Febuari Critique

Hi Everyone,

I’ve been quietly lurking on the forum and working (on Janueri), but today I hoped you could have a look at a typeface I’ve drawn into a first draft. I’m looking to publish it soon, but not before I had at least one other person look over it - I’ve never worked a font to this stage and would very much appreciate an extra eye to see if I had not misunderstood any steps during the design.

This is Febuari, a text-face serif that is drawn with a subtle stem tilt and a continuous stroke mark. With the exception of the diagonal stress Febuari’s ornaments references modern and transitional serifs. Febuari’s Italic is drawn to contrast better with the already tilting Roman by being drawn to reference brush strokes. The typeface’s intended use would be for body text that would be more feature than extended text such as poems or magazine articles. It will come in Regular, Caption, Semi-Bold, and Bold with matching Italic weights.

Thanks again for your time. Any and all of your input is welcome.

Regular PDF
Italic PDF
Bold PDF
Bold Italic PDF



  • Very cool to see this. A few thoughts:
    - It's evident that the italic pairing is the big bold move here. I'm not sure I'm sold that they go together. (Specimens with mixed roman/italic would help decide.) In concept I think I'd be prepared to accept a brushy italic with a more pennish roman, but this italic, beyond having that different character, is also pretty spotty where the roman is so evenly colored, so I can't entirely dismiss the feeling of mismatch I get.
    - roman /z/ in both weights look a little too upright or even left-leaning
    - roman /a/ in both weights has quite a small aperture compared to letters like /c/e/s/.
    - I wonder if a little more weight in the crossbar of roman /e/ would be useful.
    - the overall color of bold /s/ is good but it may carry too much of the weight in the spine, and not enough in the terminals. Spine of bold /S/ looks similarly thick.
    - It might be worth trying out thicker crossbars for /f/ and /t/ in all the fonts.
    - Bold /R/ reads dark. Similarly, counters of bold /P/ and /B/ could be wider.
    - Are all the /W/s a touch wide?
    - Top right of /g/ loops may be too thick in both bold fonts.
  • I don’t have time to crit the specifics, but I really dig this on a macro conceptual level. You’ve managed to refresh that goopy old printed text look that Goudy did so well!
  • Thanks for your replies Craig and James,

    Craig, I’ve made a PDF with a sample of glyphs you suggested revising and a few paragraphs set with mixed roman and italic.

    - With the /z/ I tilted the glyphs a little. I still have the option of distributing the weight if it still looks too rigid.
    - With the roman /a/ I opened the aperture by +/- 20/1000 points.
    - I’ve added about 10/1000 points to the crossbar of all /e/s,
    - I’ve also redistributed some weight to bold /s/ and /S/ as you suggested.
    - /f/ and /t/ in all fonts have about 10/1000 points thicker crossbars.
    - /W/ did look wide in all fonts after you pointed it out. They are now 30-40/1000 points more condensed.
    - Counters on bold /R/P/B/ have been widened, should I extend the counters further out?
    - With /g/’s loops I assumed you meant both loops were thick on the top right, not just one of the two loops. I’ve compensated by thinning the strokes.

    James, I appreciate you saying so! I have a small book I’m setting with Febuari as a test and will upload the photos of the results soon.

    Edits 11 oct 14
    Bold Italic
  • - With /g/’s loops I assumed you meant both loops were thick on the top right, not just one of the two loops. I’ve compensated by thinning the strokes.
    Sorry for the ambiguity. I was referring to top right of the lower bowl of the letter. (I used plural because I saw it in bold /g/ and bold italic /g/.)
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