Need a typeface for a virtual coffeehouse

oscaralexander's picture

Hello all! I'm a new member here, but have been impressed with the quality of the advice given here for some time now. I am sorry to barge in with a question, but hope you can forgive me and help me on my quest. Thanks!

Short version: I'm looking for a typeface that says "warm and cozy coffeehouse/pub"

Now, I have recently started working on a personal project (non-commercial) that can best be described a virtual coffeehouse or pub. An online hang-out, if you will. The place is called Oldenburg's, named after Ray Oldenburg, the professor behind the third place theory, stating that every person needs a neutral place other than home (first) and work (second) to socialize with his community.

I have decided to blog every step of the way and have now officially entered the stage of identity design. I'm really, really torn between a pub-like Copperplate or a—more personal—script for the logo typeface. In any case, it should be timeless, as if it could've been around for decades already.

My question to the hive mind: what kind of logo typeface would you associate with a warm, cozy, homely "third place"? My latest post has a moodboard that might inspire ideas. And I know it's subjective as hell ;)

Your opinion is very much appreciated!

http://www.oldenburgs.org/

Indra Kupferschmid's picture

Welcome!
Good mood board, I wish more people looking for advice would add one.
A Clarendon / Slab Serif comes to my mind. One with some nice little imperfections, like Volta, Egizio, Belizio etc (browse similar typefaces for more). I wouldn’t go for a more wood-type-y, decorated font, nor for the obvious candidate these days, the condensed grot (Titling Gothic of the like).

oscaralexander's picture

@kupfers Thank you! I was actually considering a Clarendon-esque typeface. Not in the last place because it was adopted by Starbucks some years ago (and must still be associated with it in the minds of some). I really like the cheerful, upright ear on Belizio's lowercase g!

I also found Baskerville Bold a nice fit, in part because of its open, "smiling" e, but perhaps a bit too generic.

eliason's picture

Farao is still quirkier (with a still more cheerful, upright /g/ ear) if that's a direction you want to go.

oscaralexander's picture

@eliason Nice suggestion, but a bit too funky for where I'm heading :) Thanks!

oscaralexander's picture

@frode Loving the non-Grotesque version, all-caps :D

sevag's picture

Rosewood Fill comes to mind. Also, check out the following: Brothers,
Brevia, Rhode.

SB

oscaralexander's picture

Would anyone be able to identify this typeface — or name one with similarly recognizable capital O.

Source: http://www.omfgco.com/

Indra Kupferschmid's picture

This is almost definitely custom lettering — the ffi, the fg — but also looks a bit weird and unbalanced, for example the M.
If you still want to go into the Baskerville direction: My favourite transitional typeface with crispy display variants and awesome swash-alternates is Farnham. Maybe a good starting point to make a logo like this yourself?

oscaralexander's picture

Ah, it's Latienne — http://new.myfonts.com/fonts/urw/latienne/

Not too fond of most its other characters...

Indra Kupferschmid's picture

Oh wonderful! I like that typeface a lot.
But lets say — it’s something mimicking something like Latienne. Almost nothing in the logo fits the font.

oscaralexander's picture

The thing with "social" websites is that I'll probably need an icon — preferably derived from the logotype — that works at 16×16. So far, I haven't seen any O's as distinct and friendly as Latienne's...

I might actually consider pairing it with a more suitable typeface for the remaining characters, just so I can hold on to the O and do something cheesy like this (to the non-italic variant, rather)

Frode Bo Helland's picture

But you can always modify an O in another typeface to look like that, and probably better!

Indra Kupferschmid's picture

Oh! It took me four glances to get it. Mh…
I’m with Frode: choose a good, fitting typefaces you really like and make your own swash-b-bean-ear-cup O-logo.

Frode Bo Helland's picture

Aaaah. It’s a cup. That’s a really cool idea! I’d spend some serious effort getting it just right. And maybe try to make the handle more in tune with the rest of the O.

oscaralexander's picture

Haha, sorry guys, this was whipped up in 30 seconds with the brush tool (Photoshop) in the OMFG logo above.

Obviously, for the final version I would not use the italic variant and probably spend a night pulling beziers on the cup ;)

eliason's picture

FWIW the medial swash variant of my Ambicase Modern resembles that a bit:

R.'s picture

The OMFG Co. logo is based on Hoefler Text Black Italic.

oscaralexander's picture

@R. Spot on! I emailed those guys and they replied that it was, indeed, Hoefler Text. Although it's fairly obvious that the O is in fact Latienne.

Still haven't decided on anything though. This (self-imposed) 16×16 icon requirement is killing all my ideas :(

kentlew's picture

> Although it's fairly obvious that the O is in fact Latienne.

Oh really?

oscaralexander's picture

Oh wow, haha. I take everything back! :)

For those interested: did some logo sketches the other day. See second post on the blog: http://www.oldenburgs.org/ Still not sure whether to go for a wordmark or fix that coffee-cup-O-symbol. Hm.

oscaralexander's picture

Hi again!

I've been beating myself up over this typeface for weeks. There are just so many directions that could work. However, I want the logo to feel like the place has been around for a while and withstood the tests of time. So, I ended up with these two and I really, really can't decide. I'd love to hear your opinion.

Which of these two says "cozy coffeehouse" more than the other?

Thanks a bunch!

riccard0's picture

#2. But please use a real apostrophe.

Té Rowan's picture

#1 looks a bit blah to me, while #2 is more 'that old cinema downtown'. Y'know, Fritz Lang's "Metropolis" and a more-or-less forgotten Wurlitzer organ.

Trevor Baum's picture

Neither of those really say "cozy coffeehouse" to me - more like a deco cinema or something. What about a warm, slabby humanist serif like Dolly, Rooney, or Livory?

nina's picture

I think the reason these are more reminiscent of old cinemas than coffeehouses might to a large part simply lie in the color scheme. Type looks pretty nice to me. #1 is more beer than coffee perhaps.

William Berkson's picture

You might have a look at Minah also. It has a lot of "flavor" and is well executed.

Té Rowan's picture

To me, 'cozy coffeehouse' is more like a bold italic Goudy Sans and a colour scheme of cream white, milk-in-coffee pale brown and coffee brown.

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