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I read through a bunch of old threads about Ornaments and Opentype. At the end of the day I'm still confused about how to implement my specific situation. I'm up to my old tricks with banners. In addition, i have small illustrations of things like people and such, plus some flower-type things. All total about 50 glyphs.
For making the 9 styles of banners I have it set up thusly: Using ornm or SS02 typing 1====1 yields a style one banner with four extensions. 2=2 a style two banner with one extension. The = is contextually replaced to match the appropriate banner endings. This seems very user friendly. The argument against is that the actual output has nothing to do with two's or equals. Is the only alternative to hunt and peck in the glyph palette? That would be tricky even when well-ordered because the banner extensions (=) vary slightly which is hard to detect.
What about the non-banner illustrations? Currently there is no feature to access them. I had considered subbing a-z -> orn1-orn26 but that was frowned on elsewhere. These seem less of an issue to hunt and peck for glyphs. Any advice appreciated.