Version 1.04: Combine Selected Shapes

Well – boolean actions are here, and the first one is Combine.  That’s the big update for 1.04, but you may notice something else before that – we slipped in new icons for actions in one of the previous patch updates:


Like before, these actions are contextually shown or hidden, based on a variety of things.  The icon in the lower right is the Combine action, and it shows up if you have two shapes selected. (BTW, you can multi-select shapes by using the pointer tool and Ctrl+Click’ing)

Combine Shapes is going to be kind of a progressive feature.  It works for the most part, but we’re still encountering edge cases where it fails.  That’s where you come in!  Please try out the combine feature, and if you repeatably run into an issue combining two shapes, please email us ( your Glyphr Studio Project File (.txt) and tell us which two shapes you’re combining.  We are also going to continue to thoroughly test the feature, and fix any edge cases we find.

Going forward, once the Combine algorithm is more solid, we’ll be implementing some related features:

  • Combine more than two shapes at once.
  • On the back end, combine shapes and make them semi-transparent for overlapping glyphs in Kern Groups.
  • Provide an option to combine shapes within a glyph on export – to simplify and minimize font data.

All this stuff will be happening over the 1.04.x milestone, so stay tuned!

Version 1.03: Rotate

So, I know we were going on and on about Boolean Combine… I was having a nice discussion with a Glyphr Studio user over at GitHub about Rotation, and I got to a point where I realized I could actually do the rotate feature in less time than it was taking to talk about it.  So here it is!


It also works for Component Instances… but due to how adjustments are applied to Root Components, there could be some wonky results.  It boils down to this: there is an extra property on Component Instances called “Rotate First”.  If you want to rotate, flip, and adjust the size of a Component Instance, try to do the rotate as the very first action, or the very last action.

If you are curious, it has to do with rotating shapes about their center point. If you do a Resize-Rotate action, it will create a different shape than a Rotate-Resize action. Wierd!


Version 1.02: Multiselect Path Points

So, we took a little time off over the summer, but v1.02 is here – multiselect Path Points!  When the Pen tool is selected, just press the Ctrl key, and all the points for all paths will be shown. While holding the Ctrl key, clicking more points will multiselect them.  That’s right – select many points from one path, or many points from across different paths, and edit them together!

Mostly this is useful for moving a couple points at the same time, but any action you can do on one point can also be done on many: Nudge, Insert, Delete, or Reset.

Go try out the new feature and let us know if you find any bugs! We have some performance improvements that we’re also working on.  And v1.03 will probably be Boolean Combine (which sounds like an event at the Nerd Olympics).

Stay Tuned!

Version 1.01: Multiselect Shapes

The first minor update to Version 1 is here!  Now, if you have the pointer / shape edit tool selected, holding down the ctrl key while clicking shapes will enable you to multiselect those shapes.  After that, you can move, re-size, or take actions on that set of shapes.

This feature has been a long time coming, we know it’s one of those basic things people expect to be there.  And, don’t worry, the Version 1.02 milestone is already set – we’re going to add multi-select for Path Points as well.  All these features are actually laying the groundwork for boolean combine features (Combine two shapes, subtract one shape from another, split shapes where they overlap, etc…) so stay tuned for that.

Try out the new Shape multiselect feature, and let us know how it works out!

Version 1!

Party Time!Hooray! We are very pleased to announce that Glyphr Studio Version 1 has just been released!  It’s live right now at  Go play with it, and please let us know what you think!


What’s New?

Originally we were just going to implement Import Export OpenType Fonts for V1… but we took a not-so-little detour through the land of Components.  The more we thought about it, Components was going to be a massive change to the codebase, so it was better to get it out of the way before we slapped the ‘V1’ label on Glyphr Studio.  But, as a result, you can now import and export OTF / TTF files (yay!) and you can use Components.


Linked Shapes were the original idea – being able define a shape once and re-use it across many glyphs.  In practice this is a good idea, but it also falls very short of what is useful in real font design.  Components are the super-charged version of Linked Shapes.  Components can contain as many shapes as you want, and are basically stand-alone Glyphs that aren’t directly mapped to a character in the alphabet.  Once you link a Component to a Glyph, you get a Component Instance.  Component Instances can not only be moved, but also re-sized and flipped.  Additionally, you can use any regular Glyph or Ligature as if it were a Component.  Go crazy with nesting and linking!

Import and Export Fonts

This was the big feature we were waiting for, and thanks to OpenType.js – it’s here!  There are some caveats – for example, Kern values and Ligatures can’t be exported at this time (You can check out details on the File Formats Help Page).  But, as OpenType.js adds features, so will Glyphr Studio.  It’s the beginning of a beautiful relationship!

Help & Documentation

One of the big things we did to speed up releases is to move the Help file to it’s own site:  Check it out and let us know if we can improve any of the content.  It’s also hosted on GitHub, so if you are GitHubSavvy, you can actually write or improve articles directly!

What’s Next?

Well, we have a lot of ideas.  Please let us know what you’d like to see happen – user feedback is the main way we decide what to do next!  Part of the overall changes we made in preparation for V1 will allow us to have much faster releases.  Where the last few Betas took a few months to complete, we now plan to ship new features and bug fixes as soon as they are complete – maybe even monthly or weekly!

So stay tuned – and drop us a line to let us know how we’re doing!

Roadmap to Version 1

Even though Glyphr Studio is close to 5 years old, it’s only been in the past year or so that things have really started to pick up.  Learning about all the tools and concepts that go into designing a font, then creating them and shipping them as a web app has been a fantastic learning experience.

But we’ve always had one little feature that was a “must have” before we felt comfortable moving Glyphr Studio from Beta to a fully-fledged Version 1.  And that feature is being able to import and export a font.  No-duh, right?  It turns out that this is pretty complicated to do using only JavaScript and a web browser.  We had so much on our plate that we barreled forward with the huge list of other features first… before we knew if import/export was even possible.  Even though Glyphr Studio has a bunch of awesome features right now, it’s always seemed awkward to have a tool that helps you design a font, but isn’t able to save a font.  We’re right there with you.

That’s why I’m excited to announce that there will be no Beta 6.  Before we work on anything else, we’re going to integrate with OpenType.js – a fantastic open source project that uses JavaScript to import and export OpenType and TrueType font files.  Once that happens, we’ll move Glyphr Studio to Version 1… and it will be time for some party hats, confetti, and champagne.

Time to move faster…

Up until now, we’ve had a model where we choose roughly 3 large features, and a handful of smaller features, and bundle them up and ship them as a Beta.  Doing this usually took a few months.  From what we’ve learned through Beta 5, we’re also going to change this shipping cadence.  After v1 we’ll simply ‘publish’ new features right as we finish them – reducing time between updates from months to weeks or days.

In order to accomplish this much faster pace (and get y’all features faster and fix bugs sooner) we have to make some tweaks to our process.  We’re removing some of the cumbersome stuff from the code base – namely the example Glyphr Studio project (aka the Sandbox feature on the website), and the Help Documentation.

The Help Documentation will get it’s own GitHub repository, so you can suggest changes or file issues against help documents that aren’t so helpful.  It will then be published to whenver it’s updated.

We used to have two build processes that resulted in the /online and /sandbox pages.  We’re going to remove the built-in example project from the code base, and also remove the /sandbox page on the website.  Instead, we’ll make it easy to open example projects from the start screen.  Having quick access to some example fonts is good to have for people just starting to use the tools… but having to ship two versions of each Beta was kind of a pain.

These two changes, plus some other backend stuff we’re working on right now, will ultimately help us ship as fast as we want to.

Lastly, THANK YOU!

We owe so much to the community of font designers and developers that has sprung up around Glyphr Studio.  User feedback is the primary way we prioritize what our next steps will be.  Keep the emails and tweets coming, we thrive on interacting with people.  Hopefully the changes that we roll out for Version 1 will be the beginning of an awesome new chapter in Glyphr Studio history!


… and a little 5.2

Found some annoying bugs in Beta 5.1, so we turned around a quick 5.2 release.  Fixed a few bugs around importing and exporting SVG Fonts, and also fixed a bug around adding points to a new path.

The updates are live on the main site:

Keep that feedback coming!

Ring in the new year with Beta 5.1

more pen tool

Unfortunately, this reference is 15 years old, which makes me feel old.  Fortunately, we had tons of great feedback on Beta 5.  So we turned around and addressed some of the bugs that people helped us find. Thank You!!

And, since we couldn’t help ourselves, we added some shiny new stuff, too.  We made some performance enhancements that should make using the canvas more buttery-smooth.

But more noticeably, we revamped the canvas editing experience with some new custom cursors, and a new “Add Path Point” pen tool.  This allows you to add a new point anywhere along a path without changing the shape of the curve.  Bezier math was learned, a good time was had by all.

Sometime in the new year we’ll start on Beta 6 in earnest… we were thinkin’ Direct Export to OTF, Better Test Drive Experience, and maybe some Multi-Select?  Haven’t decided for sure yet, but you can vote for new features and let us know what you think over at

Until then, head over to the main Glyphr Studio site to start using Beta 5.1 today!  Happy New Year!

Beta 5, the best choice for your holiday season.

Beta 5 is ready for action!  You can get it at (duh).

Thank you everyone who submitted feedback and comments for this release.  We are well on our way to a full ‘v1’ release, hopefully Beta 5 will rock your socks off until then!

Another big addition we are announcing is a new way to provide feedback.  Over at you can vote for new features and improvements, or suggest your own.  Check it out, and let us know what you think!

Major Features

  • Import and Export SVG Fonts – You can now open and save SVG Fonts straight from Glyphr Studio.  On the roadmap for Beta 6 is importing and exporting Open Type (.otf) files, but SVG Font is just a small step toward our overall goal of importing and exporting all font file types.  Luckily there are many free online services that can convert to and from SVG Fonts… so getting the font format you want is just a hop away.
  • Kerning – Once you have your character outlines looking good, it’s time to see how they look together.  Kerning allows you to adjust the space between two characters, or even two groups of characters with Class Based Kerning.  On the roadmap for Beta 6 is a better Test Drive experience.  So for now you can start with making characters look good together as words – and soon you’ll be able to make sure your words look good together as paragraphs.  Dude, that’s font design.
  • Ligatures – Now you can combine a sequence of characters together into one new super-character… with powers greater than the individual characters alone!  It could be your classic Æ or fi stuff, or maybe even a ¼.  Mash glyphs together as much as you’d like!

Other New Features

  • Now you can copy and paste all the shapes from one character to another.  This can help with designing characters that are similar to each other, or even as a great starting point for designing ligatures!
  • Now you can use two screen design mode for all edit pages, including Linked Shapes, Ligatures, and Kerning.
  • There is now a new streamlined attributes panel layout.
  • We’ve added a new Guide Panel and Custom Guides to give you fine-grain control over what grid and guides are visible, as well as being able to add and customize your own guidelines.
  • In addition to filing GitHub issues, you can now easily vote for new features, or suggest new feature ideas to help decide what the Glyphr Studio team does next.
  • As always, we couldn’t help sprucing up the UI so now it doesn’t feel so awkward at fancy parties.
  • Also as always, lots of back-end improvements and bug fixes, including better and more robust SVG handling.

Beta 4 is here! Happy Fourth of July!

It’s been 4 months in the works, but a lot of great new features have been added to our little project.  And firstly…


…to everyone who sent in feature ideas, pointed out bugs, and tried it out.  Glyphr Studio is still young, but it’s getting better with your help.  In the next few weeks we’ll be asking for more ideas, feedback on Beta 4, and maybe even have a poll to see what goes into Beta 5.

Head over to now to download Beta 4.  Use it, and let us know what you think!  Drop a line @glyphrstudio or

So what’s new?

  • Import SVG Outlines – Now you can use any number of graphic design software to design outlines, like Adobe Illustrator or Inkscape, and import them into Glyphr Studio.  If your design environment doesn’t exactly match your font’s metrics, there are easy scaling options that can be adjusted to make sure each character lands in Glyphr Studio with ease.
  • Full Unicode Support – where Beta 3 only supported the Basic Latin sect of characters, Beta 4 supports the entirety of the Unicode Basic Multilingual Plane (that’s over 65,000 characters).  Easily add Latin Supplement ranges with a checkbox, or add custom ranges for whatever you need.
  • Dual Monitor Mode – Keep the classic compact mode if you’re designing on one screen, or tear out the Edit Canvas to a separate window to take full advantage of your nice big external monitor.

Other New (smaller) Features:

  • There are now Keyboard Shortcuts for most of the things you’d expect – and a keyboard tips dialog box to help you learn them.
  • Along with the keyboard shortcuts came Nudging, using the arrow keys you can move a shape or point by just a smidge.
  • You can now look through the undo-able actions in the History Panel to see just how many times you need to ctrl+z.
  • When re-sizing a shape you can now lock the aspect ratio.
  • Working with Linked Shapes is easier, now with actions that let you turn a shape into a linked shape, and the reverse, turn a linked shape into a shape.
  • You can now bulk transform all the shapes in a character, so moving or resizing all character shapes as a single unit is a snap.
  • Even with a ton of changes under-the-covers, Beta 3 projects can be migrated to Beta 4, just by loading the project normally.
  • Plus lots more – I just can’t help tweaking the UI to make it a little prettier, or refactoring code to make it faster and more stable.  I’m a hit at parties.