Westport typewriter store aims to shift gears

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Kessler says she finds using a typewriter therapeutic. Kessler says she finds using a typewriter therapeutic.
WESTPORT -

It may be the age of computers, tablets and smartphones, but if those aren't your type, a new store in Westport may have the "write" stuff for you.

Karin Kessler's Backspace Westport has all sorts of typewriters -- everything from collectibles to functioning machines to fun, novelty items.

You can even come in and rent a typewriter to use at a desk inside.

The store is on Church Street South just off Post Road. It's open Wednesday through Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Kessler says her love of typewriters began a few years ago when she was trying to figure out gifts for her teenagers. She says she wanted to give them something that would get them to put down their digital devices.

After settling on a typewriter, she says she's the one who ended up reeled in by the machine.

She says she began researching and collecting them: old ones, modern ones, machines with different fonts or keyboards in different languages. The hobby started to fill up her home, so she says that's what led her to set up a business and sell them.

Kessler says she finds using a typewriter therapeutic. It's a way to unplug and reconnect.

"Now, a computer, you can just type really quickly, backspace, delete, spell check -- algorithms tell you what you're going to say next, what your next word is going to be," she says. "But here, you really need to think about your next word."

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