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What typography trends are predicted for 2018 and how can you use them?
By Sarah Hyndman

Keeping up with trends in typography can give you inspiration that keeps your design ideas fresh, or can enable you to differentiate yourself from (or align yourself with) your competitors. It also keeps you up to date with the exciting innovations happening in technology that could transform the future of visual communication.

Based on the predictions of trend forecasters, experts and our observations, these are the top trends that we predict will influence typography in 2018 and beyond. We will take a look at each trend, the sector it is likely to appear in, and explain how you could use it.

1. Vernacular2. Neutral & universal3. Personality4. The return of flares & serifs5. Colour fonts6. Variable fonts7. Fashion / 8. Trend forecasters

Trend 1. Vernacular
SECTOR: ADVERTISING

HOW TO USE THIS TREND: Select typefaces that have visual references pulled from a particular era or genre to add layers of meanings to your words, to trigger nostalgia, or to provoke a debate. You could include obscure references to be recognised only by people in the know.

Typography featuring vernacular references pulled from a particular era or genre. These are intended to add layers of meaning or embed ideas from popular culture into the typeface design, sometimes adding clues or reference points to be recognised by those in the know. These styles are often intended to be ephemeral and conceived with the thinking of an instant-impact advertising campaign, rather than a brand identity built for longevity. Type designer Bruno Maag explained at a recent Type Thursday meet up that this reflects the trend he sees towards ad agency-led rebrands, which produce results designed for impact but not long-term functionality, and he suggests that advertising agencies are increasingly taking over the traditional role of the branding agency.

Example: Formula 1 rebrand by Wieden+Kennedy
Use type styles with nostalgic references in the details to appeal to a new audience.

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REPUTATION TAYLOR

Taylor Swift, Blackletter and typography-fuelled gossip
By Sarah Hyndman

The announcement of Taylor Swift’s new album, Reputation, is a great example of typography used as a visual code. It has resulted in a furore of debate on social media that Swift is reprising her well-known feud with Kanye West, yet if you look behind her you see her name repeated over and over in the styles of the media mastheads and logos—from high brow to gossip tabloids. This is a clever double meaning, and one that is inherently meta, because it is fuelling the media machine to obsess over a reference that ultimately appears to be about itself.

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Vetements, Brioni and Kanye Agree: It’s Gothic Time
New York Times, August 9th
By Max Berlinger

“It’s been used for some of the most sacred texts in the Western world,” said Michael Bierut, a partner at the design firm Pentagram and a senior critic at the Yale School of Art. “At the same time, it’s used by biker gangs, street gangs, heavy-metal groups and death-metal groups. It seems like Satan has come to own it more than God.”

Thanks to its longevity, the typeface has accrued a wide range of cultural associations and the versatility to convey both a sense of reverential authority and rebellion. “I think there’s always that double edge, a duality that goes on in everything,” said Sarah Hyndman, the author of “Why Fonts Matter.”

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