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Lichtenberger Backstube

Contributed by Florian Hardwig on Nov 6th, 2012.
    Photo: Florian Hardwig. License: All Rights Reserved.

    Daily horror: A pointless jumble of insipid typefaces, words arranged on angles and arcs, letterforms stretched, squeezed and outlined. This is one of countless examples of store front signage that has been created without any sense of design. Not even Motter Femina – a quite nice and not so often seen typeface – can help.


    • Motter Femina
    • Brush Script
    • Freestyle Script
    • Cooper Black
    • Britannic



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    4 Comments on “Lichtenberger Backstube”

    1. Ouch says:
      Nov 6th, 2012  3:46 pm

      This should be called “fonts in abuse.”

      Though, the rainbow of Cooper Black really holds it all together. That is a handy graphic trick to call up on times of trouble.

    2. Nov 6th, 2012  3:49 pm

      Not only is Motter Femina seldom seen, it also now seems to be unlicensable. Once distributed in the ITC lbrary, it’s no longer available at any of ITC’s retailers or sublicensors like Elsner+Flake. Perhaps Othmar Motter’s grandchildren plan to sell it at Motter Fonts. They have managed his assets since his death in 2010.

    3. Nov 7th, 2012  11:47 am

      Over on Twitter, Emma raised a valid argument: This is a privately-run shop that can’t afford to spend big money on design. Hence, it is unfair to call them out, or compare them to chains and big players.

      I feel compelled to clarify my point. It was not my intent to pick on small shop owners. What I do bemoan that many signmakers show no design skills or motivation whatsoever. (I don’t believe the shop owner created these signs himself, he very likely paid someone to make them.) This bakery is not an exception at all. Like I wrote, it’s just one of countless examples, and it’s far from being the worst. Maybe I should have posted a whole bunch.

      I don’t long for a slick urban landscape that is professionally designed through and through. That would be boring and horrible, too. I just wish for a broader awareness for the visual aspects of our culture. A decent storefront doesn’t have to be expensive, signs are cheaper than ever. Even a self-made sign can be adequate, and there are charming examples of vernacular DIY signs that are both honest and successful. With specialists disappearing and means of graphic production being made available to anyone, it is a question of awareness and (self)education, in the end. I like to believe that it pays off to have an attractive store front.

      Although a majority of the posts here feature professional and commercial works – including some high-profile cases – I find that Fonts In Use should be a place to show and discuss any font use, including the mundane and less successful ones.

    4. Scott S. says:
      Nov 8th, 2012  10:33 pm

      It is also my belief that it pays off to have an attractive store front. But, perhaps distinctive sometimes pays more? The case in point: sometimes an unattractive storefront can attract global attention! And if they can do that, I’m sure it serves them equally well with the locals. I don’t know if I am more impressed that the shop owners actually found them and  distorted them like a kneaded doughball, or with you, who took the time an effort to research and document them. Insanity and genius doth dwell on opposite sides of a razor thin line. 

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