We live in a world driven by print marketing. In fact, print has all but replaced oral communication, especially when you consider on-screen print such as email. It’s rare that we pause to consider the effect of typography and good print on our modern lives.
Celebrating print is the main focus of the Beautiful Type blog.
The blog is laid out to have somewhat of a scrapbook look, with different elements layered on top of each other and textured to give a realistic feeling. This relates directly to the print medium. In addition, the site uses several attractive fonts, which is important considering its subject.
The blog website design is rather simple, with just a few tabs at the left to divide it into four man areas. In addition, there are Twitter, email, and RSS links above. Much of the blog is visual and shows pictures of different posters and other instances of interesting type without more than a few words of commentary.
Loving type is a nerdy pleasure that we share, so we are inclined to call this website a win. However, there are many other factors that make it so. First, there is a solid sense of brand. Second, the information is well organized so that people are inclined to come back. Last, it is easy and even fun to explore the website—it lacks the cluttered, disorganized feeling that so many blogs have. Granted, it was created by graphic designers, so it has a professional touch that is hard to find outside of the design world.
The use of negative space is also striking. We already mentioned the décor, and that is certainly a large part of the good branding sense and aesthetic quality of the website. However, much of the page is simply left untouched. While this could be viewed as wasted space, in this case it makes for a much more readable and approachable blog. No ads and no clutter ensure that it is easy to find exactly what you need.
A blog may not be a commercial entity (although in many cases they are). However, they can still be professionally designed to the best CSS standards. Beautiful Type is a beautiful example of a blog that has been given all the benefits of professional web design.
Creativity: 5 stars. The layered elements and the colors create a cool, calm feeling but don’t detract from the prints being showcased.
Ease of use: 5 stars. This website is small, but organized intuitively for easy access to all of its sections.
Functionality: 4 stars. There are a variety of social networking and other links. We particularly like the ‘Books’ tab that makes it easy for readers to find print books about this subject. However, the website is still rather sparse. Hopefully there’s more to come!
Content: 4 stars. The content is as minimalist as the rest of the website—but just as well-thought-out. However, a blog should have just a little more ‘voice’.
Appropriateness: 5 stars. We’ve mentioned the use of typeface already. Every element feels at home.
Overall: 4.6 out of 5 stars.