Hidden in London street signs are stories waiting to be told. Their letterforms tell us these stories, which we often read on a subconscious level.
Taking a closer look at the city streets reveals how the new and preserved signs narrate three centuries of letterforms. These tell the social and cultural stories of an area with ‘secret’ clues hidden in their shapes.
The combinations of type found on signage reveal a great deal about a city, town or specific area. They reflect the social, economic and historical development of the area and create their own, unique typographic DNA.
How Type Can Tell the History of Your City A London designer leads a tour of her neighborhood signage
By Ellen Himelfarb for AIGA’s Eye on Design.
**BOOK HERE for the final two Dalston Type Safaris taking place this year**
“On a recent Tuesday evening, I followed Sarah Hyndman around Dalston, one of London’s most creative and fast-gentrifying neighborhoods. Her so-called Dalston Type Safari hadn’t sounded like the most exotic endeavor, to this local, at least. It resembled a safari insofar as we roamed among native creatures, some growling to themselves, and kept alert for dangerous beasts of the wheeled variety.
“Yet Hyndman, author of Why Fonts Matter and an expert on the psychology of typefaces, came armed with vast amounts of wisdom (and a tote stuffed with gummy treats, popcorn, and hand-pressed postcards, lending it all a staycation vibe). I think we all came away as enlightened as if we’d been abroad and back.”