At Herman Miller, typography is a critical communication tool. We use it to convey ideas, to organize information, to create clear hierarchies in our messages, and to align our expression across media, geography, and audience.
Herman Miller's corporate typeface is FF Meta, a humanist sans-serif typeface family designed by Erik Spiekermann and released in 1991 through his FontFont library. Herman Miller adopted Meta as it’s corporate typeface in 1996. FF Meta is an important element for communicating the Herman Miller brand.
Like our company, the Meta type family is friendly and modern. Like good seating, Meta works in a wide range of sizes. It makes small copyright lines legible and provides impact for large applications on signs or trucks. Meta also translates well to both printed and on-screen presentations.
We use weight, color, and size as our three primary tools to help people read and understand information. By using each of these tools correctly, you’ll help readers understand the hierarchy of the message, allowing them to focus on matters most and quickly get to the information they need.
To keep things simple and legible, we use three three weight styles for displayed content across all mediums: Meta Bold, Medium, and Normal.
We control type color for consistency and to ensure accessibility.
We suggest using size and our preferred weights to achieve hierarchy and differentiate pieces of content. Subdued is reserved for situations where hierarchy can’t be achieved through size or weight change.
Our digital typography focuses heavily on dynamic sizing, screen legibility, and accessibility. The goal is to establish a desired hierarchy and then scale it across devices proportionally. We use more generous line heights (leading) to support in-line links and easier screen reading.
We create proportional systems of typography that offer consistency and clear hierarchy through all of our communications. The leading, tracking, and margin-after spacing is derived from the size of the text. The digital type scale uses varying base (0) values based on the device size with 1.2x factor increases to create steady proportional size changes.
Line height (leading in print) defines the amount of space above and below inline elements. Digital line height is based on the size of the text and generally includes more spacing on on-screen text than in print.
Accessibility is paramount when designing for Herman Miller. We want to ensure that everyone can receive and understand our message, regardless of any disabilities or assistive devices they may be using. All type color combinations must pass WCAG AA standards of 4.5:1 for normal text and 3:1 for large text.
Not sure if your combination is compliant?
Use the Color Contrast Checker tool.