Vintage typewriters are making something of a comeback, reports Karen Croke in USA Today (3/16/12). “Typewriters are a wonderful marriage of machine-era technology and cutting-edge period aesthetics,” says Chase Gilbert of Kasbah Mod, which sells the old machines. The appeal, says Chase, is cross-generational. “Younger collectors buy the vintage typewriter both for its functionality and its looks,” he says. “They love to see the typewriter sitting right next to their iPad and iPod.”
Plenty of people still type, too, says Chase. “They find that on a typewriter you really have to think,” he says. “Then, too, there are no distractions with a typewriter. You sit down to type and that’s it … You can’t get distracted with Twitter, Facebook or e-mail. The simplicity of the machine is appealing.” However, Scott Paness, who runs a typewriter repair shop, says that, for some, using a typewriter is not about fashion.
“People have them for show, but others definitely use them … These are not collectors … They’re people who have never stopped using typewriters; they’re typing on a day-to-day basis.” He notes that it’s pretty hard to use a three-part form without a typewriter. They’re handy for single envelopes and forms that have yet to be digitized, too. Meanwhile, trendy coffee houses, bars and bookstores are holding “type-ins” and Chase Gilbert says he simply enjoys discovering “quirky, oddball machines.”