Google Font Combinations In Action

Creating great typeface combinations is essential to design, and with so many open-source fonts now on offer we’re spoilt for choice. Whilst pairing typefaces is not a science, rather an art, there are four things I consider when choosing font pairs for a project; personality, contrast, balance and readability.

Here is a small selection of my favourite Google Font combinations with real-world examples.

Montserrat and Merriweather

This is one of my favourite combinations, both Montserrat and Merriweather work well alone and in other pairings. Montserrat is a geometric sans-serif typeface popular with graphic designers for its versatility and elegance. Merriweather contrasts beautifully with Montserrat and is designed to be readable at all sizes, making it a great choice for body text.

Montserrat and Merriweather in action on the website

Real-world uses:
I’ve used both of these fonts on websites and in presentations. I’ve also used Montserrat in magazine print.

Montserrat pairs well with other Google Fonts, including: Open Sans, Source Sans Pro, Lora, Roboto, PT Serif and Lato.

Merriweather goes well with Roboto and Open Sans

Download Montserrat and Merriweather from Google Fonts.

Playfair Display and Poppins

Playfair Display works great on headlines and titles. It’s a transitional serif meaning it has a much sharper serif and more contrast between the thick and thin strokes of the letters. Playfair Display works really well in headlines and titles but can also be used in body text. Poppins is a geometric sans-serif typeface based around circles and curves. It’s modern and friendly appearance works well the classic appeal of Playfair Display.

Playfair Display and Poppins in action on the website

Real-world uses: 
I’ve used both fonts on websites and in print. I used Playfair Display as headers in magazine print and Poppins in logo design and business cards.

Playfair Display pairs well with Lato, Roboto, Open Sans, Muli, Heebo, Poppins and Montserrat.

Poppins pairs well with Teko, Open Sans, PT Serif, Roboto, PT Sans and Droid Serif.

Download Playfair Display and Poppins from Google Fonts.

Roboto and Lora

Roboto is a modern and crisp sans-serif font originally developed by Google for Android. It is readable and part of a comprehensive font family which has made it extremely popular in web design. Lora is elegant with touch of retro. It is easy to read at small sizes making it perfect for body type.

Robot and Lora in action for an e-brochure built in PowerPoint for a IT service management company.

Real-world uses:
I’ve used both fonts in web design and digital documents like eBrochure. Roboto is often used in apps.

Roboto pairs well with Open Sans, Lato, Playfair Display, Montserrat, Roboto Mono, Oswald and Merriweather.

Lora pairs well with sans serif fonts like Montserrat, Open Sans and Arimo.

Download Roboto and Lora from Google Fonts.

Karla and Playfair Display

Karla is a grotesque sans serif typeface family. I love the fact that it’s a little quirky and has lots of character. This is a slightly unusual combination as Playfair Display also has a lot of character, so I used it sparingly in subtitles. Karla and Playfair Display in action on the website Decision Boundaries.

Real-world uses:
I’ve used Karla in web design and Playfair Diplay in both web and print design.

Karla pairs well with Montserrat, Heebo, Inconsolata, Hurme and Merriweather.

Playfair Display pairs well with Lato, Roboto, Open Sans, Muli, Heebo, Poppins and Montserrat.

Download Karla and Playfair Display from Google Fonts.