Découpe fonts

Typeface Review


Reviewed by Lynne Yun on January 20, 2020

I have to admit, I have a huge soft spot for typefaces that have paper cut-out vibes and Découpe is no exception. With its straights and selective curves, it curiously reminds me of Preissig Antikva, which is lovely in all its eccentricities but remains quite hard to use. Découpe, on the other hand, was designed for modern times. Its quirks are noticeable, but not to the point where it would discourage the user from envisioning where, and how, the typeface might be used. It undoubtedly has some grit in its personality, but remains amiable.

The Sudtipos website describes Découpe perfectly: “A little bit irreverent and effervescent from time to time, this gestural sans serif family reveals its contrasts and asymmetrical shapes when it breaks through display functions.” It also notes that the designer, María Carla Mazzitelli, was inspired by gestural graphic expressions, like paper cut-outs (découpes!) and spontaneous handwriting.

For the letter constructions, Découpe has lovely details that wind through both the uprights and the romans. Notably, the upright letter joins have a quasi-italic construction that translates well when compared to the italic forms. (See, for example, the upright lowercase n, a, and b.) These highly stylized joins really shine when it comes to the thicker weights, and create little sparks of highlight when they come together to form words.

All in all, Découpe is a typeface that makes a statement, yet doesn’t take itself too seriously. Bravo to María Carla Mazzitelli and Sudtipos!

Lynne Yun is a NYC-based type designer and educator who specializes in typography, hand lettering, and calligraphy. She is a board member of AIGA NY and was previously a full time type designer at Monotype and graphic designer at companies such as Apple Inc. She has served on the board of Society of Scribes and holds a BFA from the School of Visual Arts and a postgraduate certificate in typeface design from Type@Cooper. She is now working on a masters degree at ITP in New York University.

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