Who and what is Bleifrei Type?

So here it is, Bleifrei's first blog post, created by Aaron, Florian, Matthieu and Rahel, four young graphic designers located in and around Bern, Switzerland. We share a great interest in type design and with Bleifrei we have made a dream come true.

It all began about one year ago. The four of us decided to start a type foundry after studying Visual Communication together at HKB. During our studies, we discovered our common passion for typography and type design, and so we established "Typofritig" (something like "Type Design Friday") long before we decided to start Bleifrei.

We met every Friday to discuss the type projects we were currently working on. Somewhat naïve, willing to experiment and deconstruct the conventions at any time. We wanted to preserve these qualities and take them a step further, so we began to build our own type foundry.

At first, we met week after week in a coffee shop. None of us knew how to build a business, but slowly, very slowly, it took shape and what we now call Bleifrei came to life. By the way: Bleifrei means "unleaded" in German. Then, at some point, we moved into a space in a shared atelier in Bern. Since then, we have invested many free minutes and a lot of heart and soul into the company and are happy that we are finally launching this website.

Our visions for the future

After spending a long time on web design, setting up a company and many other administrative tasks, we can hardly wait to finally get back to our main interest: type design. To start with, there are only a handful of fonts that we can offer. Such a project, after all, requires a lot of time, attention and polish. But we plan to continuously expand our portfolio with new text and display fonts, always driven by our interest and desire to get better at what we do. In addition, we intend to keep doing conventional design projects, as we believe that type design and graphic design go hand in hand and always benefit from each other.

Wait, a type what?

While we speak so naturally of typefaces and type foundries, you may be wondering what that is. Maybe you think that a type foundry must be some type of foundry. We are indeed a type of foundry, except that we don't cast anything. We are a type foundry of the 21st century and that means that the typefaces we produce do not need any melting furnaces or other ballast. We draw our typefaces by hand and on the computer, fine-tune all the letters until we like them and finally release them into the wide open spaces of the internet. The resulting typefaces are anything but lead-heavy - they are as light as a handful of kilobytes.

Bleifrei Type
October 30, 2023