I'm stymied trying to hand letter the text in a one off sign for my yard:

Using Libre Office Draw I centered the text (Liberation Sans, 72pt) in a window sized to the proportions of my sign. I put a bounding rectangle over each word to find the position and size of each word which I used to set masks on the sign.

While I could repeat this to locate the strokes of each letter, it gets old. Is there any way to get this from a font file? I have tried

ttfdump /usr/share/fonts/truetype/liberation/LiberationSans-Bold.ttf

and other linux ttf/fc utilities but I cannot make sense of their outputs.

  • Welcome to GD.SE!
    – Mensch
    Commented Nov 15, 2021 at 0:02
  • 1
    I don't really understand what your end goal is here. Are you looking for a way to get the measurements of each letter? Can you outline/expand text in Libre Office Draw? Else try Inkscape. Once the letters are outlined they behave like ordinary vector objects and can be measured. I assume you don't have access to a printer. It would be so much easier to print and copy the letters (or just the widths) from the print.
    – Wolff
    Commented Nov 15, 2021 at 0:05

1 Answer 1


I'm not aware of a way to do that in LibreOffice, but it's certainly possible do it in Inkscape which is also free and Open Source.

Using the Text tool, type a line of text. Do Path > Object to Path, then Edit > Ungroup.

This will break up the letters into individual objects. Using the Select tool, click on a letter to select it, and read off the width on the tool controls along the top.

For example

enter image description here

You could also remove the fill and apply a thin stroke, and maybe enable the page grid to help you transfer it to your sign

enter image description here

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