How to Choose a Headstone Inscription Font

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Gold lettering engraved onto a headstone

When choosing a headstone, an important consideration that needs to be made early on is the inscription font.

This can have a big effect on the overall look of the memorial, so it is important to get it right. 

The main factor to think about when selecting a headstone font is the legibility; you need to ensure that your memorial will be easy to understand for years to come.

Fonts for headstones generally fall into four categories:

Serif

Gold inscription in Serif font engraved on a headstone

Serif fonts are formal fonts that feature small decorative strokes at the ends of each letter for an established appearance.

People typically find a serif font much easier to understand than other types of lettering, thereby making them a font that are often used for print and engraving purposes – in turn making serif fonts one of the best fonts for headstones.

San Serif

Gold inscription in San Serif font engraved on a gravestone

A san serif font is considered to be much more modern and contemporary in style than a more traditional serif font.

A san serif font does not include the decorative strokes that are seen on serif fonts, which means some may consider them a little less easily understood.

Nevertheless, san serif fonts are often used online and are still a popular choice compared to many other fonts.

Gothic

White inscription in Gothic font engraved on a headstone

Gothic fonts are also known as Blackletter or Old English fonts, and are known for their elaborate appearance.

They are made up of dramatic thin and thick strokes and often features decorative swirls on the serif, which makes them highly unique with a great deal of character.

Script

Gold inscription in script font engraved on a headstone

Script fonts are an elaborate alternative to serif fonts.

All script fonts are based on calligraphy and feature elegant, fluid strokes that mimic cursive handwriting.

Your Selection

Letters on wooden block cubes

It is important to note that certain fonts will be unsuitable for different types of stone. For example, granite is a popular choice for headstones as it is a highly durable material, but it is too coarse for thing, delicate fonts to be engraved into it. In comparison, slate headstones have a very unique composition that means it cannot be cut as deeply as other stone materials and is therefore more suited to thin, elegant fonts.

The style of memorial will also have an impact on the type of font selected. If you are choosing a classic Gothic-style memorial, then you will need a complimentary font such as Times New Roman or Old English. For a more modern style of memorial, a simple san serif font would look more attractive. Traditionally, a Gothic or Script font is used for a memorial, but this is entirely dependent on the style of headstone that you choose.  

Gold engraving on a black gravestone memorial
Gold engraved lettering on granite headstone

Here at Summers Memorials, we are on hand to help you through every step of the memorial selection process. The style of font that you select plays a key role in the overall appearance of a memorial, but finding the right one can be a challenge. There are plenty of options available, and our expert team of Family Advisors are on hand to offer advice and guidance.

Our memorial showroom is based in Bristol, Somerset, but we design and craft quality bespoke headstones and a wide range of other memorials that can be delivered nationwide as well as internationally. Get in touch with us to discuss your memorial requirements by calling 02920 672823, e-mailing info@summersmemorials.co.uk or by completing our online contact form.

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