Bracket Layers in Variable Font

Hi there!

I am trying to export a font with two axes in Glyphs 3.0.3 (3078) that has some letters with bracket layers.

The static font works perfectly but the variable is not displaying the letters correctly.
I have tried to export the file with Glyphs 2 and works just fine, so it seems that I might be missing something in Glyphs 3.

You can see the setting I use and the results I am getting in the picture below:

Is there something else I need to do in order to make it work properly?

Can you please send me the .glyphs file to support (at) (this website without ‘www’ or ‘forum’). I will have a look.

Can you try to add a Feature for Feature Variations custom parameter with the value: rlig. The default is rclt and Adobe apps don’t seem to support it (any more)?

The problem is that Bracket layers are currently incompatible with the Axis Location parameter (in Font Info > Masters).

I recommend you separate the glyphs into, e.g., oslash and oslash.bold, and set oslash.bold to non-exporting. For static exports, add the Rename Glyphs parameter with oslash=oslash.bold (all the other affected glyphs on separate lines) in the instances where you need it.

For Variable Font export, consider a condition statement in your feature code:

condition 600 < wght < 900;
sub oslash by oslash.bold;

Search for “feature code preprocessor” on this page for more details, A new tutorial is in the works.

Thanks! That solved the problem.

If you add the “Feature for Feature Variations” custom parameter as mentioned before, it should work with the bracket layers, too. The problem is at Adobe apps do not support the “rclt” (that Glyphs is using by default; I’ll change that) feature. It works fine in the “rlig” feature.

Thank you, Georg! I will try that as well.

Hi there, reviving this thread. Still no proper VF integration in Illustrator 28.3. I tried adding the ‘Feature for Feature’ parameter in the ‘Font’ tab of the font info as well as the variable instance with no success. I successfully used the ‘rlig’ feature by manually adding condition statements in a different project. My current project makes heavy use of bracket layers, so doing this manually would take a lot of time. I was wondering if there’s a quick way to automatically generate .bold glyphs from bracket layers in order to speed up the process.

  1. Complain to Adobe.
  2. Have you looked into A simple script is all you need.

I have the IQ of a potato but I’ll give it a try :smiling_face_with_tear:

If your only wish is to use the rlig feature, try adding a custom parameter “Feature for featue variations” in Font Info > Font. Set the value to rlig. Default is rvrn.

That is not really the case. The integration is there, just really buggy.

You don’t need that parameter. It is only there if you like to change what feature Glyphs is using for the feature variations. And the default is “rlig” (not “rvrn”).

No need to do that. Glyphs will add all those extra glyphs and build the feature variations for you. What version of Glyphs do you use? You might need to update to the latest cutting edge version as we fixed a few things here and there.

Then the parameter description is faulty:

I fixed the description. Thanks.

Hehe yup, I fell for the feature description and couldn’t wrap my mind around why the feature didn’t work. rvrn works great. One final question: From what I’ve read, rlig works with most applications, browsers, etc… Is that also the case with rvrn?

rlig still does not work in Illustrator.

I usually use the switching glyphs strategy described in the tutorial and duplicate rlig into rvrn. Careful: rvrn only works for encoded glyphs (not the ones access through an OpenType substitution feature, like smallcaps), because it is executed before everything else. So you may need to rearrange your feature structure

@raoul Browsers seem to support rlig, rvrn, and rclt (I tested in Apr 2022 and posted in this thread)

@mekkablue It seems like Illustrator has some kind of unreliable support for rlig. In the same thread I linked, Georg reported rlig was working for him in Illustrator in some cases, and Stephen Nixon mentioned rlig only worked for him in Middle Eastern Composer mode.

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Not true. I tried it last week and it worked fine. But it seems to by very easy to build a font that doesn’t.