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Display Typefaces: 13 Google Fonts with a Ton of Personality

There's a font flavor for any person, at any time or place, and in any situation.

Still, most people choose a typeface based simply on what they like the look of.

Choosing based on your preference alone might cause some uppity-types to give your text the side-eye...

...but that doesn't mean you shouldn't inject some fun into your text once in a while.

The trick to any good design is balance. So pick a legible font for the body copy—that is, all the paragraphs—and let your display text have all the fun.

Typefaces 101: What Is Display Text?

Display typefaces turn special words into visual art forms. Headings, titles, and pull-quotes are often set in a display type. In print design, single words or letters might be set in a display font. Just don't forget to make them big enough to be legible and to create a clear visual hierarchy in your content.

"Display typefaces turn special words into visual art forms." Click to Tweet

Now let's get to the meat of this post ...

13 Google Fonts You Can Add to Your Website

(Plus Where and How to Use Them Effectively)

abril fatface magazine font
1. Abril Fatface

With hairline serifs and a bold stroke, Abril Fatface is perfect for magazines or style blogs.

Feelings: elegance, bold, 1930s, fashion, feminine and masculine, poster, calligraphic

bigshot google font
2. Bigshot One

Bigshot One has funky details that separate it from its woodblock cousins. This typeface would feel at home on the label of a homebrew.

Feelings: the Old West, poster, woodblock, unique, quirky, country

Cinzel google font
3. Cinzel

Trajan Pro is one of the most common typefaces used in corporate literature and signage. Cinzel takes that timeless (but let's face it, kinda boring) font and adds some adventurous swashes that evoke Mediterranean piracy. Google Fonts has three weights to choose from.

Feelings: adventure, masculine, globetrotter, travel, seafaring, ancient, antiquity

cormorant web font
4. Cormorant Upright

Cormorant is a typeface coming in a full family of fonts. Cormorant Upright is the most notable for its upright cursive. What makes that so special? Well, usually you see scripts with attached letters or slanted italics. Upright cursives are more rare—and more readable—than italics or scripts.

Feelings: letter-writing, antique, elegant, personal, feminine

Fugaz One web font
5. Fugaz One

With a slight slant, Fugaz One feels like it's ready for a midcentury racetrack or speedy diner.

Feelings: 1950s, advertisements, masculine, fast, dining, restaurants

glass antiqua feminine web font
6. Glass Antiqua

Just as timeless and artsy as knitting or embroidery, Glass Antiqua was popular after the turn of the century but feels equally at home after the turn of the millennium. For a less feminine and thicker font, try Port Lligat Slab.

Feelings: feminine, creative, crafty, friendly, happy, youthful, 1910s, 1920s

gravitas one uk advertising font
7. Gravitas One

A fat face modern like Abril Fatface, Gravitas One has less serious, more plump proportions. Use instead of Abril when you need a wider poster font or if you want to get attention without looking too extravagant.

Feelings: poster, 1800s, advertisement, masculine, unfussy

IM Fell old-fashioned web font
8. IM Fell

Just say "No" to Papyrus. IM Fell will give you an old-world feel without the baggage that weighs down Papyrus. But look out—if people start applying IM Fell everywhere willy-nilly, without thought or reservation, then this font will become just as tired as Papyrus, or even as Comic Sans. 

Feelings: antique, 1600s, 1700s, letter-writing, historical

katibeh antique web font
9. Katibeh

Katibeh is a gorgeous font fusing archaic and contemporary Arabic scripts. Use the Latin alphabet for a hand-brushed feel that will be timeless even after the contemporary brush fonts go out of style.

Feelings: elegance, antique, globetrotter,  stroke, feminine and masculine, balance, legible, contemporary, brush

New Rocker display web font
10. New Rocker

New Rocker is a blackletter that will look great for hardcore text, tattoos, or medieval writing with a heavy-metal twist

Feelings: quirky, metal, grunge, masculine, dark, medieval, German, Old English

pirata one web font
11. Pirata One

For a gothic without the grunge, Pirata One is a blackletter typeface made for screen resolutions and print.

Feelings: globetrotter, renaissance, medieval, classic, religious

Port Lligat playful web font
12. Port Lligat Slab

Use Port Lligat Slab as a display font when regular serifs just won't do, and you need a bit more of a bounce or groove to the text.

Feelings: contemporary, playful, sweet, youthful, artistic, warm, happy

squada web font
13. Squada One

For a timeless collegiate feel, try Squada One, a geometric display font that is reminiscent of pennants and letterman's jackets. Use in ALL CAPS for the old-college try, or use the lowercase for a more contemporary feel.

Feelings: timeless, 1940s, vintage, scholarly, education, geometric, blocky, narrow, condensed

What do you think—does your website have a mood, tone, or feeling that matches one of the typefaces above, or would something just as prominent but not quite so quirky fit your business better? Let us know in the comments.

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Decorative Google Fonts

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