Alternating Glyph Shapes with Multiple Axes for Variable Fonts

Hi all!

I’ve got a doubt about how to alternate glyphs in a variable font with multiple axes, for example:

I’ve got 3 axes and I want to modify some shapes in some masters that will do it uncompatible for the interpolation. I can’t use the bracket trick because I’ve got more axes than one, but “rename glyph” would break the interpolation on a VF, isn’t it?

How I would do it?


No, you can use the Bracket trick in these cases. I need to update the old tutorial.

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Any news on that tutorial update?

If the bracket trick works on multiple axes, do they need the same value on one axis like the extreme points do or are those more flexible?
Since it could come in handy to change the $ for example in lighter weights already in a Cd style than in a wide one.

I also tried the “rename glyph” custom parameter and it doesn’t work in a VF.
It doesn’t break anything but the glyphs I wanted to change just stay the default one.

The bracket layers are only respond to the first axis. And what you are trying to do is not (easily) possible in variable fonts. You can switch per axis so only square switch spaces. You are trying a diagonal condition.

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That’s a shame.

So there are two different issued at work here. One is a limitation in Glyphs (I’m working on fixing this). And a limitation in variable fonts. It might be possible to find some workaround. But the tools to play with this are not really made.

are there any updates on this front?

in designspace documents, one can specify conditional substitution rules for given ranges along one or more axes:

how does one accomplish that today in if the output is variable font (not static instances that can be achieved via “Rename Glyphs” custom param)?

I’m thinking about this. Maybe we can sit together and figure something out?

Sounds good. Let’s arrange a hangout some time next week. I’ll email you

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Ping for @GeorgSeifert and @lupocos :wink:

We spoke about it and I have some early ideas. I need to find some time to try it.

Any updates on this?

It is almost finished.


Like finished in March almost? Or finished in 2021?

Any news at this topic?

This is done and works. We are finishing the release.