07 april 2014 — presentations
Wo-Wo Polski Tour 2014

This spring we’re gonna travel towards the Polish borders for some lectures and workshops during our “Wo-Wo Polski?” roadtrip. But we will not enter Poland. We repeat: we will not enter Poland. We are only gonna wave to the Poles. Miło cię spotkać! Four cities in three countries in one month, let’s hope our van won’t let us down.


22–25 April: Vilnius (Lithuania)

What’s up?

In this 4-day long typeworkshop at the Vilnius Art Academy you’re gonna create a typographic toolbox for social media. Short letterings which represent your different moods, which can be used to communicate your status in social media. You can use these letterings for your most favorite social media application. Letterings can be animated as well, just keep them pure typographic, black & white, without illustrative elements. Digital outline drawing of typefaces will be introduced, as well as some foundations of type design and lettering.


Thursday 24 April: lecture by Underware at the Vilnius Academy of Arts, Maironio str. 3, Vilnius. Be in room 312 not any later than 18:00 o’clock, as Sami will then start to unravel the invisible research behind designing typefaces.


23 April: Plzeň (Czech Republic)
Lecture at the University of West Bohemia, as part of the DE.SIGN 2014 project. Faculty or Art & Design, 16:00 o’clock, sharp.


The iceberg called type design

Type design is maybe the most subconsciously observed visual human creation. Most people will read a text without notifying the typeface itself, and that’s totally legitimate. Only a happy few will notice the typeface which is used. You can call them graphic designers with a job-related disability if they can tell the name of the font, including its designer. But even those happy few will mostly not be aware of the kind of research which is involved in making those typefaces. The pan-European type design studio Underware will reveal the research behind their typefaces, and demonstrate that type design is like an iceberg: 90% is hidden under the water. A design lecture told from the submarine. Be aware: it can be dark below sea level…

24-25 April: Prague (Czech Republic)
24 April: Thursday at 19:00, lecture “The iceberg called type design” (see above) at Instituto Cervantes, Na Rybníčku 536/6, Prague. Open for public, so drop by if you’re around.


25 April: Type workshop at Prague College, School of Art & Design. One day to explore the foundations of type design, and offer yourself a kickstart in a new territory.


21 May: Leipzig (Germany)
The folks from Leipziger Typotage invited us to talk about type. In the end, type is about language. In the beginning too. And somewhere in between that language needs to get a certain shape. Therefore we present a message from the language engine room. “Occidental is dead. Now what?” Ten speakers in one day, so Akiem and Bas will do their best to get to the point quickly.


Do zobaczenia później!


15 february 2014 — presentations
Typotherapy session

Show me your typeface, and I’ll tell you who you are. Don’t like who you are? I can help you with your change. This is in short the essence of a typotherapy session. To explain what typotherapy is, we need to go 2 steps back.


06 december 2013 — fonts in use
Bello goes freestyle 3

Apparently something inside Bello Script makes people go ‘woooeh, yes, I will make that myself’. After episode 1 & 2, here is another Bello-goes-freestyle episode. This time a bikeshop in Toronto went DIY all the way.

Some more pictures at fonts in use.

31 october 2013 — fonts in use
Oh oh. Rivalry in the Finnish freezer.

Game is on in the Finnish supermarkets.
Pingviini vs Eldorado = Nestlé vs Tuko Logistics = Sauna vs Sauna.

Of course it’s cool to pick a typeface called Sauna for the freezing compartment…

Is this the “if you can’t beat them, join them” kind of font choice?

25 october 2013 — walhalla
Greetings from Nepal

Happy brothas around the globe.

07 october 2013 — read more
Letter to Jan van Krimpen


Amsterdam, 07 October 2013


Dear Jan,


I should have probably saluted you with ‘Dear Mr. Van Krimpen’, but since you are dead anyway it doesn’t really matter. There is one question I would like to ask you, although I realize I’m 55 years too late.


First I’ve got some news for you. This year’s ATypI conference will take place in the Krasnapolsky hotel, at the Dam Square in Amsterdam. You would have loved to be there, enjoying heated discussions with many of our colleagues. Not sure whether you remember ATypI, because it was founded one year before your death: a Freemasonry for typophiles. It would probably (secretly?) have filled you with pride that the National Monument is in front of the conference venue. All our colleagues and friends who come to the ATypI conference this year cannot avoid this monument which carries your lettering. So despite your death, you are still guarding all of us coming week. That’s a nice feeling.


National Monument. Krasnapolsky hotel on the right side. © Stadsarchief Amsterdam



02 october 2013 — presentations
Underware goes Rio


For the first time in history, Underware will conduct a type workshop in Brazil. They will hit Rio de Janeiro on 22 & 23 Oct for a short, but über-intensive workshop.


During this 2-day workshop you can learn the basic principles of type design. Although you won’t even realize that, because you will be too busy with making your own typeface. By the end of the day you might realize that you didn’t check Facebook, because there are more interesting things in life. Typefaces for example. Or being part of this stream of typographic energy.


If you ever wondered how type works and how it is made, this is the moment you can figure that out.


The workshop takes 2 full days, and will end with a lecture in the evening on Dutch type design combined with a presentation of the workshop results.


Date: 22 & 23 Oct 2013, 09:30 – 18:00 o’clock

Costs: R$580 or 3xR$220

Location: Espaço Cultural Olho da Rua, Rua Bambina, 06 – Botafogo


Limited seating, so don’t wait too long with subscribing if you are interested in this workshop: subscribe or email typeworkshop.x26@gmail.com.



Let’s show the Brazilians why the Dutch are too much. Summarizing 5 centuries in less than two hours? Yeah, right. Because type from the Low Countries is as good as Dutch football: 90 minutes of gallery play.


Lecture by Underware on Dutch Type Design.


23 Oct 2013 at 8 pm.

Free entrance, registration necessary.



Templo Coworking

Rua Duque Estrada, 41

Gávea, Rio de Janeiro

01 october 2013 — walhalla
That little thing

Can’t remember anymore how often we had to explain the user interface of InDesign to our customers. It’s our top 1-support question. Yes, all the magic of OpenType fonts is very well hidden in a sub-submenu of a palette. Every time we explained the menu, their reaction is the same: ‘WTF, that little thing?’. No wonder that the majority of the font users is not aware of the possibilities of OpenType fonts. Even worse, they often think the small caps are missing because they can’t find them. After more than a decade of OpenType magic, it’s about time that Adobe (but also other developers) improves the OpenType user interface within their applications. Maybe it helps if every Adobe employee is obliged to wear the “triangle plus stripes”-t-shirt until that is fixed?




OpenType features need to be as easy to understand and apply as the Bold & Italic buttons in good old MS Word. Here is one simple suggestion for a possible UI-improvement. But we need more suggestions, so start sketching. Please make and share your OpenType interfaces, and let’s strive for a better UI.


[slides from our “It’s so technical, so let’s tell it with a comic story”-presentation at Kerning Conference earlier this year in Italy. ]

25 september 2013 — walhalla
Typotentie A

Today in “Stuff you can’t find on the internet”: printed collectors items. How cool is that, receiving an email 16 years later? Recently we received an email from Minotaurus – specialized and antiquarian bookseller in Amsterdam – that they discovered a handprinted magazine from Bas in their store: Typotentie A. Honestly, we forgot about this magazine already. So we should thank our local bookshop for preserving some labour intensive specimens. Chapeau for their unscrupulous administration.


Typotentie is hand printed typographic magazine, combining various printing techniques, hand bound, published in a tiny edition. It was our early mini-adventure in self-publishing while studying. Originally intended as a non-regular typographic publication, Typotentie got already stuck at the second issue. The cover of issue B has already been printed, the interior paper is cut and prepared, but a lack of space for setting up the printing press after moving caused a sad ending of this magazine. A sorrowful destiny in true DIY-spirit.


If anybody is interested in a Korrex proofing press, let us know. The press is stored, unused, waiting for new adventures. And if you are ever in Amsterdam, visit Minotaurus bookshop at the Sint Antoniesbreestraat 3d in the city centre of Amsterdam. They still have a copy of Typotentie A in stock, as well as many other books on typography, bookbinding, book history and poetry, as well as many hand printed, bibliophile books. It can’t be stressed often enough how luxurious it is that such a bookshop exists. Take that, internet.

24 june 2013 — out now
New font: Sauna Mono

Sauna Mono, one size for all


As from today the type family Sauna has a monospaced companion: Sauna Mono. Unlike most monospaced typefaces, Sauna Mono has a lot of flair. Although every character has the same width, Sauna Mono doesn’t feel forced into a box. Instead every character remains as warm and characteristic as the other Sauna typefaces. Some swashy characters give a lot of charm to this typeface, especially the italic lowercase characters. Their strokes fly all over.


Monospaced fonts are nowadays mostly used by programmers for coding, or to present complex information in a well-organized table. And mostly you need a timid, clear typeface for that. As a consequence most monospaced fonts are… well, timid and clear. Sauna Mono is everything except timid and clear. It’s expressive jazz on a dubstep beat. It’s Tarzan on a Swiss grid. Who said monospaced fonts are boring?



If you look for a reason to fall in love with Sauna Mono, we’ll give you a helping hand: just look at the long, swashy strokes of some lowercase letters. Those give a lot of charm to the family. Who wouldn’t like to fall in love with an f like this?



With this new addition of 4 monospaced styles, the Sauna family grows to a total amount of 15 styles. These additional fixed-width fonts make the Sauna family utilizable for more complex tasks. Typesetting tables of an annual report made within a knotty corporate identity for example.


Introduction offer

Sauna Mono is now available as a desktop font as well as a webfont in our shop. You can save €25,– by ordering all 4 styles at once. Even better: because Sauna finally has a new buddy, you can give one Sauna Mono for free to one of your friends if you buy the complete Sauna Mono package yourself. This introduction offer runs until 12 July.


Wanna know more? Find further information about the type family on our website: underware.nl/fonts/saunamono. Enjoy.