Finding the perfect font can be a challenge. You know the name of the prohibitively expensive font you wish you could use, but need to find a free alternative? Or you have a picture of a font as inspiration, but don’t know what the font is called?
A few free online tools make it easy to find that perfect free alternative.
Finding Similar Fonts by Name
Alternatype is an easy to use website. Just enter the name of the font and it will suggest one or two free alternatives.
To find a similar font by name, Identifont also offers a straightforward tool. Just enter the name of the font and it will present you with a list of possible alternatives. Each font page includes a display with upper and lower case characters, a few symbols, and links to where you can purchase the fonts.
Both tools are particularly useful if you know the name of a specific font you’d like to use. That said, the database is somewhat limited, and you simply may not find the font you’re looking for.
Finding Similar Fonts by Image
If you are not sure of the name of the font, or it’s not showing up in the Alternatype or Identifont databases, you could use an image to identify it instead. Using What Font Is, you can either upload a screenshot of the text or just use a link to an online image where the font appears.
You will then need to identify the individual letters in the word or phrase in your image. What Font Is can present you with all the results, or filter down to only free fonts, or only fonts that can be used commercially.
What Font Is has a better chance of identifying the font the larger the characters are. A few tests with smaller images yielded inaccurate results.
What tools do you use to find the perfect font for your designs? Let us know in the comments.