Monday, July 30, 2012





Saturday, July 28, 2012


Many moons ago I travelled in India and Nepal, both amazing places full of treasures, and I spent a lot of time on a mission to seek out embroidery and buttons to use back home on the clothing that I made and sold. Most of it is gone, but today I was sorting out a box at the bottom of the wardrobe and came across these buttons.

I bought them in a shop in Kathmandu, and they are made from horn, or bone, I'm not sure which. Since they have been there for 15 years I think I should keep them, and maybe put them on a garment that I am going to wear myself. Then again I think they look good as a display, so maybe I'll mount them and put them on the wall. Hopefully one day I'll make it back to Kathmandu, and if I do I'll be seeking out that shop again.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Dye Job (Color, Rinse, Set)

Before I begin my first post here, I'd like to introduce myself. My name is Megan and I have two vintage shops, both named autena...trinkets and treasures, one on Etsy and the other on Artfire. I have been a follower of Button Floozies for several months, finding this delightful blog by accident on the Internet when searching for blogs on buttons.

Laurie was kind enough to invite me to write occasionally here and I am excited to be able to share a post that I originally wrote about on my own blog, autena, a few weeks ago. When I discovered that it was possible to transform buttons by dying them, I was intrigued and, if you have never heard of this before, you may be surprised and amazed also.

Not too long ago, I came across a blog that explained how to dye buttons.
What a great idea! I had no inkling that could be done. 
Now that I know, of course, I have found other sites that show how to do it, including Rit Dye, who make the most widely available dyes.
After pinning some related material onto one of my Pinterest boards, the thought stayed in my head that I could dye that huge bunch of white plastic buttons taking up space in my storage that no one seems to want because all button people have them. Of course, a fair amount of time passed before the word became the deed, so to speak.
Finally one lovely warm sunny day about two weeks ago, I decided to jump in and DYE!

 My generous hubby set up a "table" for me outside on the driveway, 
not far from the water tap, because of all the required rinsing.

Here is some of my equipment...
...rubber gloves (don't want rainbow hands), 
instructions (always a good idea for a novice),
plastic tablecloth (to avoid dyeing the work area),

and the old buckets and cans for the dye mixture.

Okay, psyched up to start, but a bit nervous, I couldn't decide whether to include the buttons that still had thread on them because someone cut them off the shirt.
In the end, I used them, because why waste them?

Now I apologize for not having photos of the process, but with gloved hands and staining dye, it was too tricky.
I used the three primary colors --- who remembers what they are?

Red, blue, and yellow because  they may be combined with each
other to form the secondary colors of purple, green, and orange.

So with three boxes of dye, I had access to six colors!
It took longer than I thought it would. I didn't leave the buttons in
the dye as long as the directions stated because they immediately
changed colors. I was aiming for translucent more than opaque.
 If I do this sort of project again, I would leave the buttons in the dye for the suggested amount of time,
because they did lose color when rinsing.

A messy job to be sure, but it was interesting
to see the varying hues in the mixture, due to the different types of
plastic and their original shade.
Some were more absorbent then others.
One of the tricks is using very hot water, which aids in the absorption
 of color. Also they need to be rinsed thoroughly until the water is clear,
especially if they will be used on (washable) clothing.
Of course there were a few that did not absorb any color
and they went back into the 'reject' pile...

I had a blast doing this and I was originally thinking of packaging them in cute boxes or containers of some sort and trying to sell them, but I'm enjoying them too much to part with them yet.

I used some of the orange ones in a bracelet I made and they added such a nice little light-catching touch!

Can you find them?

 Here are the instructions, courtesy of the RIT DYE website mentioned and linked above, should you decide to try this at home: 
  • Rit Liquid or Powder Dye: Any color or mix dye to create a custom color.
  • Measuring Cup
  • Measuring Spoons
  • Disposable Plastic Containers for dyeing buttons
  • Spoon for mixing dyes
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Plastic Table Cover
  • Paper Towels

  1. Cover work surface with a plastic table cover.
  2. Decide what colors you like and prepare dye according to the basic recipe below. Liquid dyes are more concentrated than powder dyes so use half as much dye. Always test color with fabric scrap or paper towel before dyeing buttons. If color is too light, add more dye; if it is too dark, add more water.
  3. Basic Recipe: Measure and mix 1 teaspoon liquid dye or 2 teaspoons powder dye with 1 Cup HOT Water. Shake liquid dyes before measuring. Water should be about 140°F. If your tap water is not hot enough, heat some in the microwave or a tea kettle.
  4. Pour dye and water into a plastic container; stir. Make sure container is deep enough.
  5. Immerse buttons in dye solution for 2 to 5 minutes. Stir occasionally and check color frequently. Remove buttons when desired color is achieved. Rinse buttons. Then wash with soap and water, rinse and dry with paper towels.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Easy on the eyes

My latest pile of vintage buttons, on cards.
These colors just make me happy!  I hope you find some button fun this weekend!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Button Floozies to the rescue?

I received a heartfelt request from a button lover who needs to replace the buttons on a suit due to a dry cleaning mishap!
She needs four of these buttons, which came from a vintage suit designed by Yves St. Laurent.
If she can't find the exact buttons, then she needs 6 that are similarly colored/sized/quality.
back view of button
The key is quality; she has tried to get store-bought replacements and they don't look "right" on the suit.
She wanted me to ask for help on this blog; maybe someone has these buttons in their collection, or knows someone who does, or has another idea because they've bought similar replacements?
If so, please comment, or send an email to: buttonfloozies(at)gmail(dot)com.
Thank you!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Another chance

Congratulations to Tee for being the winner of one of my hand painted buttons...  I admit I had great fun reading all the comments and wished everyone could have here's another chance.  a hummingbird on one of my vintage MOP buttons.

Just leave a comment on my blog and I will pick a winner July 18!  I've added a lot of buttons to my Etsy site and am busy painting bluebirds and goldfinches...

Thanks to Laurie for the giveaway and the great job she is doing with Button Floozies.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Blogoversary Giveaway

Hello to my Button Floozies sisters.  I wanted to let you know that I am having a giveaway in honor of my blogoversary.  Visit this post on my blog to see how to enter if you would like a chance to win this little quiltie.

1,000 Follower Giveaway winner!

The lucky recipient of Gerry's wonderful, hand painted mother-of-pearl button is: Tee !!
Congratulations, Tee!
And thank you again, Gerry, for providing a wonderful gift to give a way!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Grab bag buttons

Gosh, I love these little vintage buttons!
They are the best of button grab bags I picked up at an antique fair and an estate sale, respectively!
I thought they might put you in the mood to go junking this weekend!
Mother of pearl and shell...
and interesting carved and molded buttons, too!
There was even a pretty old piece of jeweled trim in the bag...
hand sewn!
If you go out and get some, be sure to come back and show us!
And, don't forget to enter our 1,000 follower giveaway before midnight on Sunday!

Thursday, July 5, 2012


I have never seen such a wonderful combination of colours as these Fimo Buttons that UK textile artist/designer Barbara Jepson makes.
I asked Barbara what prompted her to start making them.  She said that she found it difficult to buy the buttons in the colours she liked, so decided to make her own.

Fimo is a plastercine consistency and can be moulded, cut and the colours blended together.
It needs to be baked in the oven then finished off with a gloss/acrylic medium.

 As well as a functional thing they look good left on the card and mounted in a frame as a piece of artwork.

 If added to a garment it should be hand washed.

 As well as buttons it can be moulded to make pieces of jewellery.

To buy Barbara's Fimo Buttons go to the Craft Room at
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