Button Bracelets

When my mom made my clothes, she would assign me the task of finding enough matching buttons for the project in her button box. I’d rake my fingers through the shoe box-sized containers full of buttons that had been salvaged from worn out garments. Sometimes I found enough for what I wanted and sometimes I didn’t.

My mom doesn’t sew anymore. I don’t know if it’s because she doesn’t want to or that sewing projects are more complicated than she wants to handle. On our last visit, I asked her if she still had this button treasury and if she wanted to keep it. I was delighted when she said I could take it. I’ve seen some interesting projects on Pinterest that I couldn’t wait to try and a shoebox full of buttons would give me plenty of source material.

As I washed the buttons and sorted them (yes, sorted them. Only by color. I would still be hunching over the counter if I had tried anything more detailed.) I discovered buttons that I remembered. The purple flowers  that I had used as eyes on a sock puppet. The snaps Mom had cut from Dad’s overalls. In one smaller box, I discovered several brown buttons with a crystal in the middle. I suspect these were from Mom’s wedding dress. I’ll save those for something special. Wedding dress buttonsSo what did I do with the rest of the treasures? I made bracelets. The first from some large white buttons. I strung them on elastic string and hopefully knotted them well. 

White button bracelt

This is my favorite. All the buttons are interesting and some seem pretty old.

Shiny white buttons

These buttons all had a mother of pearl finish. Some were green and yellow tinted. I haven’t decided whether to keep this one or give it away.

Metal buttons

This one has a bit of a chain appearance.

There was also a bunch of worn metal buttons. Most were painted blue or black, but some were green and half the paint was chipped away. I suspect these were from my Dad’s work shirts. 

What other things can I do with all these buttons?

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12 comments

  1. Cute bracelets! I’ve got an adorable button brooch one of my students gave me one year. It’s a small lace doily folded into quarters (but not precisely, so you can see all the edges) and then little button clusters are sewn onto it to resemble flowers. I wore it a lot. I also made counting strips for my students with a bunch of buttons – sort of a tactile number line. I’m sure you’ll come up with lots of great projects!

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    1. I love the counter idea. That could be really cute.

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  2. I wonder if your mom knew she was giving you a treasure chest, not just a button box. So cool that the buttons would spark all those wonderful memories. Delightful bracelets. How about making sock puppets for your own kiddoes? I’m sure they’d love finding buttons for the eyes.

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    1. We may have to do some sock puppets. I have a whole bag of partnerless socks.

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  3. I loved the one you wore the other night. It was very distinctive and interesting. You are so talented!
    Wendy

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    1. Thanks! It’s hard to decide if that one is my favorite or the one with buttons from my dad’s shirts.

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  4. Loved the one you wore the other night. So you! I like the one from the work shirts too–looks a little steampunk to me.

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    1. Thanks, T! I’ve been wearing that one just for everyday.

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  5. You are one talented gal. Joselyn. Brought back memories of doing crafts with buttons when I was a kid. I’d like to think I did that with my kids, but just can’t remember. 😦 Will pull out my old buttons to use with the grands for sure. Thanks for a thought provoking post.

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  6. I made a busy book for my daughter with buttons,snaps,zippers and shoes strings. Each pages had a quilted letter and an activity task. For example, “H” had two strips for fabric that buttoned at the bottom of the H. “A” tied across the middle. “N” zipped up the middle.This taught her to button, buckle, zip and tie all by herself. Plus I incorporated Grandma’s tatting lace. She played with it for hours and yes she can tie her shoes with no help from me.

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    1. What a cool idea! I’m saving some bits of Grandma’s tatting for something special too. (I don’t know what yet.) I would like to try tatting again sometime. All I remember is knots.

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  7. The busy book spelled out her my daughter’s name.

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