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Olivetti 32 note cards may be future ephemeral collectibles

Typewriters may be a thing of the past when it comes to business, but not when it comes to serious appreciation from collectors. In the latest 'Things We Love' column, Print Editor Karen Knapstein shares how the new Olivetti note cards demonstrate that fact.

By Karen Knapstein

Typewriters are, for the most part, no longer practical. They take up a lot of space for the little bit we might use them. However, many of us have a nostalgic connection to typewriters because we learned how to use a keyboard not on a computer but on a typewriter. Or maybe we’re fans because typewriters are simply retro-cool. Each design is a mechanical marvel in itself.

Olivetti 32 Pays Tribute to the Age of Typewriters

Olivetti note cards

Olivetti 32 note cards.

Princeton Architectural Press recognizes the attraction many people still have to typewriters – specifically, the Olivetti 32 – in a set of notecards recently made available.

When we received notification of the new product, the announcement said, “The Olivetti typewriter is an icon, both as design object and as the favorite writing tool of authors as diverse as John Cheever, Leonard Cohen, and Francis Ford Coppola.”

I thought that was interesting; making connections between significant cultural figures and objects or products always gets a foot in the door with me when it comes to further consideration.

The pitch continues, “With classic red-and-black printing on off-white paper, these cards are the perfect all-occasion notecard for the typophile, design maven, aspiring writer, or anyone who reveres the printed page.”

It sounded great to me. And, since I believe in the significance of ephemera, I requested a set for review.

What You Can Expect

The set arrived well-packaged for shipping and in flawless condition. The box holding the note cards is sturdy and attractive – perfectly suited for gift-giving. The print quality is exceptional. The designs and coloring on the cards truly look as though they were created with the red and black ribbon of a typewriter.

Antoinette Rahn, who has been using them for correspondence with Advisory Board members, says

Olivette note cards displayed

Olivette note cards are intriguing, stylish and a wonderful vehicle for sharing a heart-felt message, that may be come cherished ephemera.

she really likes the note cards, as well as the envelopes. “I like the paper stock,” she says. “It feels like I’m sending something special.”

The fine quality card stock and paper stock that the envelopes are made to prevent bleed-through when using a marker. Plus, it assures cards and envelopes hold up through the delivery process.

If you still enjoy sending hand-written messages, whether for special occasions or creating an occasion yourself by sending a message “for no reason,” you will enjoy using these cards.

If you make your message memorable enough, who knows? Maybe someone will be enjoying your message as an ephemeral treasure sometime in the 22nd century – or beyond.

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