Fonts are fun, and today many spectacular fonts are just a few clicks away.
But, it can be tricky to use decorative fonts well, especially script (or cursive style lettering) fonts. Script fonts can be challenging to read, size, or space, so frequently designers shy away from using them at all.
Have no fear!
Script fonts are beautiful typefaces that can appear elegant, informal, or even downright playful. These decorative delights can be managed well with three basic tips:
1. Read Between the Lines
When using a script font, pay attention to the design elements between individual characters.
If a script font looks crowded (or too condensed), you can adjust the font kerning. This will give the eye more breathing room by adding spacing between each letter. But if you adjust the tracking, you may disrupt the flow or connection between letters. If you loosen your kerning, be sure to double-check that each letter is still correctly flowing to the next.
2. Be a Minimalist
Many script fonts have exaggerated ascenders or descenders (letters that go above or below the main text line) which may require greater space between lines.
Typically, script fonts are best when used for one line only (like a quote or a tagline). If you do need to create space between lines, adjust the leading of your font to make it more reader-friendly.
Since the priority of your text is readability, script fonts should be used sparingly. They are best used for headers or call-outs, and a good rule of thumb is to use them for script sections that are seven words or less.
3. Be Distinct
The purpose of script fonts is to add a personal, handmade feel to your message.
When you use an overly formal font, it can come across as snobbish or condescending. Instead, go for script fonts with a more personal feel (like your best friend’s handwriting).
While some cursive fonts can be unprofessional, some of the best fonts are those that aren’t too calligraphic or too casual. Look for something right in between that makes your reader feel right at home!
Need some suggestions? Here are 12 fan favorites for fonts, many of which are FREE:
- Alex Brush
- Great Vibes
- Grand Hotel
- Black Jack
- Euphoria Script
Want to view a few script fonts in action? Here are 35 script fonts on display for your enjoyment!
Looking to bring more warmth or friendliness to your message? Script fonts are a beautiful way to add authenticity and humanity to your visual brand, but they do come with unique design challenges. Keeping these tips in mind will help you use the script and cursive lettering in a way that brings a simple, sophisticated touch.