Options for @font-face implementation

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November 21, 2011
["\"\"Webfont embedding is so widely supported by modern browsers at this point that there's really no excuse not to incorporate them when appropriate in your designs. There are hundreds of free fonts available for embedding, as well as plenty of paid services that allow you to include commercial fonts in your designs.<\/p>\n\nA lot of designers, it seems, are intimidated by the idea of @font-face<\/code> embedding though. Even though it's been gaining popularity and support for the past couple of years, a lot of designers still stick to their usual collection of web safe fonts for the vast majority of their designs. On the rare occasion they do step out of their comfort zone and include a web font, they just go with a webfont subscription service rather than looking into DIY embedding or something like Google Web Fonts<\/a>.\n\nIn this article, I'll give you everything you need to know to start embedding your own fonts, and to start using Google Web Fonts. The code itself is simple, and I'll also break down exactly why we're using the code we're using. I'll even give you ten great examples of web font combinations that you can implement on your own designs in case you're not yet comfortable with typeface combos.\n\n

Legalities associated with font embedding<\/h1>\n\nIt's important to start out with a discussion of the legal issues that can be present when embedding fonts on your website. Not all fonts are licensed for that kind of usage, especially commercial fonts. Some require extended licenses, while others prevent the practice all together (or sell a service to handle the embedding for you).\n\nIt's important to check the EULA for whatever fonts you plan to use to make sure @font-face<\/code> embedding is permitted. If not, you'll either need to choose a different font, find out if there's a separate license you can purchase, or see if one of the web font services out there includes your font of choice.\n\n \n\n

Options for embedding<\/h1>\n\nEmbedding fonts with @font-face<\/code> isn't particularly complicated, but it is a multi-step process. There are a couple of different ways to do this, including some free and paid services as well as a completely DIY method.\n\n

DIY embedding<\/h2>\n\nFor the best results and the most comprehensive browser support, you'll want to use a tool like Font Squirrel's @font-face<\/code> Generator. This free tool lets you upload any font you have appropriate permissions for and converts it to the various supported font file types for different browsers.\n\n

Cameron Chapman

Cameron Chapman is a freelance writer and designer from New England. You can visit her site or follow her on Twitter.

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