Episode 80: Font Management


 The Topic

Heather Joyce joins us to talk about managing all of the fonts we collect as digital scrapbookers.

Joining the Discussion:

Heather Joyce
Peppermint Granberg
Katie Nelson


From the Show:


Peppermint: Samsung 840 Series SSD
Katie: dafont
Steph: Red Stamp
Heather: Cameo Sketch Pens (sample of metallic pen below)



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46 Responses to Episode 80: Font Management

  1. StudioWendy says:

    I’m not a Font Book fan either. To me, it just has never made any sense! Maybe because I’ve always used a fancy font management software.

    Font Explorer by Linotype used to be a free program for Mac but a few years ago, they started charging for it. It was still a better price than Suitcase and Suitcase was buggy for a particular version of OSx a few years ago, so I went with Font Explorer. I’ve been happy enough with it, but I do think that Suitcase had a more user-friendly interface.

    Font Explorer does have plugins for auto-activating fonts in Adobe products, but I don’t use them, mainly because when I was doing extensive graphic design work, I’d have to load customer fonts temporarily and often had dozens of different versions of the same fonts, so I would want to manually choose what gets loaded as I would open customer files. Now that I’m not really working with tons of customer fonts, auto-activating probably wouldn’t be a problem.

    Font Explorer will also allow you to type in a sample and see the phrase in that font as you scroll through each. Or, double-click to see all the glyphs and dingbats as well as copy the character for pasting in your document.

    When I bought my first mac laptop, I made the mistake of removing some of those system fonts. Thankfully, I was in the initial setup phase of the computer, so having to completely wipe and reinstall wasn’t as painful as it could have been. So, yeah, don’t remove those mac system fonts!

  2. StudioWendy says:

    Just got an email from Jessica Sprague that you can get a sketch pen starter kit through her special link for $12.99 this weekend. Use this link and promo code JESSICA. http://www.silhouetteamerica.com/pen

  3. Tiffany says:

    Enjoyed the show, ladies. This is off topic, but I was just browsing the new gallery at Scrap Orchard and wanted to share that a lot of the users there who make 2-page layouts have been adding the hashtag #doublelayout in their descriptions. You can use that as a search term and instantly see a bunch of 2-page layouts in one place. As a scrapper who often scraps double pages, I think it is so fun to see a huge collection of 2-pagers in one spot. I don’t know of any other double page inspiration source out there, so I just wanted to share this with you guys if you didn’t know about it.

  4. Kami says:

    I am requesting a photo of Heather lugging her typerwriter in to the break room at her work so she can PL journal on her breaks. I need to see this. <3

  5. Jane says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. I had asked this question for the 75th episode and then when I realized that it was not the type of question you were answering my hopes were dashed. I was so excited when I saw the title of this weeks podcast my heart began to sing. I have not had a chance to listen to all of the episode yet but have gotten lots of good information already. I appreciate all the help you ladies provide. I listen to the show on my comute to work and feel like I am spending time with good friends. MWAH!

  6. Angie says:

    Hi Ladies I bought this extension in adobe exchange that plugs into photoshop called diskfonts. You can type in a sentence and it will show you what the fonts look like and if you want you can cut the saying out and just paste it into your layout like a word art png. It is something I think Steph would really like. The only thing I don’t like is it shows two of each font.


    It was $25 dollars. Love the show. Angie

    • Lahni says:

      There’s a website that will do something similar to this. You can just type in a phrase or word and it will show you what it looks like in all of the fonts that are active on your computer. Here’s the link: http://wordmark.it/

  7. Sarah H says:

    Peppermint, would love to know which font foundries are your favorite. I heard you mention a couple on the show but didn’t get a chance to listen again and write them down. Thanks for the great show.

  8. Karen says:

    Your podcasts are great. Thanks for the continued dose of insightful digi discussions.
    A particular comment in this episode peaked my interest when some one (I don’t remember who) mentioned an aggregator for cloud services (dropbox, google drive, etc). It was Julicloud or something. It wasn’t shared as a pick because the host/guest had something else chosen. I didn’t see anything in the show notes. Can you share it some how, please.

  9. Lahni says:

    I know I just listened to an episode where you discussed online backup…I’ve been listening to episodes completely out of order though so I’m having a hard time finding it. A girl at my store is looking for information about online backup and I was hoping I could direct her to the correct episode. Can someone help me find it?? I tried the search bar with no luck.

  10. Amy in TX says:

    Not a comment about this particular episode, but I want to thank you for introducing me to such high-quality designers on The Digi Show and in The Digi Files. I received some fantastic customer service from Wendyzine this past week, who tweaked an action for me and made my workflow so much more efficient. It makes me so happy to be able to do business with people who are so awesome (and that includes you too, Steph, Katie and Peppermint)!

  11. Deirdre says:

    I know you didn’t intend for it to turn into a techie-back-up discussion but I’m so glad it did! I’m always tweaking my back-up system and always have questions about the best EHD and how people manage theirs (I still want a peek/blog post into how Katie keeps track of what documents & digi supplies have or haven’t been backed up!).

    Every time you discuss this, I get a better understanding—and it motivates me to back up and fine tune my system. My husband thinks I’m obsessed with buying EHDs…but I’m buying one more today (4TB) for Crashplan to save locally. I know my eyes/ears would glaze over listening to a true-techie lecture on backup but the way you present it, as a conversation, has helped me so much. Thanks for the show!

  12. Amy says:

    I also appreciated the discussion about the EHDs. I’ve been using mine like a flash drive and thought it was because I couldn’t figure out the seagate software. Now I feel better :O) My seagate does disconnect itself throughout the day. It seems like it is sleeping or hibernating and I have no clue how to change it. Any thoughts on that? It has done this since the first day out of the box, so I think it must be a setting. I thought about returning it to Costco, but…. all my files are on there – you know?

    Also, I would like to second the comment from Amy in TX about you introducing us to the most amazing designers and business people. I too have received EXCELLENT customer service from Wendyzine and really everyone I’ve come into contact with via the daily digi and the digi show. Thank you!

    • Peppermint says:

      Hmm, I’ve never had that problem with my Seagate’s going to sleep. Mine do spin down into a power-saving mode after sitting idle but they still stay connected and listed in my file tree – there’s just a slight delay while they wake back up the next time I access them. There may be something in the software that allows you to turn that off, otherwise I think there are third-party apps that will write a small file to your EHD at an interval you set in order to keep it awake.

      Whenever I buy an EHD I format it completely (just in Windows) in order to remove all the random files that the manufacturer puts on there. Perhaps in doing that it bypasses any strange default settings?

      • Amy says:

        I was trying to be smart when I first got it and did the custom install so it wouldn’t load a ton of stuff I did really want. Maybe I messed something up. How do you format completely with Windows?

  13. Courtney M says:

    I came to make sure Katie knew about wordmark.it. It’s awesome for viewing what’s on your computer without having to go through the windows font viewer. Or if you are sassy: http://flippingtypical.com/# is another one that lets you see.

    Be super careful when you deactivate or remove Windows Fonts because there are a few programs that will error out and cause issues just like Macs.

  14. Sarah Haddox says:

    Hey ladies! I have a Silhouette SD and some of the sketch pens. The sketch pens do fit directly in blade holder. I also purchased a pen holder…but none of my pens fit in it, they are all too big. I know there is someone who sells her own version of a pen holder and it supposedly fits everything, including sharpies. I might have to get one of those copper shimmer pens and try it out. Also…they sell some fonts on the Silhoutte’s online store that allow you to use the sketch pens without worrying about the outline issue. I have used them for a few projects, and they are only a few dollars a piece.

    • Melissa says:

      Sarah – I think that you may be thinking of the Chomas creations one?


      I got both so I can put any old pen in the Cameo

      I opted for that pen holder as getting anything Silhouette is almost impossible here on short notice. Which is of course when your pen runs out!!

      Heather- I may have theoretically done the same thing with the blue glitter pen for our baby thankyous :)

    • Christine N says:

      I bought the Chomas pen holders (both sizes) last year and they work GREAT with my Silhouette SD! All kinds of pens and markers fit in them. Since I have a rather large collection of pens already, this way I can use any of my pens with my Silhouette instead of having to use the Silhouette sketch pens. I’ve used Sakura and Sharpie glitter pens and they look awesome! You can see some of my sketch pen journal cards I made using digi supplies here: http://www.listgirl.com/2012/04/project-life-assembly-line-process.html

      Also, if you have any thin-line fonts that you want to sketch without outlines, it may be worth investigating into Make The Cut software. Works with the Silhouette and the font functions are more advanced.

  15. Deirdre says:

    Coming back to now comment about the fonts:)

    I’m like Katie, no font management. I’m old school so I created a word doc that put my fonts into categories, then I print out one page with my very favorite hand-written, type-writer, script, best-for-titles on a cardstock and keep it with my PS shortcuts and a few other references sheets on a clipboard near my desk.

    It’s actually come most in handy when I have needed to reinstall on a new system—I love clearing out all the impulse downloads or specific fonts I used for themed birthdays, etc, and just installing my go-to-fonts. Pulling up that word doc lets me see which fonts are missing (because they are now all in Arial).

    I didn’t understand how Peppermint’s fonts on her personal computer could impact her online viewing…I must have misunderstood what she was saying, because not having a specific font shouldn’t stop you from being able to view it on a web page.

    If there is anyone just starting out and would like a copy of my Favorite Fonts via a Word document, feel free to email me at dokphoto {at} hotmail.com with Favorite Fonts in the subject line:) I’m not a font expert like Steph and have only bought a dozen or so over the years—and most of my favs were free (Katie, dafont is my fav too!), but it could be a good starting point.

  16. Teri Merkins says:

    So my comment has nothing to do with fonts, but I think you girls are just the ones to explain this to me. I just got my first DSLR camera (go DH for the awesome bday present!) and I know you can shoot in RAW and in JPEG. So, I’ve been doing both. But here’s the thing….I’m not really post processing my photos. I take enough that I usually have a few that turn out very nice. So, I don’t know why I’m keeping both copies. Now, I’ll keep shooting both because if there is a shot that I would like to post process with more flexibility, then I have the option, but I’m just not sure about keeping them.

    PS: I don’t keep my layered files for my LOs for more than a few weeks either.

  17. Donna E. says:

    I use NexusFont for windows. It’s free or you can make a donation. You can make sets and it lets you type in a sentence to see what it looks like in different fonts. You can install it on a removable drive or flash drive to use on any computer. I keep a folder of all my downloaded fonts on an external drive with the program. While Nexusfont is running, all fonts in are available for programs. The only problem I have is remembering to open it before Photoshop. If I forget, then I have to close Photoshop, open Nexusfont, minimize it and then reopen Photoshop so I can see all the fonts. I work on a laptop, but if I were using a desktop I would probably just leave Nexasfont running all the time so I wouldn’t have that problem. I think it’s a great free program.

  18. Marie says:

    I have a question about Suitcase Fusion – for some reason font management programs have always been confusing for me (I am very computer literate, I swear!)

    I installed Suitcase but the only problem is that all my fonts are considered system fonts and so I can’t put them in sets or anything like that. Does anyone know how I change that? Should I move them out of the Windows fonts folder into a different folder (and only leave the required fonts in there?) – any help would be appreciated. I like the program so far and it is so easy to activate and deactivate fonts.

    • StudioWendy says:

      I’m on a Mac, but yes, I remove all my fonts from the system folder except the required ones. The rest of my fonts get stored in a separate fonts folder. Then, I load them into my font manager as I use them. Stuff I don’t really use, I don’t load into my font manager because I have literally thousands of fonts and it will get to a point that it slows things down. Once they are loaded into sets in my font manager, I turn them on and off from there as I need them. Just be really, really careful what you pull out of there. Suitcase might even have a built-in features to help you determine that. You might even want to back up your computer before you go pulling fonts out just in case!

      • Marie says:

        Thank you Wendy! I copied all my fonts to a different folder and I am able to catalog them now into sets (which is what I like). In the Windows font folder (I accessed through Control Panel) I was able to select all and press delete – it warned me about system fonts and would not delete them. This is in Windows 8 and I’d tell everyone to be very careful with this! But it was handy. I’m not used to Windows doing something so convenient.

        Now for the fun of moving my fonts into sets – it’s really fun to see what I have.

        And thanks Peppermint – this is the easiest manager I’ve used yet. I’m still on the trial but will be purchasing before the time is up.

  19. Laurie M. says:

    Ok, this has nothing to do with this episode, but I am totally freaking out. I have been listening to the old paperclipping digi show and IT’S GONE! A couple days ago I downloaded the MP3 for episode 21, listened to it on my phone and I thought I would download another one for the car trip I am about to take and THEY ARE GONE! They CAN’T be GONE! :( I’m totally despondent!

    • steph says:

      I emailed Izzy and they took down the Digi Show category, so now all of the shows are mixed in with the regular Paperclipping shows. We are working on getting all of the old shows added here, so they will all be in one place. :)

      In the mean time, I Googled the episode number with Paperclipping and it pulled it right up. So, it looked like this in my search bar: PDS021 Paperclipping

      Try that and you should be good!!

      • Laurie M. says:

        YES!!! As we speak…okay really as I type, I am listening to episode 22. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  20. Tina says:

    Hello ladies! It’s been a while since I’ve commented (the last time was when I asked Steph how she was liking her Mac.) Anyway, I’m back with another computer question. I’m sure you all have talked about this before but I don’t remember what kind of laptops you all have. I have had the same HP for almost 7 years with only a few crashes (luckily all was backed up) and I was not going to be satisfied until I had my hands on a Mac…well guess what? I’m about ready to throw it out the window! I have decided I really don’t have time to learn another language and I’m going to take it back and trade for a PC. Just curious what you all have.

    • steph says:

      I’m sorry the Mac didn’t work out for you (truly I am, it’s always frustrating to have computer issues). I’ve been using HP’s for a long time. The one I have right now, I’ve had for three years and had no issues at all. I always get a 17″ laptop with an upgraded sound card and as much memory as I can afford. I’m actually not with my laptop right now, so I can’t tell you what model it is. :(

      I will add that I am starting to not hate my Mac. ;)

  21. Barbara says:

    Perhaps this is too simple, but it’s a tool that I like to use especially with dingbat fonts: the character map in Windows. I have it pinned to my task bar. :-/ It will show you all the extra characters in a font and how to key them.

  22. kimberly hallock jones says:

    A couple of quick questions for anyone..
    I’m traveling this weekend and have never taken my dslr – do I need to worry about my memory cards or camera w/ the xray machines?

    I have the perfect size and color bag that I love…I would like to get an insert to put in the bag to cushion/hold my camera and lens. I thought Peppermint or Steph mentioned one a long time ago but I could be imagining things.

    • StudioWendy says:

      Excellent question… I did some google research. It should be safe, but it was mentioned that it’s probably safer to let it go through the scanner so it’s kept away from any hand-held magnet-scanners that they may use on you. A few people reported SD cards going bad, but most people said they never had any trouble with their digital cameras or SD cards.

      I’m think Steph’s insert came from Etsy and I remember her saying there was a waiting list for them. I found this link from Katie’s blog. http://shop.martilena.com/

    • steph says:

      I’ve never had problems with my camera or memory cards while traveling. The bag insert I got was already made and I ordered from her shop, instead of a custom one, that way I was able to get it fast.

  23. Lahni says:

    I’ve never had problems travelling with my camera.

  24. Katie (sakura-panda) says:

    I bought one of Heather’s custom fonts, but when I went to fill it out, I found out I don’t like my ampersand. I know that I don’t have to fill in *all* of the boxes, but I do use ampersand a lot and would be lost if I didn’t have it in my own font. I don’t know yet what I’m going to do but will probably try to refine my ugly one first. LOL

    In general, I don’t use any formal font management and the time it takes for PSE to load up my fonts is driving me crazy! I don’t use most of them, but I don’t want (or know how) to uninstall them because every now and then I’m glad to have them. However, every time I pick the “T” button on PSE (v10), I have to wait a very long time for the tool bar to come up. When I’m finally scrolling through the list, the drop box will refresh three or four times (blinking off and then blinking back on to my last used font.) It’s frustrating and prevents me from looking for new fonts because I’m afraid that more fonts will make it worse.

    I have some ideas now for what a font manager can do for me and what to look for in software. Suitcase Fusion sounds fantastic, but since I don’t use CS, I don’t know if I will get enough benefit from it to justify the cost. I’m checking out FontExplorer X Pro too, but it’s the same cost/benefit issue. When I looked up Font Xplorer, I got a ” not compatible with Windows Vista/7/8″, and the forums say it has been (temporarily) discontinued. (They also say it works fine for font *viewing*, but not font installing/uninstalling.)

    Anyway — another great discussion! Once again I have so much to consider about something that I didn’t even know was unsatisfying. I always thought that I didn’t have enough fonts to make a manager worthwhile, but listening to the discussion about grouping and activating/deactiving fonts makes me think that even *I* could get some benefit from one. Thanks!

  25. Kathy28 says:

    I too had Heather create a font out of my hand writing. I love that I can use my own “handwriting” on my digi papers. I always felt a little fake using someone else’s handwriting on my pages and now I feel like they are more “me.” (If you want to be me, you can buy my font The Kathy in a set in her store.)

    I don’t use a font manager but I do use AMP Font viewer when I’m struggling to pick a font for a page. It lets me pick out a font a lot easier than if I’m scrolling through PSE.

    Great job as always, ladies!

  26. AKrubygal says:

    Just listened to your podcast — great show! I purchased Suitcase Fusion 4 — thanks for the recommendation.

    Is there a way to let the program find all of my non-system fonts {on my computer or EHD} and install them in my library ??