The Typography of Mad Men +
Over at Mark Simonson there’s a great post about the typography in Mad Men – from the office to the house to the fake grocery store. At the end of the article he takes note of how old and decrepit many of the authentic vintage props look. I hadn’t thought about that before. Here’s some commentary on the Sterling Cooper sign seen above:
Then there is the Gill Sans (c. 1930) problem. Gill is used quite a lot in the series, mainly for Sterling Cooper Advertising’s logo and signage. Technically, this is not anachronistic. And the way the type is used—metal dimensional letters, generously spaced—looks right. The problem is that Gill was a British typeface not widely available or popular in the U.S. until the 1970s. It’s a decade ahead of its time in American type fashions.
This makes great reading for any font dork or fan of Mad Men, for extra credit there’s a similar post on the use of Arial in the closing credits at the end.