What are fonts?
A font is, quite simply, a style of lettering used to display letters, numbers and punctuation of type. Any time you see words or numbers, there is a specific font being used. Every font has it's own particular characteristics.
- Serif - This font type is most commonly used for books and periodicals.
- Sans Serif - This font type is used most commonly for signs, headings and pretty much anywhere where being able to actually decipher the text is more important than readability.
- Script - This font type best reflects cursive styles and/or calligraphy. This type is a bit harder to read than serif or sans serif.
- Monospaced - Every letter, number, etcetera is the exact same width.
Every Microsoft Windows system has a clear path to the Fonts folder. This makes font installation very simple. These instructions assume you've already downloaded your chosen font, and unzipped the file if necessary.
- Double-click the My Computer shortcut on your desktop. This will bring up a new window which should display your hard drive, cd/dvd drive and other hardware like your printer and all that.
- Double-click your C: drive, or whichever drive you have Windows installed on. You should now see options such as 'Documents,' Program Files, and a folder specifically named WINDOWS.
- Now, double-click the WINDOWS folder. You should now see a whole bunch of folders.
- Find and double click your 'Fonts' folder. Give it a moment to load, as this window lists every font you currently have installed on your computer. For some people this may take a while, for others it may move quickly.
- Click 'File', then choose the option 'Install New Font.'
- Navigate to where your font files waiting for install are saved, and select each one, following the instructions in the dialogue box.
Congratulations! You now have more font options. Now you can play around with them in your emails, documents and graphics (if you use photo-editing software.)
There are hundreds of websites from which you can download fonts for your computer. Be safe when you download them, always virus scan the files after downloading and BEFORE installing them. This will save you some heartache and frustration.
Also, be aware that if you download fonts in zip files, you'll have to save those to a special folder or to your desktop before unzipping them. In the case of a file download that is not zipped/archived, you can download these straight to your 'Fonts' folder.
A final note on downloading fonts: While there are many sites that allow you to download fonts for free, be mindful that when you really do want the best fonts, buying them is a great way to support artists, brands, and styles that you love.