Vintage Typewriters

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In a world of taps, swipes, downloads and digitizing, a vintage typewriter can seem woefully antiquated — more of a novelty than a vehicle for the next great American novel.

But when antique typewriters are reconsidered not as trailblazing tech but as relics ripe for reinvention, it becomes clear that vintage typewriters still have plenty of potential.

Have you had a long-harbored a fixation for vintage typewriters from some of these greats?





Perhaps you’ve long swooned over their timeless styles yet couldn’t figure out how to justify factoring one into your décor.

Fear not!

We’ve collected a robust list of how to reuse antique typewriters in ways that are both fully functional and totally fun.

Read on to find four ways to add vintage charm to your home with an antique typewriter.

Super-Charge the Guest Book with a Vintage Typewriter

When most of us think of using a vintage typewriter as a décor piece, we consider using it as a stationary object.

While there’s nothing stopping you from plunking down a retro Adler Meteor 12 (for literary buffs, that’s Maya Angelou’s typewriter of choice) on your built-in living room shelving, rethinking a typewriter as an object with a specific purpose completely changes up the dynamic.

So, how can you use an old typewriter in the 2020s?

Consider swapping a standard-issue guest book for a refurbished vintage typewriter. In an official, annexed guest house, set an antique typewriter up in the entry on a credenza or console with a note (typed, of course) that encourages guests to record a ledger of their stay.

In a guest bedroom, a similar scenario can be played out by placing a used typewriter on a nightstand, luggage rack or on a bench at the foot of the bed. Bind previous guests' accounts and leave the leaflet nearby to get your guests’ literary juices flowing.

Vintage typewriters can also be used in lieu of a typical guest book at a wedding.

Rig up a table with an antique typewriter and a placard that encourages guests to dispel a bit of marriage wisdom to the newlyweds. Not only will a vintage typewriter lend an interactive element to a reception, but it will leave couples with a stack of sentiments that feel perfectly time-worn from the get-go.

Optimize an Office with an Antique Typewriter

Between a label maker and a drawer full of grosgrain ribbon, chances are your office already doubles as an arts-and-crafts room of sorts.

Given its ambidextrous nature, a vintage typewriter can actually be a sage addition. Unlike printers that struggle to print on anything that doesn’t fall within the paradigmatic 8” x 10”, vintage typewriters can accommodate papers with a myriad of different thicknesses and sizes.

Set up an antique typewriter on a Console Table or a Side Table and use it as a specialty appliance that can type up recipes on index cards or on gift labels.

Slide children’s’ artwork through a vintage manual typewriter’s ribbon to clearly mark it with a name and date before hanging it on the fridge (or retiring it to a stockpile in the closet).

Pass on Post-It Notes with a Vintage Typewriter

Rework an old lovers’ tradition — the act of expounding on notes written in a passed book or journal — by refashioning a refurbished vintage typewriter as a place to work on a continual family ledger.

What transpires, whether it is a running literary narrative or simply a list of to-dos, is totally up to you!

Since vintage manual typewriters are cordless (a perk not even your smartphone can claim), it’s easy to factor one in just about anywhere. Take advantage of a refurbished vintage typewriter’s lack of begrudging cords and use one as the center of your family’s messaging center in a high-traffic area, such as a kitchen or an entryway.

Whoa, easy there — don’t toss that bulletin board just yet!

Hung above an antique manual typewriter, a bulletin board is a spot-on place to affix your family's dispatches. To keep family members on the same page, consider keeping multiple paper colors on hand and designating them for grocery lists, appointments, urgent messages and more.

Add Novel Appeal to a Playroom with an Old Typewriter

With their delightfully tactile keys and molded plastic shells, vintage typewriters are a kid’s dream, especially since today’s generations tend favor retro products, styles and designs. (Vinyl and 1980s fashions, anyone?)

Give kids a proper place to play with a vintage typewriter. The typewriter can become far more than just a decor piece, but a functional learning tool as well!

Since vintage and antique typewriters forgo modern tech conveniences like spellcheck and a backspace button, encouraging kiddos to type on one can be a masterful lesson in precision.

If you do plan to use a refurbished vintage typewriter in a playroom to encourage aspiring Alcotts and future Faulkers, make an effort to seek out one in a vibrant color.

A red, blue or aqua typewriter will be all the more appealing to your little writer — not to mention, it’s likely to jive better with a playroom’s youthful energy. (Psst! The filter function on this page makes it easy to find a color they’ll love.)

Some antique typewriters to keep an eye out for if you are pursuing a colorful make? Olivetti released a fire engine model known as the “Valentine” in the 1960s that collectors covet.

The Hermes 3000 — a snappy Swiss-made design — also comes in a variety of seafoam hues. Part of the appeal of the Hermes model is its keys, which feature a contrasting mint green color.

Find Vintage Typewriters for Sale

Have we piqued your antique typewriter interest?

If so and you’re looking for a fabulous and functional vintage typewriter for your home, you’re exactly where you should be — at Chairish.

We offer an unparalleled selection of old typewriters that will ensure you’ll find the perfect model for your home.

Happy typewriter shopping!