It’s all in the name

Expectant parents agonise over the name that they will bestow upon their child. When the gender of the child is not yet known, the agony doubles. The sex of the child is not the only factor that determines the name. There are other considerations to factor in. How unique should the name be without becoming ridiculous and leading to bullying? Does it have any religious associations? What languages will it possibly need to work in? And last but never least – will the grandparents approve the name. Selecting a name is a minefield that requires careful navigation, and quite often leads to hearty arguments between the expectant couple.

Choosing a font name is no less agonising. After months of designing and engineering a font family, getting it right for all the possible uses, it will need to be released. So it needs a name. As with naming a child, many factors have to be considered. We like the font name to evoke a sense of semblance with the expression of the design. We always say the name out loud to ensure its sound is pleasing. We consider whether it can be easily pronounced by people speaking different languages and that there are no undesirable meanings.

Throughout these explorations we also have to bear in mind that the length of the font name is technically restricted, particularly when it is designed to live in legacy environments. Font style descriptions such as Extra Bold must be included in the font name length. And lastly, when everyone is happy with a chosen name, we must research to find out whether it’s available as a font name. If it hasn’t been taken already we’ll apply to register the Trademark.

In early March we launched a new font, Albero. We agonised, tested and we researched and we were certain that it was all clear. Shortly after launch, however, one of our industry competitors alerted us to a potential naming conflict with one of their fonts. Albero had only just been launched so it was an easy and sensible decision to withdraw it from our website to avoid any conflict or confusion. The font is now available again as Bligh, another great addition to our font library.

This episode illustrates that font names must be taken seriously, as much as naming a child is a serious undertaking. There is more to a name than just the name.

Bligh is now available on Download your free trials now.

Bruno Maag


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