changes. Numbers and "Tiffany's/Gwen..." are in Fanwood text with no changes other than regular or italic settings. And "1224..."/food descriptions are in Antipasto no changes. "Reservations/Owner..." are also in Antipasto, but the line height was adjusted to 80%.

A font group with Poise presented the greatest challenge for me. And priced at $697 it should. I'm still not totally happy with the smallest font Ostrich Sans as a subsitution for Verlag, but it does the job well. "Lion Roars" is in the font Black Oak set at a 200% line height and adjusted to have a 18pt space in between each letter. Justus has no changes other than it is set to Italic (a drop down option, not the italic button) for "Just the...", and Ostrich Sans is set to Bold Black and then Medium for "New prosperity...".

A design with Dignity? Well that will put you back $567. What's surprising about this font set, is you could replicate it with Times New Roman, Garamond, and Verdana...if you wanted. (Those all come free on your computer...fyi). Here, I've used Adobe Garamond (a thinner lined font tweaked by Adobe) with no changes for "Lizt Remembered/Suite for Chopin"; Circle New with a character spacing of 50% for the "CML info"; and Fanwood text, all caps and not, for the "The history of" and the paragraph of Lorem ipsum.