Importing fonts

Locations

Typeface lets you import fonts from any folder on your Mac, external disk or network share. These folders are added as linked locations to the sidebar. All fonts inside the folders (and subfolders) will be imported into the app.

Typeface doesn’t move or copy your font files when importing, it just links to their location. This means that you can organize your font files and directory structure however you want. For example you can keep your license files or other assets right next to the font files. Or you can sync your fonts with Dropbox such that your fonts are shared between Macs.

Importing a new location

To import a new location you can use one of the following methods:

You only need to do this once. Typeface scans your imported locations for new fonts, so you don’t have import each new font manually.

You can directly drag and drop folders or files onto one of the tags in the sidebar. Typeface will import the dragged fonts if they’re not imported already and will attach the targeted tag.

Refreshing & new fonts

Your imported locations are automatically scanned on launch for new, moved and removed font files. The font files are tracked such that if you move them around Typeface will keep their tags attached. When you move a font file outside of an imported folder the font will be removed from Typeface.

New fonts will be imported after scanning. You don’t have to manually import them, just make sure the font files are located in one of your imported folders in Finder. Typeface will notice the new fonts, import them and adds them to the Last Import tag in the sidebar. Scans happen automatically in the background on launch. You can manually trigger a scan at any time by right clicking on a location in the sidebar and choosing Refresh Location.

Advanced location options

There are a couple of options you can change when you import a directory:

These settings are location specific. For some locations you want to scan all subdirectories and for some you don’t. Change these options before import by clicking on the Options button in the bottom left corner. If you drag and drop a folder the default options will be used: subfolders will included, hidden files and packages will be skipped.

Importing font options

Importing individual fonts

Typeface 3 allows you to import individual font files as well. Drag and drop files onto the app to import them, or right click on a supported font file in Finder and choose Open With > Typeface. These manually imported fonts will be added to the Manual location in the sidebar. The Manual location will be hidden if there are no individually imported fonts.

Note that macOS limits the number of individual font files you can import during an app session. Typeface will warn you when you approach the limit, which is around 2000 font files. If you go over the limit Typeface is not allowed to load any font files, which may cause missing previews or other issues. Restarting your Mac will reset the limit.

There are no such restrictions when you import folders, those can contain any number of font files.

Removing fonts

Every once in a while you might want to cleanup old fonts you don’t use anymore. Right click on a font in Typeface and choose ‘Move Font to Trash’ from the context menu to move the font file to the macOS trash. The font will not be visible in Typeface anymore and its tags will be detached.

You can also manually move font files to the macOS trash in Finder. Typeface will notice that the files are gone and will remove them from your library on refresh. Previously attached tags are remembered for you, so if you accidentally removed the fonts and want to import them again later their tags are automatically restored.

Just want to remove the font from Typeface and don’t want to trash the file? Hold down the Option key to select the ‘Remove Font from Typeface’ menu item in the context menu. Typeface will forget the font and it won’t be visible. Do keep in mind that the font will be reimported if the font file is located in one of your imported locations. Its tags will be restored if the font is imported again.

Removing locations

You can remove a location by right clicking on it in the sidebar and choosing Remove Location. All its imported fonts will be removed from Typeface as well (but your font files will remain on your disk of course!). Any tags attached to the fonts will not be remembered. Make sure to manually create a backup of your tags if you want to import those fonts later and restore their tags.

Recommended workflow

The recommended way to manage your font files with Typeface is to create a custom folder on your Mac where you store your fonts. You can place this folder anywhere you want, for example create a ‘My Fonts’ folder in your macOS User folder and put your fonts in there. Then import that folder into Typeface by dragging the folder to the Typeface window.

Whenever you’ve downloaded new fonts move them to that custom font folder in Finder. Restart Typeface or manually refresh the imported location in the sidebar (Right click > Refresh Location) and the new fonts will automatically show up. The new fonts are visible in the Last Import tag in the sidebar.

This approach is very flexible and you’re free to organize your font files however you like. You can create multiple font locations, for example one for free fonts and one for purchased fonts. Or create separate locations for different projects. You can create subfolders to keep your fonts neatly organized. And Typeface keeps your library up to date automatically.

Transitioning from Font Book

Typeface will automatically import all fonts (both activated and deactivated) from Font Book. You don’t have to move or export your fonts. The first time you launch Typeface it will also import your Font Book collections, so you can continue organizing your library where you left off.

Fonts previously installed using Font Book are located in the macOS user font directory: /Users/<username>/Library/Fonts. You can leave your fonts in there, but it’s a bit hard to find. By default the Library folder is hidden on your Mac, so you can’t easily access your font files.

If you’d rather want to move your fonts to a more accessible location where you can decide how to organize them (see the ‘Recommended workflow’ section) follow these steps:

  1. Open Finder
  2. Create a custom folder for your fonts, for example: /Users/<username>/Fonts
  3. Choose Go > Go to Folder, or press Command + Shift + G
  4. Enter the following path (copy and paste) and press Go: ~/Library/Fonts
  5. Move the font files inside the Library folder to your custom font folder created in step 2
  6. Drag and drop your /Users/<username>/Fonts folder to Typeface

Special font sources

System fonts

Your Mac comes with many preinstalled system fonts. Typeface automatically imports all these fonts to get you started. Any font that is globally available to other apps on your Mac will be imported. That includes fonts you’ve activated or installed using Font Book or any other font manager.

If you’d rather want to see your fonts only and don’t want to import system fonts you can disable the Font Book source in Preferences > Library. When disabled Typeface only shows fonts from your imported locations (and your manually imported font files).

Google Fonts

Typeface can import the full Google Fonts catalog with 2000+ fonts into your library. When imported Typeface keeps the fonts up-to-date so you’ll automatically get the latest fonts when they’re added to the catalog.

To import the Google Fonts catalog go to Preferences > Library and enable the Google Fonts checkbox. This will add a Google location to your sidebar.

For more info about Google Fonts and the font licenses go to fonts.google.com.

Adobe Fonts

Import your Adobe Fonts by opening Preference, choosing Library and enabling the Adobe Fonts checkbox. This will add an Adobe location to your sidebar. Note that only Adobe Fonts that are synced (downloaded) to your Mac will be imported. Fonts that are not synced by the Adobe Fonts client are not visible in Typeface.

Preference settings

The following options are global and apply to all imported locations. You can find them in the Library section of the Preferences.

Import duplicates

If the Import Duplicates option is unchecked, Typeface will skip importing fonts if another font with the same PostScript name is already imported. This makes sure you always have only one copy of a font imported. For example if you have Helvetica-Light imported from macOS and have a separate Helvetica-Light font somewhere else, Typeface will not import it.

When this option is enabled Typeface doesn’t skip these fonts and will import all duplicates. Remember that only one of the duplicates can be activated at the same time (otherwise you’ll get font conflicts).

Import hidden fonts

Some fonts files contain hidden fonts, starting with a leading ‘.’ (dot), e.g. “.Al Bayan PUA Plain”. These fonts are normally not visible in other apps, so you probably don’t want to see them in Typeface either. But if you want you can import them by checking the ‘Import Hidden Fonts’ option in the Preferences panel.

Classify Fonts on import

Typeface automatically tries to classify fonts on import and applies one of the #style tags. The following tags will be applied:

Typeface checks the internal font meta data to see which style tag to apply. Not every font contains this information, so not every font will be classified. You can manually attach tags to the fonts that haven’t been classified.

The style tags are automatically create on launch. If you don’t use the #style tags and want to remove them from the app, uncheck the Classify Fonts on Import option first in Preferences > Library.



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