Accessing swashes, alternates, ornaments and special characters
This is the question I get asked the most — how do I find the swashes in the fonts shown in the promotional images? Some of my fonts, particularly script fonts, may offer dozens of versions of the same letter, such as the letter y, but there's only one letter y on your keyboard... so where are these super fancy swashy letters located and how do you get them into your design? Here are some answers for you!
Use the Type Tester
The Type Tester, located on any of the font product pages, is a very useful tool for this! Once you've purchased the font and have it installed on your computer, you can style your text with the Type Tester, then copy the text and paste it into your document! Check out this article for more information…
Some programs such as Adobe Illustrator® and InDesign® (CS versions), Quark Xpress 7.0® (and above), CorelDRAW X6® (and above) have OpenType and Glyphs palettes, Click here to download an instructional PDF for Adobe Illustrator® and InDesign®. Click here to view written instructions on using OpenType in CorelDRAW® or watch this video
Standard Utilities on your Operating System
All operating systems have a utility program that can access the swashes, alternates, and ornaments in my fonts. In addition, some programs have an OpenType®, Glyph, or Symbol panel or menu that can be used to find and insert swashes, alternates, and symbols directly into your document.
Operating system’s utility programs include Character Map (Windows), Character Viewer (Mac OS versions prior to 10.9), or Font Book (Mac OS 10.9 and later).
Below are links to instructional PDFs, along with a how-to video for Mac Users (10.6-10.8):
Character Map (Windows) • Video | NexusFont (Windows) • Video
Mac OS 10.6-10.8 • Video | Mac OS 10.9 • Video
Third party software
You can also use NexusFont, a free download (Windows only), or purchase a software program such as PopChar® by Ergonis© or Ultra Character Map. PopChar is a standalone glyphs palette that makes it easy to select and copy the glyph you want and paste it into almost any document/program (Photoshop, Word, Publisher, etc.). If you have, or are planning to purchase one of my fonts, Contact me with a copy of your receipt for a 30% discount code on PopChar.
Microsoft Word® and/or Powerpoint®
With Microsoft Word® and Powerpoint®, you can access the swashes using the Insert menu. First, select the font from the font menu. Then, go to the Main menu, click on the Insert tab, and then click Symbols. (In Word, you will also click on More Symbols at the bottom of the drop-down menu.) The menu arrangement may be a little different depending on what version you are using, but generally it will be found as Insert>>Symbol (More Symbols) somewhere in the menu items. In the pop-up Symbol window, double-click on a letter or click on Insert to insert the swash. With Microsoft Word 2010® or later versions, you may access some OpenType features in the application as well. Magpie Paperworks has an excellent tutorial here.
Die-Cutting Software Programs
For die-cutting programs such as Silhouette®, Sure Cuts A Lot®, Make the Cut™, or Cricut®, access the swashes and alternates by using one of the methods mentioned above and copy/pasting into your document. For additional resources and how-to videos and information, take a look at Kay Hall’s blog.