Smith and Corona 1970s Manual Portable Typewriter




I went with a friend Friday to the Old School House Antique mall in Washington, Louisiana. Always a fun experience. If you have never been, you should check them out sometime. They have a cafe as well, so you can go and spend the day hunting for treasure and stop and have a bite to eat when you are ready for a break.

I was looking for vintage commercial wood spools and bobbins for a large jar on my living room mantel. I managed to find some and bought 19! Yay! I was very excited about that. I also picked up some anchor motif gold vintage buttons from Woolworth for some of my crafty projects. But, as evidenced by my blog post title, my biggest score of the day was a 1970s Smith and Corona manual typewriter. A lot of my online scrapbook friends own typewriters and they are definitely making a comeback across several different demographic groups, but I have been personally very skeptical about the practicality of owning a typewriter. I wondered how people stored them and if its worth the bother of getting it out to use. If you leave it out, how much room does it take up? Just a few random things that have crossed my mind.

I saw this little portable typewriter in its case and decided to check it out.


All of the keys except 2 worked. The carriage return drug a little bit and the keys were slightly gummed up. I decided that I would give the little typewriter a try and purchased it for $30 that was more than what I wanted to pay for something I knew would have to be fixed and ultimately may not work, but $30 was the lowest she would go. SOLD!! (To a sucker maybe? Lol)

I brought it home and researched cleaning it. Before I purchased it, I did look online (love smart phones!) to see if ribbon was available for it. I have made that mistake before. I bought a vintage camera to play with only to find out that film for it was obsolete… But that’s another story. I bought denatured alcohol and followed this tutorial on how to clean a manual typewriter, oiled the carriage wheel with a tiny, minuscule amount of sewing machine oil and plopped in a new ribbon. Steven was able to reconnect the “Q” and “2” (my smart mechanical techie guy–love him!!!) and I fiddled with some of the arms that were bent to get them back into alignment.


Cleaning it with the alcohol helped a lot. It flushed out a lot of small dirt particles. Dust is a manual typewriter’s worst enemy. That is also the reason many restorers recommend you do not oil the key arms because oil + dust=a gummed up machine. I only put a tiny bit of oil underneath the machine on the return wheel. While that did help the carriage return move a bit more easily, I see that there is something wrong with the backspace key and that is what is causing the manual return to drag. Everything else is all shiny and it works great!!!!! I can’t manually return it (push on the lever and it go back to the ready position), so I have been working around that, but Steven is going to look at it and see if he can reconnect/fix whatever it is that is causing the carriage to be sluggish. Anyway, this is probably more information than you wanted to know!!!

Annnnnnd…. Here is how it types:




I have already put it to use for my scrapbook. This so much fun! It should be illegal.

Piecing together porch planters

My brother took the idea I had and he and Steven put together one of the front porch planters today. He cut the side slats first so I could stain and paint them. I bought 15×15 plastic plant pots to set into the planter. Here are a few pictures of us putting one together today. I still have to stain the top and feet. When I put the other three together I will take pictures and a tutorial on how we did it. Everything but the plastic liners was leftover stuff from other projects. I paid $24 for the liners at Home Depot. The side slats came from when we had to cut porch boards down to match the existing porch board size. The other pieces are left from misc. projects. The paints, stains and wood screws were leftover too.







***Update: sorry the pics are posted in reverse order. I am still trying to figure out the iPhone WordPress app. Anyway, here is our one finished planter installed on the front porch. It looked huge on the back porch, but it looks tiny on the front!






It’s hot…mama!

Taavi's Summer Resting Spot

With temps climbing into the 100s….it is no wonder I find my dogs sitting on the AC vents!  Lol…Steven was trying to convince Taavi to move yesterday.  Steven was propped up by the counter, checking his Facebook messages, enjoying the AC breeze, when Taavi walked in and flopped down on the vent effectively blocking the cool air for anyone else to enjoy.

Summer in Louisiana!

Cenla Focus – About Town

About Town Andrea and Donna

I am off for the summer, but I came in to work while Vivian is at Grandma’s house, to help out my employer.   I was flipping through the Cenla Focus and saw my picture…hahaha.  This totally cracked me up.  I knew the photographer was buzzing around but I didn’t know who he was or the picture was going to go.  This cracks me up on several different levels.  Firstly, because people are probably wondering “Who is this chick?”….secondly, because I lend a whole new definition to the term “white”; and thirdly because right under me is my beloved friend, R. R. Sr.  The man who called me up, cussed me out and slammed the phone down in my ear.  Shame, shame.  Let’s just say I was new to town, I had no idea who this family was and I was not trying to make their life miserable, I was just concerned about my neighborhood.

Anyway…it was my laugh for the day.


My Little Klepto

Sparky and Vivian

My dog has a habit.  Yes, he does.  He likes to pilfer small objects, most notoriously, pens.  I just caught him scoping out a fuzzy topped green pen of Vivian’s.  I saw it when it caught his eye.  He stood under the desk contemplating how to get to it.  I moved her chair away from the desk.  I have found three pens in his kennel this week!  He loves pens.  There’s just something about them.  But, his pilfering is not limited to pens.  Generally, whatever he finds on the floor will end up in his kennel.  If you set something down and are looking for it, chances are you will find it in his kennel.  When we were sheetrocking the laundry room addition, he came in and out the kitchen taking sheetrock screws. 

I had a friend of mine come by and wire up some outlets and also to work on the laundry room addition.  He happens to be deaf.  I was not in the kitchen when he was working, I was elsewhere and I forgot to warn him of Sparky’s habit.  Anyway, he set his screwdriver down on the floor and he could not hear the dogs.  Sparky sneaked up behind him and stole the screwdriver.  He buried it in his kennel. I found out later that my friend looked all over for it, inside the house, outside the house, in his truck…he finally found it in the kennel (I forgot to ask him if he purposely looked there, or just happened to glance in the kennel and saw it).  I laughed so hard.  Oh, that dog!

I have found barbie shoes, sheetrock bits, many pens, lids to hair spray bottles, plastic bits, socks, you name it!  Whatever he takes a fancy in that day, or whatever he finds on the floor, ends up in his kennel.  What am I going to do with that dog?

Ok, I couldn’t help but coming back and amending post to include some hilarious videos of other klepto dogs.  It seems that Sparky is not alone in the world, nor are other dog owners.  The first one is a poodle who goes to great lengths to pilfer items, this definitely is Sparky.  The thing is, I usualy don’t catch him and I wonder how he got such and such from on top the desk or counter.  I always fussed at my daughter for leaving things on the floor and it turned out that he actually retrieved them himself.

Hahaha…and this dog is serious about his stealing…