Krana Fat is a peculiar display typeface inspired by the lettering of Finnish graphic designer and illustrator Erkki Toukolehto. Where typical digital type is uniform and systematic, Krana Fat echoes the unpredictable and atypical movements of Toukolehto’s wide, flat brush. But this is an homage, not an imitation: While the forms have a soft contour, there are no faux bristles; nor is there an attempt to mimic handmade strokes. Instead, Krana Fat’s identity is somewhere between typography and lettering. It alternately evokes the shape and character of vernacular signage, hobbyist templates, and those institutional alphabets constructed by teams of engineers.
A Krana Fat prototype was first deployed in the pages of the award-winning ‘Die Zeitschrift der Strasse’, a publication found on the streets of Bremen, Germany. Condensed caps were interspersed with occasional wide caps, bringing a dynamic irreverence to the magazine’s headlines. For the public release, Schick-Toikka developed the styles into two individual fonts: A (condensed) and B (extended), adding a lowercase for each. Even as separate fonts, the two styles are designed to be mixed for lively typography. Users can follow the staccato rhthym set by ‘Die Zeitschrift’, for example; or use one style for emphasis within a paragraph of the other; or begin a sentence with B and end it with A. Two sets of compact alternate accents offer more opportunities for variation. Each occupies minimal space above the cap line for stacking dense lines of type or filling pages with the largest possible letters.