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How to choose a Font for your Labels

5 months ago

The type of lettering you choose is crucial to your label design. But with so many fonts to choose from (there are nearly 50 on the Avery WePrint design tool) how do you get it right?

Here are some simple tips to help you achieve the right balance between style and practicalities when choosing fonts or typefaces for your labels.

What messages do fonts give?

Fonts are very expressive and can say a lot about your company, brand or product in a subliminal way. So the first step is to consider what will go with your product or brand and what will appeal to your target market.

Serif fonts have the small decorative lines at the end of strokes. They give a classic, traditional, upmarket, respectable, authoritative, literary, classy and warm look e.g. Times New Roman, Garamond.

Sans serif fonts are generally more readable, especially in small print. Clean and modern, these fonts signify innovation, neutrality, reliability and professionalism, e.g. Arial, HelveticaNeue.

Script fonts – for a handwritten look or elegant, ‘joined-up’ writing, these fonts are often used for a natural, rustic or feminine feel

Display fonts – with fancy and fun designs, these fonts can evoke an era, a theme or a vibe and need to be used carefully

The two types of font above work best for headings or short messages and should be avoided for long paragraphs or extended text:If you’ve already decided on a font for your logo, you may be able to carry that font through in headings and short messages.

How many fonts should you choose?

We generally recommend up to three different fonts per label:

  1. Product name
  2. Brief description, message or headings
  3. Information and small print

Which fonts will work for your labels?

Depending on the look you want to achieve, here are our font suggestions:

  • Simple, sophisticated, chic – choose classic, elegant fonts, e.g. BodoniAnt, Garamond, Times New Roman, Neuton.
  • Homemade, rustic, natural, wholesome – go for fonts with a loose handwritten look, e.g. Waiting for the Sunrise, Segeo Print, Andy
  • Feminine, soft, elegant – look for orderly script fonts such as Bella Donna or Dorchester Script.
  • Playful, youthful, personal, fun – choose fonts that are out of the ordinary, e.g. Gasoline Alley, Sacramento.
  • Edgy, non-conformist – find a font with a difference and irregular letters such as Special Elite, AmaticSC.
  • Modern, bold, strong – look for an angular, uniform font, e.g. Report Rg, Gill Sans, Open Sans.
  • Old school, light-hearted, masculine – ‘slab fonts’ with blocky serifs have their own unique charm, check out Falstaff, Falstaff Festival, Ashley Crawford, Inlove.

All the fonts mentioned here are available on the Avery WePrint design tool.

Most of them fall into more than one of the categories listed above, so it’s well worth checking them all out. To start designing your Avery WePrint labels, click here.

Font or typeface, which is correct?

These days they mean the same thing, but there used to be a difference. When printing involved painstakingly setting metal letters (the type) in frames, the typeface was the name of the style of letters used and a font was a set of blocks of type in a particular size and weight.

Label font do's and don'ts

  • Do check your chosen font for readability from a distance if your labelled products will be on display.
  • Do make sure the thin lines are visible and that the numeral 1 and capital I are not likely to be confused.
  • Don’t use a font that looks like a major brand’s logo – think of Disney, Coca Cola, Nike, Google or Lego, for example.
  • Do experiment – with the Avery WePrint online design tool you can try different variations online, and you can get just a couple of sheets printed to see what works best.

Find out how easy it is to design your labels using our online design tool – read more.

Make your labels even more effective by using the power of emotion in your label design – read the blog.


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