Frutiger’s classic namesake design has earned its serifs. The new Frutiger Serif design is borne to a well-established family. With its roots in Frutiger’s 1957 Meridien design, this family with 20 faces is diverse and deep enough to handle even the most complex relationships with ease.
Frutiger Serif History
It’s not every day that one of the world’s most renowned sans serif type families welcomes new members into its fold – with serifs. The Frutiger Serif design is the new font family by Adrian Frutiger and Akira Kobayashi. It is a re-envisioning of the Meridien typeface, one of Adrian Frutiger’s first – and always his favorite – designs which he created in 1957.
Now, some 51 years later, Kobayashi, with support from Adrian Frutiger, has adapted and expanded Meridien to create the Frutiger Serif family. Given his special appreciation for the metal version of Meridien, Kobayashi began Frutiger Serif from some of the earliest, letterpress specimens. The spirit of Meridien is still present in Frutiger Serif, although there have been many significant changes. New weights, widths, and styles not only come closer to Frutiger’s original design, but they now also complement several of Frutiger’s sans serif faces.
The Frutiger Serif font family is available in five weights ranging from light to heavy, and all weights are available in both regular and condensed proportions. Each of these also has a corresponding italic, which brings the family count up to 20 members. The Frutiger Serif family includes each italic weight in condensed as well – an addition that neither the original Frutiger nor the Frutiger Next design has.
All fonts in the Frutiger Serif family support 48 Western, Central and Eastern European languages, including the Baltic and Turkish languages. OpenType® features include ligatures and small caps as well as a wealth of figures for most numerical needs.
Frutiger Serif Usage
With its many weights and styles, the Frutiger Serif family is diverse and deep enough to be used on its own. However, when used in combination with other fonts, the added versatility of Frutiger Serif is revealed. The design works particularly well with the original Frutiger, Frutiger Next and the Univers designs – to name a few.
Pairing these serif and sans serif families is perfect for creating complex hierarchies and clear information design. Designing complex typographic systems with many elements, such as headlines, captions, pull quotes, multilingual text, etc., is greatly facilitated by combining Frutiger Serif with one of Frutiger’s other sans serif families. The designer needs simply to mix and match different weights and styles for the various textual elements to create smart, clear and innovative layouts.