Build it, and they will kern

fontstructYou've visited all the type vendors and searched in vain. There's nothing that quite matches up with the search image in your head. 'I could do a better job myself!' you cry.

Fortunately for you. Fontshop has recently added an interesting functionality to their website: a typeface constructor. The FontStruct site equips you with an array of basic font shapes that can be moved arround lego-like on an underlying grid to form letters. Although the basic shapes are simple, when used in concert, the results are quite sophisticated. A gallery shows the variety of effects achieved by contributors.  Once you have put together your masterpiece (and that might just be an uppercase set of letters, or an extended character set), your typeface can be saved as a truetype font and used out in the 'real' world. Over 160,000 people have signed up with FontStruct and 7,000 typefaces have been saved for public use. At the very least, the site is a worthy educational tool for those interested in typefaces, and reinforces the notion of an underlying grid over which the letterforms are arranged/organised.  Oh, and it is completely free.