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Exclusive Excerpt from Hooked on Words

Book Club Exclusive!

Excerpt from Chapter 3: Designing with Words

Designing with Type

Now we will talk a bit about designing with type. See Chapter 4 for lots of detail about typefaces. But remember this most significant fact: Words communicate. Using type in a rug design can really get your point across—as you have already seen in the many examples of rugs in earlier chapters of this book. And, most of the rugs we have showcased use only one kind of type in each rug. But there are other options. You could use two kinds of type (or more) in a single rug design. But how would you know which typefaces work together?

In pages that are designed for print, there is usually more than one element. Even in a research document of plain body copy, you typically see headings and subheads or at least a page number. Author Robin Williams tells us, "Within these dynamics—on a page or in life—a relationship is established that is either concordant, conflicting, or contrasting." Remember these words.

A concordant relationship occurs when you use only one type family without much variety in style, size, or weight. It can look quiet, but the result is harmonious. It is concordant.

A conflicting relationship occurs when you combine typefaces that are similar—but not the same. The similarities are disturbing. Why? Because, visually, the type is not the same (concordant), and it is not different (contrasting). The result: conflict.

A contrasting relationship occurs when you combine different typefaces that are clearly distinct from one another. You can create a visually appealing design that attracts attention, and it can be really exciting.

The rug shown below, Welcome Friends, illustrates a contrasting relationship of type. The word "Welcome" was drawn based on a script typeface called Heart and Soul. The word "Friends" was set in Futura Medium. The result is that they are very different and create contrast.

Check out this article as it will appear in the book below, plus a sneak peek at the Table of Contents!


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