New Letters bends the rules of typography in contrasting font Freya
- Lucy Bourton
- 7 June 2017
A few weeks ago an A3 sized package arrived at It’s Nice That. We assumed it was a print or a photograph, but inside was a printed type specimen of multiple pages, exuding the elegance of New Letters’ most recent font design Freya.
German type foundry New Letters was founded in 2015 by Armin Brenner and Markus John, merging the lines between typography, graphic design and art direction “with a link between cultural and commercial projects”. Working within “the fields of culture, art and fashion for both digital and print media,” the consistent element in New Letters’ portfolio is impactful typography, “juxtaposing classic type design and great attention to detail, with a modern approach to structure and eclectic use for different projects,” they explain.
Freya embodies this design ethos, “inspired by classic Antique serif typefaces”. However influential typefaces such as Caslon or Didot were designed three decades ago and “while loving those classic typefaces because of their distinctive functionality, we were inspired to reinterpret them in our very own style,” says New Letters. The result is a typeface that has personality while remaining traditional in its aesthetic. “While concentrating on these ideas and influences the main focus was to keep the functionality of Freya — it has a strong varying thickness between the thick and thin strokes and therefore plays a lot with contrast.”
As a font Freya bends the rules typography of slightly: “the whole idea of contrast comes together in different weights of the typeface family, which are connected through the same thickness of all horizontal lines”. However, functionality remains the key aim following “a consistent gradient of styles to ensure best functionality for the headlines and text,” explain New Letters. “Its features are carefully balanced to create a modern and novel appearance.”
About the Author
Lucy (she/her) joined It’s Nice That as a staff writer in July 2016 after graduating from Chelsea College of Art. In January 2019 she was made deputy editor and in November 2021, became a senior editor predominantly working on It’s Nice That's partnerships. Feel free to get in contact with Lucy about creative projects for the site or potential partnerships.