About UnderwareFrom flamboyant retail fonts to high-end custom type, Underware does it all
Zealotry wouldn’t be an inappropriate collective noun for Underware. They not only design typefaces, they live type — they educate about type, they publish about type, they talk about type, they want (and organise) others to talk about type.
There is an inherent honesty to their enthusiasm that betrays no snobbery — they simply think that type is very interesting and that everyone, given the chance, might think so too. Their work is among the most popular of independent type foundries — happy-go-lucky, high-quality, text-friendly typefaces for both display use and comprehensive typesetting. Underware’s typefaces stand out thanks to unique aesthetics, finished quality, and a considered collective presence. Underware finds equal pleasure in crafting custom fonts, lettering and logotypes for brands like Mr. Porter, Stockmann, Marco O'Polo, Daimler, KONE and DuncanChannon — and in developing purposeful retail fonts like Zeitung, Bello, Auto, Dolly and Liza. Underware was founded in 1999 by Akiem Helmling, Sami Kortemäki and Bas Jacobs and is based in the Hague, Helsinki and Amsterdam.
One of the founders of Underware. A visionary self-made man and type conceptualist with love for espresso machines and exclusive gsub-programming. Type design postgraduate studies 1998-1999 at KABK, the Hague. Graphic design studies 1994–1998 at the Fachhochschule Mannheim. Born in a town of Druckmaschinen, Heidelberg, Germany 1971. Lives in the Hague, the Netherlands, where he's also involved in the contemporary art center West. Strength: contributed to the bone, sweat & tears. Weakness: espresso. Beard: strong, fast growing. Cat: Volley, black. Never gets tired to watch ASCII TV.
One of the founders of Underware. Devotes his days between designing type, optical illusions, language research, dialects, ambigrams and answering to the fan mail. Type design postgraduate studies 1998-1999 at KABK, the Hague. Visual communication studies at the Art Academy ABK in Maastricht. Born in a village of impressionist painters, Wanssum, the Netherlands 1976. Lives in Amsterdam. Strength: straight lines. Weakness: curves. Beard: beyond style. Cats: Ronja, black & Tijger, brown with stripes. Writes regularly to our blog.
One of the founders of Underware. Left handed lettering artist, script face specialist and uncompromising craftsman. Type design studies 1998-1999 at KABK, the Hague. Graphic design studies 1995–2001 at the Institute of Design, Lahti. Born in a town of carpenters, Kerava, Finland 1975. Lives in Helsinki. Strength: curves. Weakness: straight lines. Beard: long, red brown. Cat: Aamu, red brown. Meeting and greeting in Instagram @underwarefoundry.