My Grandmother had a button box. She would add any buttons from clothes that were worn out and being cut up to use for patches and cleaning rags. Sometimes she bought sets of 4, 6 or more buttons on sale somewhere and brought those back (kept on their cardboard packaging) and put them in the button box too.
As she got older she became legally blind and was no longer able to sew her own buttons (or anything else) as well as she used to. She was always more of a cook anyway. I still remember the white sweater I fixed for her. It had a few loose buttons and one missing. It was one of the very few times I got to look through something of my Grandmothers. She brought out the button box and let me have a look through them all. I found enough new buttons for the white sweater, all matching and all pink.
For years she would brag about how well I sewed those buttons on her sweater. She said I had done them so well they would never come off. I did too. I remember sewing them on and how honoured I was to do something, something real, for my Grandmother. Not just kid stuff playing around. She kept that sweater and the buttons did last years and years.
I still like buttons. I guess I have a soft spot for them. My Mother had a button box. My Grandmother’s buttons became part of that collection in time. My Mother gave me the button box a few years ago, when she started spending winters in Florida. We used to sew together but that was usually around the holidays. Now that I’m alone I still do some baking but not so much sewing. It’s kind of sad. I have that button box but it’s been many years since I last looked at any of the buttons in it.
There are some nice crafts with buttons, like button bouquets. I’ve seen a few uses for them other than the traditional clothing fasteners. One site has old/ vintage buttons turned into fancy rings. I’ve seen scrapbookers use buttons as flower centres in drawings. We have used buttons in place of game pieces. They string up on ribbon and look pretty girlie and pretty too.
Old, Retro or Vintage Buttons
- Flickr: Vintage Buttons
- Flickr: Granny’s Button Stash
- Vintage Buttons
- Fabrics.net: Hooked on Buttons
People Who Like Buttons
- Button Floozies
- Flickr: Button Lovers Group
- Buttons in Time
- National Button Society
- The British Button Society
- Pioneer Button Club
- Google Groups: Button Bytes
2 thoughts on “Old Buttons”
I have been collecting buttons since I was seven years old. I have some dated back in the 1500’s, made from mother of pearl, wood and many different styles and colors. I would love to meet and chat with others that have been collecting as long as I have. Who knows I may have the one button you have been searching for and you may have mine.
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