Ryan Boudreaux hand picks a showcase of readily available (and mostly free) holiday fonts for any creative greetings or special projects that may come up this season.
With the holidays upon us it's always nice to sit back and relax with family, friends, and coworkers, and in some cases, clients and customers, as we reflect on the past year's successes and then focus on making our plans for the New Year which is also fast approaching. And while we celebrate our holiday season of giving, I thought it would be a fun treat to review several fonts that add the Christmas spirit to any holiday project. Most of the fonts are free for personal or non-profit use, and some have licensing, restrictions, and/or a small fee or suggested donation for commercial use.
The twenty fonts I've selected are listed by name in alphabetical order and linked to their download source along with a sample of each displayed underneath. Most of the fonts are typically downloaded within a compressed zip file; while most of them are true type fonts (TTF), the DK Clair De Lune font is an Open Type Font (OTF),and the Harrington Regular font offers multiple file types such as AFM, PFB, PFM, SIT, and TTF. I've listed the font file types available for each font featured in this piece.
Aka Potsley (TTF)
Alaskan Nights (TTF)
Alemonte Snow (TTF)
CF Snowball (TTF)
Christmas Card (TTF)
Christmas Cardinals (TTF)
Christmas on Crack (TTF)
DK Clair De Lune (OTF)
Easy Lombardic Two (TTF)
Happy New One (TTF)
Harrington Regular (AFM, PFB, PFM, SIT, TTF)
King Things Christmas (TTF)
Mountains of Christmas (TTF)
Night Sky (TTF)
One Starry Night (TTF)
Party by Tom (TTF)
Upper Lane Light (TTF)
XmasTerpiece Swashes (TTF)
These free or low cost fonts are the ones that I hand-picked and most impressed me with providing that special look and feel delivering the spirit of Christmas and the New Year holiday frivolity. There are so many more holiday fonts ranging from simple, fancy, artistic, and extravagant, including snowcapped fonts, and script invitation fonts. There is also another sub-section of picture and ding bat fonts which include many varieties of snowflakes, holiday doodle fonts, and themed fonts including Santa Claus, Trees, Gifts, and Hanukkah.
Fonts for a Fee
Several holiday font collections available for a licensing fee that are of note include the "Holiday Rob" ($29.95) set by Rob Leuschke containing 59 glyphs of Open Type variants found on MyFonts. Rob is a former lettering artist at Hallmark Cards and has been the head of his own design business since 1987; he has created over 250 custom typefaces.
And for a playful font, try out the Santa's Little Helpers ($19) or Yuletide Log ($59) by Comicraft, the font foundry originated by Richard Starkings and John Roshell in 1992, which is credited with pioneering digital lettering in the comic book industry.
Note: If you're new to installing additional fonts, here are the steps:Windows
- Download the font.
- If the font is contained within a compressed (zip) file it will need to be extracted.
- For a typical Windows PC OS copy the font file to the C:\Windows\Fonts folder OR double-click the file and select Install OR just drag it straight into the Fonts folder in Control Panel | Appearance & Personalization | Fonts.
- Open your application to find the new font.
- Download the font and extract.
- Double-click the file to open the Font Book application.
- Click the Install button.
Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all!