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Graphic design

#Book covers

#Font

15 Free Fonts for Any School Yearbook
Graphic design

#Book covers

#Font

15 Free Yearbook Fonts to Write the Sweetest Memories

July 17, 2020
4 MINUTES
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Danica Popovic

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There are no rules to choosing the perfect yearbook font—just make sure it matches the yearbook theme and represents your school spirit. These 15 unique typefaces can help you find a style you like.

School yearbooks are a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for all font enthusiasts. Yearbook pages often have an eclectic layout: photos, illustrations, large blocks of text paired with short, poignant messages.

This means there’s room for lots of different fonts and lots of fun! Check out these 15 awesome and free fonts to inspire your yearbook team.

Classy sans serif fonts

Sans serif fonts have clean lines and are usually more legible, which is why they’re often used in a professional context. However, their clean look is quite versatile and can make a great choice for any yearbook design.

Some of the most popular sans serif fonts are Arial, Roboto, Open Sans and Proxima Nova. Any of these will probably make a safe font choice, but here are some interesting alternatives to consider.

1. Optima

This beautiful font is very elegant and is sure to give your yearbook a sense of tradition and gravitas that teachers and parents will approve. On the other hand, it’s definitely not boring! It resembles the signature font used by the brand Pandora, which holds a similar connection between elegance, luxury and youthfulness.

optima yearbook font.png

2. Signika

This font is a great option for smaller point sizes, as its spaced out letters allow for high readability and clarity. The curved edges give this typeface a gentler look, which can be perfect for filling yearbook pages with sweet, school memories.

signika yearbook font.png

3. Bavro

Imagine this modern, futuristic typography on your yearbook cover! It’s sure to win the approval of the entire student body. The downside is that it’s free only in the all-caps version. So if you’re on a budget, you may need to find a complementary font for body copy.

bavro yearbook font.png

4. Arca Majora

Another all-caps font to give your yearbook cover a sense of drama. This one is a little less stylized, so it can still be a great choice for some yearbook pages with less text on them, for example, magazine-style pages with lots of pictures and a bold title.

arca majora yearbook font.jpg

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Traditional serifs

The evergreen serif is a font family you probably recognize by fonts like Garamond, Times or Baskerville. The classic typography is something we’re used to seeing in print—and certainly a style that your teachers and headmasters would approve of. This shouldn’t put you off as this font type has a huge number of exciting, modern variations.

Serifs can be beautiful decorative fonts without being overly romantic or frilly.

5. Forum

This free Google font is inspired by classic roman fonts which are often associated with higher education institutions (it’s very similar to the typeface Harvard uses). That’s why it would make a wonderful choice for college yearbooks as well as any high school yearbook wanting to foreshadow that next big step. It’s designed primarily as a headline font, however it’s legible and elegant and would also make the right choice for body text.

forum yearbook font.png

6. Butler

This beautiful font was inspired by the Dala Floda and Bodoni family of fonts. It’s a more modern take on very classic looking fonts, so it’s definitely the right font for your school if you’d like your yearbook design to radiate a sense of tradition and maturity, packaged in a sleek, modern graphic design.

butler yearbook font.png

7. Barbaro

Retro style is always a favorite with yearbook design, especially the 1950s and 1960s aesthetic (letterman jackets, cheerleader uniforms, groovy fonts). There are tons of retro font styles you can pick to match your overall design. This is a great option as it’s got a positive 1960s flair without being cartoonish.

barbaro yearbook font.jpg

8. Firefly

Although I’m fairly sure most schools have now switched to whiteboards and markers, chalk fonts are a definitive favorite for any yearbook. There are plenty of bulkier options, but this delicate custom font has a unique retro vibe. It will also compliment any illustrations or doodles you want to include in the final design.

firefly yearbook font.jpg

Melancholic Script Fonts

Script fonts are supposed to mimic human handwriting, so they are definitely going to give any yearbook a more personal look. They’re particularly good for yearbook quotes, as they can make it seem like these were handwritten!

9. Serendipity

Poor readability is an issue with many cursive fonts, but this is not one of them. This elegant script would make a wonderful choice for sub-heads (e.g., when the heading is a bulky bold font) and even body copy.

serendipity yearbook font (4).jpg

10. Youth Touch

The name gives it away! This script font is vibrant and modern. It can be used for headings as well as body text. Be careful, however, as it may not be legible in very small font sizes.

youth touch yearbook font.jpg

11. Hickory Jack

If you want something striking, but still legible, then this cool font is something to consider. It’s unique and, again, resembles human handwriting. It can be a terrific option for sub-heads and used in smaller sizes.

hickory jack yearbook font.png

Go big or bold

Bulky fonts like slab serifs may be an acquired taste, but they certainly have their place in the world of yearbook design. They can make a great font choice for futuristic cover designs or statement headings. They probably won’t make the most timeless of yearbooks, but they will certainly make for memorable, exciting testaments to your school life.

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12. Higher

This free font hasn’t got the best readability so it’s best to use it sparingly. However, it’s very cool, and would probably make a brilliant twist on your school monogram. I definitely recommend you check out the numbers of this font. They are especially quirky and fun so you may want to consider it to indicate your graduation year!

higher yearbook font.png

13. Pelmeshka

This font is inspired by Bodoni, a lovely font that resembles handwriting. Pelmeshka is chunkier and more dramatic and makes a terrific option for headings and subheads. Its playful look makes it a great choice for elementary school yearbooks.

pelmeshka yearbook font (2).jpg

14. Promesh

If you’re planning to dedicate a yearbook page to all the jocks, then you can hardly go wrong with this “athletic” font style. However, this one is not just great as a gimmick. It’s a crisp, legible all-caps font that will make any yearbook look well-designed.

promesh yearbook font.jpg

15. Lev Black Distressed

This is definitely not a font you’d use in body copy, but it can make the perfect heading font to represent an urban and perhaps a little rebellious generation of high school students. It’s not a font to match every yearbook theme, but if you have something to say and aren’t afraid to speak out, we encourage you to pick a font style to match that sentiment!

lev black distressed yearbook font (1).jpg

Bonus tip: mix and match!

Creating your school yearbook should be a fun and creative experience. There are tons of great free fonts you can find on Google or design websites like Canva.

Remember: don’t be afraid to experiment. You can always use complementary fonts (e.g. different typefaces from the same font family), but it’s also great to try other things. Pair serifs with sans serifs; bold slab serifs with elegant, script fonts. Or use the same font family and mix letters of different thicknesses.

The best yearbooks are as colorful, eclectic and diverse as the students so try to use different fonts to reflect that!

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Danica Popovic

July 17, 2020

Having lived and studied in London and Berlin, I'm back in native Serbia, working remotely and writing short stories and plays in my free time. With previous experience in the nonprofit sector, I'm currently writing about the universal language of good graphic design. I make mix CDs and my playlists are almost exclusively 1960s.