Black and white graphic featuring contrasting type styles created for the Monotype Trends Report 2024

How nostalgia will drive typography in 2024

In the year ahead, we’ll be seeing more typefaces born out of looking back, according to Monotype’s 2024 Type Trends Report. We speak to two of the report’s contributors about how designers are reflecting present anxieties and pining for the past via typography

If sober, minimal typographic tastes have prevailed in recent years, in 2024, expect to see more type that is big, bold, and filled with unexpected detail and character (excuse the pun). “Overall, this year, it’s very expressive,” says Damien Collot, creative type director at Monotype, and part of the team that worked on this year’s trends report alongside type designer Jordan Bell and associate designer Ibz Gharib.

The team have identified ten trends for the coming year, and though each one is distinct, nostalgia is a throughline tying many of them together. Sometimes it is explicit: one trend that they’ve dubbed Whatever dials into a resurgence of 90s aesthetics as well as Barbie-fever (they have tried to limit how much Barbie plays into the report but it’s impossible to ignore entirely). Mostly, though, nostalgia seems to be a subliminal influence.

For instance, another trend that they’ve called Return of the Serif anticipates a revival of serif fonts, which Collot believes may be a response to ‘blanding’ – in other words, brands overwhelmingly using sans-serifs. “It’s nice to see that we’re going back to looking at the details of type and adding a bit of flavour to letters,” he says. But serifs are also often called upon to communicate a sense of heritage, which may be why we’ve seen them used by companies going through a transformation period – from luxury fashion house Burberry to branding agency Landor, which recently shed ‘& Fitch’ from its name.

Jell-O BrandOpus
Top: Ibz Gharib’s design for the Monotype Type Trends Report 2024, featuring lettering by Raissa Pardini; Above: Jell-O’s retro design by BrandOpus features in Monotype’s trend called Whatever