Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Button painting and pesky holes

Someone  read my button-painting tutorial and asked a question and blogger wouldn't give me her email so I couldn't answer.  But she persevered and reached me through Etsy.  Since the answer was going to be lengthy I thought I would post it here in case anyone is curious how I started or where I got buttons and what about those pesky holes.  Her question was: "When you use putty to plug the holes on the buttons do you take the putty out when you’re done? Which is more desirable?"  and "Where to buy buttons."

I started painting buttons about 15 years ago and I did them to add to each round robin block  as a personal touch.  For a long time dear Susan Elliott kept urging me to paint and sell them... It took a while but I finally listened to her...  At that time a woman sold buttons on Ebay under the name Button Glutton.  She had bought a house that had an outbuilding that was packed with inventory from a turn-of-the-century-button factory.  I initially bought her lovely 1 1/8" blank mop buttons as she posted them on ebay and finally contacted her and bought all she had (400) at $1 a button. After I went through them I bought all her 1" buttons...now long gone.

 Then I started painting the vintage ones with a wire center shanks.  I still have about a quart of these antique ones left.

 The shanks in the center were a problem and I handled it in several ways.







First I incorporated the metal "nub" into the designs....the nose on the rabbit.










Another solution was to take the shank out and paint a design around the hole and someone could attach it with a bead that would blend with the design.

And of course I often filled the hole with putty.











But to answer Andrea's question   when I fill a hole or holes with putty I add a metal shank to the back.  These shanks are readily available on Etsy.



Now the question where to buy buttons... The really old ones are so expensive anymore that it is not practical to paint them to sell.  The antique 2" ones of mine which I used to paint pet portraits on are all gone now. I did the portraits for $25 and I only see this size for sale for around $20  per button unpainted.   I rarely see the high quality vintage 1 1/8" and 1 1/4" ones. You have to be cautious because most of the ones you see on ebay and etsy are newer and  thin, warped and very poor quality. I have been painting for the last couple years on really nice, high quality MOP blanks I found and adding shanks to them.  I did the same as before and bought in bulk when I had the chance.  But for just a few to paint on I would recommend both Etsy and Ebay for vintage ones.

Now having said all that.... who says it has to be mother-of-pearl.... I just happened to start with gorgeous antique ones and became addicted to the luminosity of MOP.  There are perfectly lovely plastic buttons that would work just as well and I have some fantastic old flat brass  ones I've used for barns but would be good for anything...

And I used some of the cheap warped square ones and painted on them to use to back the anniversary quilt...fantastic.

Because of overwhelming vision problems I'm not painting 1" buttons anymore but enjoyed it all the years I did.  I encourage anyone interested to read the tutorial and give it a try.








 

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Carefully Carded Vintage Buttons

I love it when I find buttons like these, that have been carefully carded by a button lover!

 bejeweled
 summery
 sparkly
 shining
 diminutive
 green glass
 black glass
 red glass (plus a bit of plastic on the left...)
dyed shell

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Button collection at the thrift store!

These moments are rare for me, but yesterday when I was thrift shopping I noticed a carded button display in the glass cabinet at the thrift shop.  I really dislike having to ask them to open the cabinets as a rule, at thrift shops or anywhere else, but I was glad I did this time!
Can you see where this cardboard is creased in the middle?  That's where it was folded and put into a plastic bag.  What I saw in the cabinet was actually only half of the button display, which I didn't find out until I purchased it for $3.79.
What it lacks in beauty and presentation, I think, it makes up with charm!  I was initially attracted to it only for the shell buttons...
 but when I got home I noticed the enameled ones, which made me very happy...
as well as the additional quantity of pretty glass ones!  There are a lot of whistles (one holed buttons), too.
The one int he middle with the two diamond shapes is my favorite, and I noticed there is also a smaller version of the exact button, so I have a "mother/daughter" set which always makes me happy.
Mostly, I was just pleased to "rescue" this button collection; it's at least 50 years old, and it was put together by someone who obviously valued them!

What buttons have you found in the wild lately?

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Share about the auction!

We're having fun at the auction, and it continues through Sunday, July 22 at 9 PM.  Here's another fun aspect:

GIFT CARD NEEDS A HOME!!!!
YOUR CHOICE
MICHAELS OR HOBBY LOBBY
Share this group's link on your Facebook timeline, Facebook Business page, Group you are in that allows sharing of other groups, your Instagram page, your Twitter account, your Pinterest page or any other social media share. Let us know by your comment and all the places where you shared. The more you share, the more chances!
Here's the link:
This drawing will take place Sunday at 6pm.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Button-themed Button!

I went to a local button club's sale event Saturday, and will be posting some of the fun and pretty buttons I got there.  Here's the first:
A plastic button of a button card!
How fun is that?

Saturday, June 2, 2018

The "Make an Offer' Jar

I recently happened upon an estate sale and found this jar of buttons; instead of a price, there was a sticker on it that said, Make an Offer.
Unfortunately, it was a cash-only sale and I found I only had $2 and some change with me, so I offered that and went home with the jar.  This morning I had the pleasure of sorting through it!
I could see through the jar that it contained a whole lot of those little "extra button" envelopes, so I thought $2 was probably going to end up being a fair price for it.
But then I saw a whole bunch of full cards clipped together...
and eventually uncovered lots of my favorite buttons -- shell and mother-of-pearl.
There were some pretty glass buttons, too, and these fabulous lucite studded with paste ones, and some that were fancy and beaded.
Overall, I think it was a great haul, and a Saturday surprise.  Have you bought any button grab bags lately?

Friday, May 4, 2018

A Button-y Lampshade

I spotted this three-tiered, button-decorated lampshade at the thrift store!  It's actually a hanging (pendant) lamp/chandelier. 
  It needed some cleaning, but, if I had a place for it, it definitely would have come home with me!

Friday, April 27, 2018

New Buttons in My Life

Here are some of the latest buttons that have come into my life!
 A Salesman's Sample Book full of button pages -- the buttons are very common, but still lovely to see all arranged and numbered by hand!
A lot of new-in-the-package, fancy buttons for embellishing!
These cute "mother/daughter" buttons with an umbrella theme!
Show me your newest buttons!

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Buttons at RoundTop, TX

I was thrilled to finally have the chance to visit the huge antique market at RoundTop, Texas last week!  Please visit my blog for lots of photos!

Monday, March 19, 2018

National Button Week

It's that time again: National Button Week, the week set aside to celebrate buttons and collecting them!
For me, every week is button week, because I love and enjoy all of my collection.  
This is the latest "grab bag" of buttons I bought at the thrift store... 
 and here were my favorite picks for crafting and gifting from that lot:
 These were my favorite cards...
and these were my favorite novelties -- how sweet are those little pink dogs and green ducks?

This is my favorite creation I've made using buttons lately.  I created 10 of these hearts, 8 of which were for a swap.  Everything except the center heart fabric is vintage!  The center heart fabric is part of Andover's Downton Abbey line, and was the inspiration for the whole thing!
The little button bouquet below was a heartfelt gift from a new friend I met through our mutual love of crafting with vintage!
 The buttons on the cards are actually fabric-covered snaps -- aren't they lovely?
How sweet are the little birds on the vase?
Button Floozies, I look forward to seeing some of your current button joys/moments in celebration of National Button Week, March 18-25, 2018!

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

More rescued buttons

I rescued some more buttons bags from the thrift store this weekend, and took time to sort them on a cold, dreary afternoon, which I find so relaxing.
There were carded buttons, many of which were very common and unexciting:
 Common
 Better - complete, and would make for good crafting, as well as nice little gifts
Best - pretty cards, mother of pearl, glass, and charming old plastic -- check out the pretty blue mother of pearl embedded in Lucite card in the middle
There were also these sad little "sick" buttons that would've been so pretty with their pink paste jewels -- but I'm doubtful they can be saved.
Tons of colorful buttons that are perfect for crafts
Some lovely glass and china buttons
including these old, interesting buttons that are like paperweights -- very tiny ovals, with flowers under glass
older embellished "shell" buttons, and some fun sparkly gem buttons
And -- always my favorite -- mother of pearl and shell; I was delighted with the fancy carved ones
It was a fun bag of buttons and gave me an hour or so of peaceful treasure-hunting!

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