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the girl with violets in her lap [userpic]

my icon is TOTALLY APPROPRIATE because asparagus is an awesome crayon! But it misses mulberry!

August 6th, 2008 (02:44 pm)

Why, oh, why, is there no venue in which I can buy retired shades of Crayola crayons?

I take my coloring very seriously. I don't post about it on here very often, which is shocking given that I blog to the point of exhaustion about every single other thing that I care about at all. But, yes, I color and it is very serious business to me. I search the Internet regularly for new and exciting coloring pages; and I will only color with crayons, because there are many people in this world who color with art supplies designed for serious artists, and all those people who color with those art supplies are better than me, but I am QUEEN of the crayons, man. Nobody is better at crayon-coloring technique than me. I can blend and overlay and just generally color the shit out of whatever coloring page you give me, as long as I've got my box of crayons by my side.

But they've got to be Crayola crayons. I will not color with anything else. This is actually an artistic preference, and I am not kidding about that: whatever formula they use in creating their crayon wax is the only one that I find suitable for optimal blending. If you give me a box of RoseArt crayons, I will scowl at it, and then use them strictly for doodling and grocery-list-making, because you just can't color properly with those. Thus it is that whenever Crayola comes out with a new, bigger 'n' better box of crayons*, I'm the first one in line to get it. And then, of course, my old box inevitably gets lost at some point, or someone asks to borrow it (CRAYONS ARE COOL, MAN, EVERYBODY WANTS MY CRAYONS) and never returns it.

I always assumed, you know, that there were other people out there who were as ardent fans of coloring in general and Crayola crayons in particular as I. I knew that Crayola had a habit of retiring certain crayons and having people vote in new colors, but I always thought that it was okay, because there were *sure* to be people selling collections of retired Crayolas on eBay. I figured there would be, like, Crayola dealers, people who would buy up a box of old crayons when they heard certain colors were to be retired, and then sell them at a profit down the line. I'm serious. I really thought this.

I was wrong.

eBay has precisely three boxes for sale containing retired crayons. Now, these retired crayons sound very nice: I am particularly attracted to the idea of having a blue gray crayon, because there just aren't enough crayons on the blue-gray spectrum, and both green blue and maize sound like they would be very useful to have as well. But all three of these boxes contain the *same* eight retired crayons. They are centennial boxes, and as such contain all the crayons retired before the year 2000.

They do not contain the four crayons retired in the year 2003.

I have no access to the four crayons retired in the year 2003.

Blizzard blue, magic mint, mulberry, and teal blue. They are PHENOMENAL COLORS! They are SO AWESOME. Seriously. OK, I could probably do without blizzard blue, which is probably exactly why I stumbled across that one lone crayon in a drawer the other day, lost remnant of a 100-crayon box long since lent to someone I haven't seen in six years. But magic mint? Mulberry? Teal blue? I DO NOT KNOW HOW I CAN GO ON COLORING KNOWING THAT THESE BEAUTIFUL SHADES ARE LOST TO ME. Mulberry would be amazing! There are, like, four dark-red crayons, and NO MORE. Seriously, it's maroon, brick red, and -- and then there's plain red, and THERE IS NOT EVEN A FOURTH ONE. Because they RETIRED MULBERRY. And magic mint would be lovely for cooling down the more intense shades of green that are pretty much your only recourse when you are coloring hills and things -- I have been using spring green for that, but not all hills require an undertone of yellow -- and teal blue is an important ocean-and-river color, people. I'm telling you, it is.

They retired these. All four of them. And do you know what they replaced them with? Inchworm and wild blue yonder, which are meh colors, and mango tango, which is worse... and JAZZBERRY JAM. Jazzberry jam is, bar none, my *least favorite* crayon in the *entire box of 150 Crayola crayons*. It's worse than, like, neon carrot. It's an abomination.

And for this I lost my mulberry.

Also they took thistle out of the 120 and 150 boxes, and the site seems to differentiate that from "retiring" it, but I don't know why, because it doesn't look like you can get that anymore either, and I want a thistle crayon.

Why is my life full of woe? My life is so full of woe.


*About nine, ten years ago it was 100 crayons; then it went up to 120, and finally, this year, to 150, PLUS a badly-needed spiraling display case so I can actually see all the colors I can select from! Huzzah! Also a box of 150 crayons costs like $16 or something, but NEVER MIND THAT, IT IS IMPORTANT. A piano costs like THOUSANDS of dollars, so WHATEVER.


Posted by: Naughty Librarian Lover (llnaughty)
Posted at: August 8th, 2008 04:38 am (UTC)

actually, would those sets include them? i'd think they'd include ultra blue, which is the same as blizzard blue? i'm having trouble understanding what's included in what from this list:


Posted by: Naughty Librarian Lover (llnaughty)
Posted at: August 8th, 2008 05:38 am (UTC)

okay, rereading your post a little closer, i realize that the auctions i linked to above are probably two of the three you found. also rereading the wikipedia list a little more carefully, focusing on the '72-'89 and '90-'92 columns, i think you'd get your desired thistle, ultra/blizzard blue, and mulberry.

i don't think magic mint and blue teal would be included, but on the latter color that'd seem to contradict fanboy_of_zeus, who has access to the actual crayons included.

(the auctions come with 72 crayons, presumably all the ones in the '72-'89 column. they added 16 and retired 8 in '90, making the total 80 crayons. both magic mint and teal blue do not appear until the '90-'92 column, so i wouldn't think they'd be in there.)

Posted by: Damian (fanboy_of_zeus)
Posted at: August 8th, 2008 11:53 am (UTC)

Teal blue is proudly marked as a "new color" in the 1990 box. It wouldn't be in an earlier box, but it is in mine. I wonder if I might have magic mint, too, since you mention that was added that year? If so, I haven't found it yet.

Posted by: Naughty Librarian Lover (llnaughty)
Posted at: August 8th, 2008 04:18 pm (UTC)

sorry, i misread what you had said. i don't think teal blue would be in the boxes of the two auctions i had listed, which, while released in 1990 were i guess the "farewell" products for the 8 they were retiring. your 1990 box was probably a standard box with the then-new colors... *shrug*

Posted by: the girl with violets in her lap (slammerkinbabe)
Posted at: August 8th, 2008 04:27 pm (UTC)

Man, LL, you went all out researching this! O.O Never let it be said that anybody can match your 1337 Google and eBay skillz, man. I haven't had time to sift through all those auctions, and may still email Crayola because a.) I want to know why piggy pink isn't in my 150-crayon box and why they say it is, and b.) I am getting a kick out of this whole situation and would enjoy seeing what they would have to say in response. But those are some srs resources you laid down in these comments, dude. Thank you!

Posted by: Naughty Librarian Lover (llnaughty)
Posted at: August 8th, 2008 04:31 pm (UTC)

you're welcome!

i've been trying to catch up on posts, reading them chronologically, so i hadn't read your piggy pink post until this morning. have you gone through many 150-crayon boxes and noticed piggy pink missing in all of them? maybe you just got a badly packed box?

i think the stutt.com site below will be your best bet for the 4 retired colors you're looking for. i think the centennial tins retailed for $9, so you'd only be paying a $6 premium on them, plus $5 flat shipping, if they still have them.

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