Friday, January 10, 2014

Friday Favorite #2

Today I am sharing with you some of my favorite places to find free fonts.  I will admit to having a slight font addiction.  I will buy fonts over shoes, or clothes (for myself), and probably over food if I didn’t have to feed my family.  So sad, I know.

favorite places to find free fonts

It is really gratifying when I can find free fonts that I love and can use in my projects.  Since I use my fonts to make things I sell and share on my blog for free, I have to be very careful that the font I am using is okay to use commercially.  If you are using the font for personal use, then you don’t have to be so careful.

I have used a font manager, Font Expert, for several years to keep my commercial fonts in a separate group from my personal fonts.  The website for Font Expert is disappointing, but I am very happy with the software.  Font Expert allows me to categorize my fonts into groups and makes it easy to find the font I want to use in my project.

Here is a screenshot of Font Expert.  On the left are my groups and on the right are the fonts in the group that is open.  You can click on the image to enlarge it.

Font Expert screenshot

Another thing that I love about Font Expert is that I can activate and deactivate the font from the program.  If I were to install all of my fonts into my Windows Font folder, it would make my computer very slow.  This way I can just activate the fonts I want to use in my project and when I am done, deactivate them.  One downside of this, is that the Silhouette software will not find an activated font, it must be installed on your computer.  That is an easy fix with Font Expert.  Instead of activating it, I install it for the time I need it and then just go back and click uninstall when I am finished with it.  It doesn’t take any more work, it is just a little inconvenient when I forget to install the font before opening the software as the font has to be installed before the software is opened.

Wow, so this post has become all about my font manager, so let’s move on to my favorite places to find fonts.

Font Squirrel—Font Squirrel has great fonts and they are all 100% commercial free.  They are very good about updating their site and are always adding new fonts.

Dafont—All the fonts at dafont are free, just be careful to notice if they are for personal use if you are going to use them for commercial purposes.

Kevin and Amanda—You will find really adorable handwritten fonts here for free.  You can use them for both personal and commercial use.  If you do use them for commercial use, you must display their blog button on your side bar or purchase their commercial use license.

Google fonts—Google fonts are free for personal or commercial use.  This site is designed for the fonts to be used on websites.  To use them for print, add the font(s) you like to your collection.  Then scroll down to the bottom of the page and click “use”.  Choose the style of fonts that you want, and then click the “down arrow” above the choose box.  This will give you the option of downloading the fonts to your computer.

Google fonts screenshot

Above is a screenshot of where to find the down arrow.

Lost Type—This site has some really fantastic fonts.  It is name-your-own-price, and you can type in $0 and download the font.  All proceeds go directly to the designer of the font, so if you really like it and plan to use it a lot (especially for commercial use), it would be kind to leave a donation.

I am always getting emails asking where I find my fonts, so I hope you have found this post helpful. I know there are many other sites to find free fonts, but these are my go to places. 

I would love to hear your ideas on what you would like to see me share on my Friday Favorites posts.  Got an idea?  Leave it in my comments or shoot me an email.


Ginny Maxam said...

Hi Karen! Great Post !! I have been struggling with my fonts over the week and was looking for a font manager!! Thank you for this great info and I understand about being a fontaphile!! God Bless,

Unknown said...

Thank you for sharing. I can see myself using these over and over again.

Jennifer said...

Wow Karen, it's amazing all the work that you go through to make your incredible Word Art!
Thank you for sharing your sources!
Have a beautiful day!

Kiwi said...

Thanks so much Karen,some great fonts! AnnB

Teresa Arsenault said...

Wow. This sounds really complex. You sure do put a lot of effort into your word art - and it shows. :)

Debbie said...

Thanks for sharing these links!! Always on the lookout for nice fonts.

I'm always a little apprehensive that I will mess up with personal vs commercial, so I've tried to add -PER to the name when downloading those for personal use only.

FontExpert looks neat, so I'm off to check it out.