Custom Fonts & Pattern Templates

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Special details can help personalize your brand.

It is frequently (always?) about the details! Whether it is a knit design that includes a touch of twisted rib on an otherwise all-over stockinette sweater or a document that uses a special font for headings while the body text remains in Verdana, little details can really make something more memorable. Those same details can also help personalize your brand.

I’m currently working with a client who has a certain aesthetic that includes more personalized and handcrafted touches. To support her vision, I’m going to create a font from her handwriting that we can use in the knit pattern template I’m developing for her.

While there are several methods and programs for creating fonts from handwriting, I’ve chosen to use Calligraphr because I think it presents fewer tech hurdles. Most folks, regardless of their technical skill level, will be able to create a decent looking font from their handwriting with this program.

A brief overview of the process of creating a font from your handwriting using Calligraphr, installing that font on a Mac, and using it in MS Word to write a pattern.

Remember: Special touches in your patterns – your own handwriting or hand-drawn images are two examples – can really set your patterns apart and make them memorable. As I experiment with more ways to add those types of touches, I will share them here with you.

I’ve experimented a bit more and, while I’m thrilled with how easy the program is, I do have a very strong recommendation: Do this entirely digitally, if possible!!

For my own handwritten font, I downloaded the template to Adobe Acrobat and wrote my letters using a digital pen and Acrobat’s editing mode. When I uploaded that file, I had virtually no editing to do. My characters lined up nicely and I had no smudges, smears, or lines to edit out. The process was smooth and quick!

For my client, I printed the template because she prefers paper and pen. Align characters in a paper version was a challenge because it was difficult to see the helper lines. Additionally, to upload her handwriting, my options were to photograph or scan the template file. This introduced many unwanted digital artifacts. The upshot was, I spent a few hours editing each character.

I’ve learned quite a bit about the editing process in Calligraphr. Next time, things will go quicker, even if I do have to use the paper method again. 🙂

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