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Design Trends - Serif Rising

It would be a true statement to say 95% of all websites use Sans-serif fonts. They are everywhere Arial, Trebuchet and Verdana have become the go to font for web designers for years. There is good reason the web has gone this direction. Sans-serif fonts are very professional, they render clean in Windows and Mac, and they have a modern feel. With the benefits come some disadvantages, they can feel rigid, color can look odd on them, and everyone else on the web is using them.

In the last year we have started to notice more and more sites are using Serif fonts. One example is The New York Times. Their site is predominantly Georgia with a little bit of Arial mixed in. The use of Serif fonts allows the designer to explore new realms of web design. I like to think that each Serif font has its own personality. I see Times as distinguished in its lowercase format, but when you go uppercase it has a more modern feel. Georgia has a more laid back feeling. It could even be called fun when it is bold and italicized. The creative possibilities are limitless when you incorporate size and color.

Some consideration needs to be taken when using Serif fonts. It can become unreadable at smaller font sizes. Avoid anything below 12px. Italics can break the font apart, especially in Windows. Finally Serif fonts are not appropriate for all websites. Consider your client and end user.


04/13/2010 6:27pm
So odd that after so many years - the list of websafe fonts hasn't changed much. Interesting read.

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