10 Types of Fonts Every Professional Designer Needs to Own

You’re a designer, therefore, you contain fonts. A lot of them. Probably more than any respectable person should, and you’re still constantly on the hunt for more. They disappear on sale, you buy them. They’re free, you come by them — never know when you’ll need one, correct? Yeah, fonts are fun. But there are some types that you need, even if they’re ones you don’t necessarily want.

If you were a mechanic, you wouldn’t expect to come by by with just a socket set. No, you’d contain a toolbox full of wrenches, hammers, screwdrivers, and specialty tools because a marvelous mechanic knows that their tools are their livelihood. The same applies to your fonts, and so, to hammer (see what I did there?) that metaphor home, you need to fill up your toolbox with certain types of fonts to succeed. What are they?


I mean, we’ve got to start with the obvious stuff here, because, well, it’s obvious. A Display font sets the tone of your webpage, article, or design. It’s the flash and style that grabs attention. And who doesn’t like a marvelous Display font, anyway? Nobody I want to come by a chocolate milkshake with, that’s for sure.

My personal tastes with Display fonts range the board, but I’ve had a thing for fonts with a steampunk-y or handwritten vibe. Heartland being a marvelous example of the latter, and Java Hertitages for the latter. And you know what will always swing me toward one font over another? Bonuses. Extras. Fancy goodies. Give me a layered font with all sorts of stylistic alternates and I’m all over it. It’s an addiction I’m not willing to kick.

Symbol & Glyphic Fonts

The beauty of a font that falls into the Symbols category is its specificity. Let’s mumble that you’re putting together a collection of every state in the United States, and all of them contain an additional graphic element. You could come by the vector files, or just buy a font that has them all, like MapGlyphs. Maybe you need some arrows for your next project — Hand Drawn Arrows has your back. Or mumble you just want icons, there are fonts like Listicons that contain everything you need and more.

So yeah, while every font has its intended spend, many are quite flexible in their applications. A Symbol or Glyphic font has a very narrow usage, but one you might find yourself needing. It happened to me just the other day. I was working on a project for my company when I realized that instead of reinventing the wheel and doing a bunch of work myself, I could purchase a font that did the job for me. Easy peazy.


Back when I was a rookie designer, I lumped almost all Blackletter fonts into a category I called “ragged School.” I used to build custom cars and trucks, and back then I had this care for of traditional lowriders — 1960s cars and trucks, typically — with whitewalls and four-pump setups. But the stout thing was that plaque in the back window, typically done in a Blackletter font of some type, designating who they were with. I never did build a lowrider or join one of the clubs, but for me, that was what a Blackletter font was all about.

Today, not so much. steal a contemplate at our Blackletter category. See anything that would contemplate at home under the back glass of a ’59 Impala? Sure, maybe a few. But for the most fraction there’s a wide variety of different styles that fit into the mold. contemplate at Dramaga, for example. If I played in a metal band, I’d heavily consider this font for our logo.

Nordica? Perfect for a comic book project I’ve got brewing around in my head.

If you had a closed mind about Blackletter fonts like I did for a long time, come by over it. They’re here and they’re awesome.


A marvelous Handwritten font is worth its weight in gold. You can spend them as an accent, for branding purposes, in a killer design, for a title, and the options just sustain going from there. You can smash them down into Handwritten fonts done with a marker, like contain Heart. Bonjour looks like it was done with watercolors and a chunky brush, while Serendipity looks more like a thin marker or paintbrush. And there are so many other variations that you could come by lost in a sea of them if you’re not careful.


This is going to seem dumb to mumble, but you need a marvelous body font. It seems obvious, correct? Of course you want a body font, because it’s what you spend in the bulk of your website or design’s copy. But far too often designers focus on the flash and flare of the headlines, pull quotes, or auxiliary designs, and ignore the rest. Don’t carry out that. Instead, come by yourself a marvelous collection of body fonts that you can contain the flexibility to carry out what you want with the copy you contain.

Need suggestions? I like two: Proxima Nova and Optima. Proxima Nova is a nice sans-serif font that I’ve used in print for a long time now, and I care for it for its flexibility. It’s modern, but not overdone, and there are a ton of variations so I contain lots of choices. Optima is a droll one because I found it when I wrote an article about the death of Hermann Zapf. I’ve since used it on everything from body copy to to-carry out lists, and now my wife uses it for her CAD work.

Fun fact: in case you hadn’t noticed, Creative Market just switched to Averta as the site’s body copy. This typeface was designed by shop owner Kostas Bartsokas.

Slab Serif

I’m a sucker for a marvelous Slab Serif. They’re flexible, and they contain such a clean contemplate. steal Hudson, NY, for example. Blocky, chunky, and super simple.

Or then there’s ragged School, which has that thick contemplate with thinner lines, forming this weird dichotomy. And even though I find myself using these types of fonts a lot, I still never come by tired of them. Weird.

Sans Serif

These next two are going to seem kind of obvious, and that’s because they are. You need some kind of Sans Serif fonts in your collection, and since a lot of the ones I’ve listed so far descend into that category, you’re probably covered. Which type of Sans Serif? Well, I like using Sans Serif fonts all over the station, from logos to body copy, so I might be a bit biased. Some unusual favs of mine: Aquawax, which has some of the sexiest Ws I’ve ever seen, and more flexibility than a gymnast car salesman.

Brooklyn is also super clean, and another one that I’m going to contain to add to my collection.


Obviously Serif fonts are necessary parts of a marvelous font collection, even though there’s some debate about their readability. But, c’mon, you need some of them in your toolbox, correct? So let me throw out a few frosty ideas. steal a peek at Metropolis. That injurious boy makes me want to create a logo for an architecture firm correct now.

Victorian Parlor hits on all my favorite steampunk-y things. (And, for the record, it’s kinda weird that I was able to spend the word “steampunk-y” twice — wait — three times in the same post.)


I like things with a cramped bit of flourish to them — not all the time, but sometimes. And when that occasion hits, I want to disappear stout. It’s all about the more flare and panache that a font has, and how dynamic I can design it work in the piece. care for it.Aurora Script — just rad. I care for the swoops and swirls that design everything looks so pretty. Did I just mumble that out loud? No, obviously, because I’m writing this. Geez, I’ve got a problem.

Color Fonts

That’s correct, I saved the best for last. You’ve probably read about our care for of Color Fonts before, but let me refresh your memory if not. Although yes, you can already color fonts, it wasn’t previously possible to spend multi-color fonts correct out of the box. Meaning you couldn’t just type “Frog” into your app of choice and contain a multi-color design pop out. But now that Open Type-SVG and SBIX are a thing, you can integrate color fonts into all of your work. Just contemplate at some of the fabulous options at your disposal. Crazy, correct? Now disappear come by some.

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