There’s something about vintage cross-stitch samplers that I find extraordinarily intriguing. Putting aside how beautiful some of them are, I think it has to do with their representation of alphabets. Each letter stitched is there for its own sake…without any intent whatsoever to form a word, sentence or paragraph.
Instead, they were made to practice and/or demonstrate one’s skill in needlework. They weren’t meant to be anything other than artistic, and beautiful to look at.
Which makes me feel a lot less crazy for being so enamored and in love with typefaces…because they are beautiful, and they can exist just for their own sake, and not only for the sake of some graphic layout.
The above beauty was actually stitched by a child named Catherine Archer in eighteen-something-or-other while at the Muller orphanage in Bristol, England…the photo comes courtesy of The Cross-Stitch Guild.
If you’re like me and doubt your cross-stitch skills, you can still get the look on your computer with Home Sweet Home – a Larabie typeface available in OpenType and as a WebFont at MyFonts (you have to register and go through their checkout, but it’s all free of charge).
When I think of the carnival or circus, I think of big top tents, carousels, clowns, lion tamers, elephants, face painting, and balloons (okay, I also think about popcorn, cotton candy, and trying to win silly stuffed animals). They’re filled with a sense of wonderment and excitement that is special and unique…which is why I think a lot of the typefaces used in relation to these events are equally whimsical and special…
(So special, that if put in the right context, many of them easily double as western typefaces…I wonder how both the wild west and the circus got associated with many of the same shapes and letter forms?)
Here’s a selection of some of my favourites:
1. Carevalee Freakshow; 2. Hoedown; 3. JF Ringmaster; 4. IFC Wild Rodeo; 5. Zebrawood; 6. Big Top; 7. IFC Rail Road; 8. Cast Iron; 9. Helldorado; 10. Chipperfield and Bailey; 11. WM-Circus Dingbats
[ photo credit: Guomunda; texture credits: Pugly Pixel ]
Ever find yourself stumped, trying to find the perfect font? The font that’ll provide the overall tone and inspiration for your whole design? Next thing you know, you’re experimenting with a particular word, applying every possible typeface you can think of that might be what you’re looking for, copy and pasting potentials, and generally driving yourself just a little bit crazy, on top of wasting a bunch of your valuable time? (…or is it just me that does that?)
Well, now there’s a tool that may help save some time, and keep you a little more sane. It’s called wordmark.it, and it allows you to preview a word or sentence in all the fonts installed on your computer….
See, now wasn’t that easier?
There were far too many beautiful fonts in 2010 for me to pick just a few favourites…I’m much too indecisive for that. Luckily, I can rely on others to do it for me! For example, Veer has put together a cute slideshow of their creative teams’ top type picks for 2010.
Font Shop has also put together a pretty exhaustive round-up of their top-selling, and most blogged about fonts of 2010…read it here.
Apparently type isn’t just something used to put together words and sentences anymore, nor to create beautiful typographic layouts…for Masashi Kawamura and Itaru Yonenaga it’s also something you wear.
They’ve taken the idea of the iconic T-Shirt one step further, and made actual “T” shirts designed to have the silhouette of 5 famous typefaces: Helvetica, Caslon, Baskerville, Courier, and Cooper Black.
Now this is fashion I could get into:
I think I’ve died and gone to type heaven. You can see the full line-up here, gain a little insight into how Masashi approached the project, and even learn a little about how you might get your hands on your own “T” Shirt in the new year.
[ found via Happiness Is… ]