Default letters vs Stylistic Sets

Michael Rafailyk
Michael Rafailyk Posts: 143
edited June 2022 in Lettering Critiques
Hello TypeDrawers!

This is the first time I'm asking for a critique. Honestly, I should have done in an earlier works as well, but I was terribly ashamed, since I am a beginner and so on.

In this work I try to convey the spirit of the Early Cyrillic alphabet (which was closer to Greek), and I try to understand where the edge of readability is. The letters like E, F, e, f have radical forms. For example letter F combines both Latin and Cyrillic forms. I know that many in principle will not approve of such experiments.

The question is what in your opinion is better to set as default letters, and what should be transferred to stylistic sets?
I can't find that topic, but someone wrote that the default letters should be recognizable.


  • Craig Eliason
    Craig Eliason Posts: 1,416
    At least to some extent, all letters should be recognizable! Here I’d say a stylistic set isn’t much use: the top Ff with the round elements are too illegible to use at all, and the bottom Ee with more conventional shapes are incongruously boring. 

    Beginner type designers vastly overestimate how interested most font users are in stylistic alternatives. It can be a powerful feature to build into fonts for sure, but overuse sometimes signals either that the type designer is too timid to make strong decisions or too unsure about just what their font is for. 
  • Michael Rafailyk
    @Craig Eliason Thanks for the honest response.