HELP: Serif font to accompany Neutra

graphx7's picture

Hello all -

Working on a small publication that needs to have a bit of a mid-century modern feel.
Using Neutra for some of the heads and subheads, and I'm looking for a good font to pair with that for the body text - preferably a serif.

There are many large blocks of copy throughout the piece, so I was looking for something with a decent x-height for readability.
I'm not liking the feel of several traditional faces: Schoolbook, Clarendon, Garamond, etc.

Wondered if anyone might have some suggestions for a fresh serif with a lovely italic...I'd be most appreciative!

Nick Shinn's picture

FF Celeste

Alvin Martinez's picture

While there are many ways to build a type palette, one approach is to look into other typefaces designed by the same foundry. Sometimes this will give you clues toward a possible solution. Eames Century Modern (created by House as well) could be a good match for Neutra, evoking some of the attitude and personality associated with mid-century design stalwarts Charles and Ray Eames. It has an x-height that lends itself to small text sizes and the italics are very attractive in use.

I should mention that Eames has a very distinct personality. This may not suit your purposes if you are looking for a more subdued serif.

http://www.houseind.com/fonts/eames

Neutra also has a complimentary slab version as well, which would not work as effectively as Eames in large blocks of small copy, but may work in a supporting role if you want to give your publication a bit more texture without being busy. Be forewarned that adding a third typeface and making it work is never an easy task to accomplish.

http://www.houseind.com/fonts/neutrafaceslab

Also look at historical references of work done during that time. That can also help refine your choices in styles since you are looking to reflect that era.

. . . . . .

Building a typographic palette requires a lot of research, experimentation, and looking at the finer details, but I look at it as one of the more enjoyable aspects of typography.

~ A

graphx7's picture

Appreciation to both Nick and Alvin - I was not familiar with FF Celeste, and when Alvin reminded me of Eames, I thought "of course!" Great idea! Off to do some test paragraphs....

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