Buttons by McAnaraks: Celebrating 900 followers with a giveaway!

***This post is staying at the top of the blog through March 5; please scroll down to see more, newer blog posts!***

My name is Fran and I make buttons.
I started out 20 odd years ago making clothes under my clothing label "McAnaraks" and selling them at craft fairs around Scotland. Steve invents and makes wooden puzzles and resin dice. We met at a craft fair when I asked him if he could make buttons for me to put on my jackets. He said he couldn't. I managed to overcome my disappointment and we got to know each other anyway and we have been together for 19 years now. So it was buttons that brought us together.
Eventually he started making buttons for me to put on the jackets I made. People often asked if they could buy them, but I jealously guarded them for use on my clothing creations. In 2009 I decided to have a go at decorating the buttons, and found that it was great fun and I was quite good at it, so we tried putting a few on sale at one of our craft fairs, they were a hit and "Buttons by McAnaraks" was born. 
The buttons are made from polyester resin which is a liquid plastic that hardens when combined with a catalyst. After the two are combined you have about 20 minutes to pour it into molds before it starts setting. This is a very messy and smelly process which requires the use of breathing apparatus and lots and lots of disposable rubber gloves - so I let Steve do all that side of it out in the garden shed. I stay in the warmth of our indoor workshop and do the arty bits - I decorate the buttons, each one freehand, which makes them all different. The process I use for this is a trade secret. I could tell you how I do it, but then I'm afraid I would have to kill you.
We have to leave the buttons to set overnight before emptying the molds, and I still find this bit exciting even after doing it hundreds of times. I never quite know what I'm going to find.
After a week the buttons are ready to be have their back edges ground, buffed and polished. We then mount them on cards and they are ready to send out to the shops that stock them or to our website and Etsy customers. 
Steve and I still make the things we started out making, but the buttons have become the thing that we spend most time on. It is exciting to have a new product and even more so because it is a joint venture. I think that all of us Button Floozies understand the attraction of a nice button, and I feel very lucky that I spend my time creating them.
 You can see our buttons and find out more about them on our website www.mcanaraks.com.
We also have an Etsy shop www.etsy.com/shop/ButtonsByMcAnaraks
and we are now on Facebook so please join us if you want to keep up with our news and find out about special offers in the future
Fran is generously offering this beautiful collection of buttons -- all that you see in these photos -- in celebration of Button Floozies reaching 900 followers!
Thank you so much for your generous giveaway, Fran!
To win these buttons, please comment on this post only between now and March 5, 2012.
One comment per person, please; if your email address is more than one click away on your blog profile, please include it in your comment. 
This giveaway ends on March 5, 2012, 11:59 pm MST; I will choose one comment by random number generator on the morning of March 6, 2012, and that lucky commenter will get all these beautiful, handmade buttons!
Please note: the chosen commenter will have 48 hours to respond to my email/announcement that they have been chosen; if I don't hear from them within 48 hours I will choose an alternate winner.


Bev said…
Love these buttons! Beautiful! Thanks for the giveaway! Bev
I absolutely LOve Buttons... They are beautiful and would make a wonderful addition into my home...Thank you, for allowing me to enter....
Beautiful buttons - and a real temptation to all of us Button Floozies! Thanks for offering them as a giveaway. I have to stop typing now. It's too hard with my fingers crossed. lol
The buttons are soo cool I would definately save them for that special project! So generous of you to share.
Thanks for the chance,
Linda Sue said…
WOW! I do love these artful buttons! I never win anything so I am going right over to etsy to see what I can buy1 Clever beautiful buttons!!! Just in case but not at all likely- lindahoof@comcast.net
these buttons are really tiny works of art!! SO beautiful and please count me in for the giveaway...what an honor to have a chance to win them! Thank you and congrats on 900 followers, dear Laurie!!
Createology said…
Handmade buttons that are lovingly made are wonderful. These are beautiful and I would be honored to win them. Thank you Fran for being so generous and Congratulations Button Floozies on 900 followers. Blissful Buttons...
These buttons are magic and anyone would be a queen to win these handmade treasures. Imagine and Live in Peace, Mary Helen Fernandez Stewart

Unknown said…
Hi Fran thank you for such a lovely give-a-way...Your buttons are awesome and any of us would be lucky to have them.
Sarah Sequins said…
Beautiful buttons, Fran! I love how colorful they are.

Love the story of how you and Steve met, too. I'm a sap, but I love it when creative people find each other!
Sherry said…
Beautiful and unusual buttons. Thanks for the chance of winning - and congrats on reaching 900 followers!
jackie said…
Very beautiful buttons! Thanks for the opportunity to win!

jackie smith
Ari said…
I love buttons! Beautiful buttons!
Thanks for the giveaway!
Mosaic Magpie said…
Wow, the buttons are beautiful! What you told us about the process is enough for me to know that Steve should continue to make them! That is a heck of a lot of work!
Gill said…
Wow! what amazing buttons!
I would love to win some!!
Lelia said…
thx for sharing Fran. They are colorful and delightful!
lorraine said…
seriously gorgeous buttons..id love to win and adorn my knitted sweaters with these beauties :) raineoc@yahoo.com
I would love to win buttons....They are so beautiful!
marilyn said…
Oh, so glad that hubby came over to your side and made the buttons. I love the smartsy, artsy look you give them. Makes me kinda want to snip the buttons off my clothes and replace them with these beauties.
Oh, beautiful buttons, throw my name in the hat!! What a great story, I have never thought of the button making process.

Linda H said…
OOOHHHHH! LOVE your buttons! Please count me in for the giveaway !
Nancy Lynn said…
I just your blog. Wow. I love your buttons. They are so beautiful and unique. Thanks for the chance to win some.
Lorraine said…
Your buttons are beautiful and I love the story behind them.
Laura said…
I'm a closet crafter finally coming out into the open and working on a handcrafting business. Your buttons would add such a special zing to some of my products! If I don't win, or even if I do, I will soon be ordering from you. And yes, I still have many of my grandmother's old buttons. Great work Fran!
Jane S. said…
I just bought some of these buttons yesterday, but it certainly wouldn't hurt my feelings if I were to win these! ;)
sjmcdowell said…
Hi Jean,

Wow what a fantastic giveaway!! The buttons are extraordinary!!
I would be over the moon if I won!! Please add my name and thank you so much for the chance!

Blessings and Hugs,

Bev said…
These buttons are AWESOME Fran!! What a generous gift to us floozies too! Thank you!! This is such an involved process, but the results are way worth it!
Anonymous said…
Fran, thank you for your lovely post and the history of the buttons. Your buttons are quite lovely!
Poodle said…
i absolutely loved reading about your story and how you met your partner and eventually developed this truly amazing, delicious and gorgeous range of buttons! the colours and textures are so luscious, they are a fashion statement in their own right, so now the dilemma is to choose WHICH buttons to put on WHAT outfit ... or perhaps this is an occasion to take a leaf out of The Emperor's (he of nekkid splendour fame!)book!!!
Anonymous said…
How cool that she got some custom buttons and a beau, too! They are lovely! I am off to check the Etsy Shop!
Such fascinating buttons! Love the asymmetrical one. ; )
Lee said…
These are very pretty-- they look like ceramic! Thanks for sharing!
Kim Stewart said…
I am in awe at the beauty of these buttons! They are gorgeous!
Jester said…
Utterly gorgeous buttons!
Emily H said…
These are amazing!
Sharon said…
Please throw my name in the hat for the giveaway. Beautiful buttons!
Anonymous said…
I would love to use your unique buttons in my hand crafted fiber creations.