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fun extras

The Fun Extras - Set Eight


For journaling, what font size do you use?

I remember back when I first started digital scrapbooking. I wondered what text size to use for my journaling. Of course, we want it to be readable.

As I shared layouts with a Yahoo Group, the feedback was that they could not read my journaling, so I began making it bigger so they could read it.

However, I learned that when I printed these layouts that were legible in galleries and e-mail, I realized that the print was too big! I have watched many people fall into the same trap over the years. 

Remember, it is not important that it be easily read in galleries and e-mails and do not let comments change that. It is only important that the text size be just right when printed.

If need be, copy the text into the layout description in the area where you give credits to Designers for those that want to read your journaling.

So, what is the right size when printed? As I recall from learning to type on a manual typewriter (oh, yes!), the standard font size is 12 point. This is what I generally use for my text. 

However, do remember that not all fonts produce the same size. New Times Roman and Arial in 12 point is very readable, but in other fonts, it may not be. It takes time to develop an eye for what is readable.

Do not use fancy, cool, interesting, and awesome fonts for journaling as they can make it hard to read. Save the fancy fonts for title work.

Of course, remember the design principle of contrast to make your fonts readable. A dark font on a dark background just does not work. Changing it to a lot font on a dark background make it easier to read, or vice versa. If a good contrast cannot be found with the background, put the journaling on a mat or piece of vellum that does work well.

Feel free to add your tips for newbies in the comments as we are all here to help each other be better scrappers. Written Oct 26, 2008


Here are your answers!


Great Tip Hummie. I think we all fall into that trap. I usually put my journaling in the memo area, it has to be so huge to read it on-line.I think that the simple hints such as this have helped me the most. Thank you and keep up the great work!! PoohBear

I agree! My early layouts are so inconsistent! Nowadays I sometimes I print 8x8. So if I design 12x12 and think I might print 8x8 I use 14point just to be safe. Esther

It is always amazing to me how you end up blogging about my current concern...I have a page with a fair amount of journaling. The point size is 9 but I can read it on screen in PSE quite easily. Should I be worried to print it? Would it a fair test to use the same font in a Word document and print it out? I haven't adjusted the text box size after I typed. Donna

Great article, Hummie. It might have been beneficial to link up your article on how fonts are effected with resizing. :) Scraps of Candy

I appreciate this reminder. TY :) Latte’ Dah

thank you so much for sharing this! i have always struggled with this very thing and you are always so very helpful! Shannon

Good information! If I have resized a text box, I click in the journaling, with the text tool selected, so I can look up at the bar and see what size font I now have. I also change the viewing percentage in PSE, so that it approximates the actual size I will be printing at. I actually made a 'ruler' just above the screen on my monitor, so I can tell if I'm viewing it at the size it will be when it is printed… Anita B

I remember this lesson from a while ago, but I don't see my comment. I like to use fonts that look like my printing or writing and they usually need a range of 18 to 24 points. I enlarge my page on the screen to be sure my journaling isn't too big or small. Diane

Being visually impaired, this is tough for me. I can't read a smaller font. So, what I do is make my layout, add my text, then zoom to print size. If it looks too big there, I make the font smaller. Dawn

I don't write a whole lot on my layouts. I know, I should and I'm getting a bit better. I use between 18-24 points. Tammy

Thanks for all the tips and reminders. I can get carried away with my journaling so I quite often use a small sized font to be able to fit everything in. I treat each lo as it comes so no hard and fast rule Barbara

Oh my gosh! I so needed this when i first started digi scrapping. I've asked before but never got an answer about font sizes. Anyway, this was great - except I will now need to check all my pages to make sure my fonts are not too big! Maggie


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