Looking for a polished, distinctive free font to use in your brand’s communication pieces? Whether you’re working on a print or web-based project, Google Fonts are a unique asset for those projects with leaner budgets. Let’s take a look at some of their advantages:
- Cost-efficient. Aside from being free, these fonts are also hosted and served by Google, so there’s no need to store the fonts in your own server — unless you want/need to for technical reasons.
- Quick implementation. Google gives you CSS and HTML code that’s ready to copy and plug into your website. You can also download the fonts for desktop use.
- Multilingual. Because of the platform’s global reach, most Google Fonts include special symbols for various languages.
- Open source & free to use. Every font in Google’s catalog is released under an open source license (usually the SIL Open Font License), which allows you to use them on any website, whether it’s commercial or personal.
Why Google Fonts & Why Now
Free fonts have come a long way. As recently as 5 or 7 years ago, some of us avoided these kinds of fonts because they had severe limitations when it came down to custom brand work. Many of these limitations are simply not there anymore.
On one hand, the free fonts that were available back then often included a small number of styles. They lacked diversity, making it very difficult to create appealing brand typography work. Fortunately, that’s no longer the case: there are Google Fonts with as many as 18 variants!
On the other hand, you ran into the obvious issue of similarity: because they’re freely available, these fonts are also widely used. They immediately suffered the consequences of “system font” fatigue: you saw them so often that they lost their appeal. However, as Google Fonts’ catalog nears 1,000 type families, I think it’s safe to say that we’re facing a much more diverse landscape where brands can create combinations that feel fresh and distinctive.
All of that evolution brings us to this very article. My goal with this piece is to share 10 curated type pairs that you can easily recreate downloading free Google Fonts. I hope these combinations inspire you to experiment with the site’s vast (and growing!) catalog.
Caudex & Libre Baskerville
2. Frank Ruhl Libre & Muli
3. Overpass & Noto Serif SC
4. Rufina & Fahkwang
5. Radley & Quattrocento Sans
6. Prata & Tenor Sans
7. Zilla Slab & Arsenal
8. Prompt & Lora
9. Tenor Sans & Spectral
10. Vollkorn & Work Sans
Infuse your next branded web or print piece with a touch of sophistication using any of these 10 type duos. Are there any other Google Fonts that have made it to your list of favorites? Do share in the comments section below.