Happy Birthday to Me!

As part of “fun weekend”, DH and I went and visited a place on the other side of the river, called “SCRAP”.

SCRAP — The School and Community Reuse Action Project — is a 501(c)(3) non-profit and our mission is to promote creative reuse and environmentally sustainable behavior by providing educational programs and affordable materials to the community.

Actually, I told DH he didn’t have to go, but he claimed to be interested and curious.

And it was an interesting place!  I’m a big fan of the “reduce, reuse, recycle” concept, certainly on a personal level — but this place takes it up a notch, and adds “art”.  Thus, it could probably only feasibly exist here in odd-but-lovable, green, artistic PDX.

It’s kind of a cross between a thrift store and a garage sale, but all centered around craft items, or potential craft items.  If you are in need of old slides, pieces of tile, fabric, carpet samples, or plastic keychains for some artistic vision you’ve been nurturing in the back of your head, then this is the place for you.  And cheap, too.

I ended up buying a whole bunch of odds and ends:sm_scrapstuff

  • about a ton of 11 x 17 glossy paper ($1.50 per inch),
  • a MOHAIR brush (used to fluff up the fuzz on your MOHAIR garments),
  • some Dylon cold water dye in “Dawn Pink”,
  • five cones of natural color laceweight wool (potentially a MOHAIR blend),
  • a wallpaper sample book,
  • a funky cat stamp,
  • some dry erase board samples (useful for teaching),
  • a book on ribbon embroidery,
  • and another book on temari (which I got mainly for the color and pattern inspiration, rather than any actual urge to wrap embroidery floss around balls.  No matter how decoratively it is done.)

And I only spent about $20 for all these goodies.  Plus I spent at least an hour, just sort of wandering around with my mouth open, looking at all the “junque”.

While all that stuff I got looks like a lot of potential fun — the killer item turned out to be the 4 old Vogue Knitting mags I got for 10 cents apiece.

It was strange, I thought at the time, that I only recognized the covers of two of them.  After all, I have practically all the VK mags from the current incarnation of the magazine, going clear back to the early 80’s (and quite a few from the previous incarnation, in the 60’s).

I bought all 4 mags regardless, thinking I could give them to knitting friends or something.  I hate to see old VK’s languishing, unloved, anywhere.  And there was so much else to gawk at see at SCRAP that I didn’t even crack ’em open, I just bought ’em.sm_VKmags

When I got ’em home, though, I discovered that those two unrecognized issues were unrecognizable for a reason:  I was indeed missing the Fall ’96 and Fall ’97 issues.  And I found both of them in one place, for less than a quarter!!

So I now have TWO old-but-brand-new-to-me VK mags to spend some quality time with!!  I’m considering this to be an early birthday present from the knitting gods, and I plan to save them and enjoy them thoroughly on the Big Day in a couple of weeks (if I can wait that long, that is).

I tried to explain to DH how totally cool this is.  He seemed unimpressed.

I’m really not sure how I missed those two issues in the first place.  My only potential excuse is that in the fall of ’96 we got engaged, and in the fall of ’97 we got married.  This works for me, because then it’s pretty much all DH’s fault.

I also tried to explain how unbelievable it was to find not one, but two missing issues in one fell swoop.  To that end, I even calculated the odds (though unfortunately DH is still pretty unimpressed):

  • There have been 82 issues of VK published from F/W 1982 through Hol 2007.
  •   There were only 7 issues I didn’t have.  Therefore, the chance of picking up any VK mag and having it be one I did not already own was 7 out of 82, or 0.085%.  Slightly less than 1 in 10.  Of course, this is straight odds, and does not take into account the rarity effect — i.e. there are a whole lot more VKs from 2006 lying around out there than ones from 1996, let alone 1986.  I can tell you from personal experience that in reality, the odds are a lot lower than that.
  •  The straight odds of picking up any TWO missing mags is 7 out of 82 for the first one, and only 6 out of 82 for the second one.  Multiply those two together and you get a chance of about 3 in 500.

Now granted, maybe I have picked up about 500 old VKs looking for the ones I don’t have… but throw in the rarity effect, and those odds skyrocket.  I am one lucky girl!

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