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Monday, September 3, 2012

Button Up

Got buttons? I do! Too many of ‘em…forgotten leftovers of garments tossed long ago. But the character of these survivor buttons beckoned to me for a redefined purpose and new life. I have found a craft* to recycle them and also teach my granddaughter sewing skills.

We gathered rectangles of colored felt and began by tracing circles (using round items, such as a glass) onto the yellow piece, which we used as our multi-button center. I drew several petal shapes on the felt outside that circle, using them as my guides to cut flower shapes.

Other shapes to try are a turtle with a button shell, using green felt to sew the buttons onto, and an orange felt pumpkin with a button rind. Simple shapes are best for the button clusters to stand out, so we used our imaginations when developing our shapes on the felt.

The next phase began with my granddaughter (with my guidance) pulling the needle through the felt and sewing the buttons randomly into place within the center. No pattern was necessary for the buttons, just whatever appealed to the seamstress. This resulted in a sunflower with a button-clustered center.

Finally, we glued magnets to the backs of these colored felt shapes and created a cute/useful button-refrigerator magnet.  

Seeing my button population dwindle was relieving...watching my granddaughter developing “I can do it!” confidence in her sewing skills…priceless!

* Craft for ages 4 and over (small buttons pose choking hazards).

Contributed by Kathy Bolger, Senior Graphic Designer, Today’s Woman magazine


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