I am designing a t-shirt based off of the keep calm and carry on poster. I want to use Avenir Next because it comes with my machine and is similar to the original font used in the poster.

If I outline the text and give it to him as a PDF can he legally print it on t-shirts and sell them commercially?

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    This question appears to be off-topic because it is about legal issues. Better to ask an attorney than a designer. In addition, usage would entirely depend upon the license for the font. "Comes with my machine" is not enough information.
    – Scott
    May 15, 2014 at 20:18
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    @Scott I'm not so sure it is off-topic. I know I've had similar questions when working on graphic design projects. I think his including the name of the font and how/why he planned to use it gave plenty of information. May 15, 2014 at 20:43
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    What jurisdiction are you in? The UK is very different to the US, for example. Which foundry/supplier is the font supplied by (what's in the copyright string in the font)? The UK is blessed with specific and explicit law. But it may not be relevant in this case. May 15, 2014 at 20:55
  • Read the license that came with the font.
    – DA01
    May 28, 2014 at 20:40
  • You tend to find that fonts that come with a computer are licensed to that one computer, and no further. This may help.
    – Paul
    Mar 16, 2016 at 12:35

3 Answers 3


What you can and can't do with a commercial typeface is outlined in the End User License Agreement that comes with the typeface.

Typically, most fonts can be used as you see fit once you purchase the license. Some have restrictions, however, in regards to the extent that the typeface is the product.

So, for example, a font used on a t-shirt, likely not a big deal. Using the font to create custom stamps? That's probably going to require a separate license.

In the end, we can't answer this question in a general manner. It's going to be specific to each individual font. If the EULA isn't clear, just email the foundry. I'm sure they'd be glad to give you an answer.


From a strictly legal perspective, I would say the license of the font applies whether it's a path or a text object. I doubt anyone would "come after you" if you went ahead and used it, but personally I would try to be "above reproach" and search for a similar free font.

Here's a post with a similar font for the Avenir Next family: What are Google Webfonts or Typekit alternatives to Avenir Next Pro?

  • @DA01 I stand corrected! Deleted both comments since you added the information as an answer.
    – Yisela
    May 28, 2014 at 21:39
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    ...or licence that font so that you can use it in the required manner.
    – Paul
    Mar 16, 2016 at 12:37

Avenir Next is a commercial font. That means you have to purchase it to be able to use. Well, the price is kinda high for this font.

You may find a similar-looking but cheaper fonts. Here are some of them that I could remember.

Montserrat (SIL Open Font License) and commercial ones (I think they can be at MyFonts or Fonts.com as they are famous): Century Gothic, Core Sans, Equip, Museo Sans, Objektiv, Cera, Modelica, Brandon, Gotham, Proxima Nova.


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