Monday, October 17, 2011

31 days of sewing: recycling vintage buttons

I am very fortunate to have an extensive collection of vintage buttons. I began collecting Vintage Buttons when I inherited collections of buttons from both sides of my family. Many of these buttons came from my grandmothers who grew up during The Great Depression. Back then, out of necessity they recycled buttons from worn out garments to use in replacing lost buttons or to use in new garments that were made. 
I treasure my Vintage Button collections and keep them on display in my sewing room in vintage canning jars. I love to dig thru my jars of vintage buttons to find just the right button to use in a particular project! 
Several years ago I put my vintage buttons to use in creating some pillows that sit on a bed in our guest bedroom. I was very honored to have my vintage button pillows make the cover of the Pink Issue of Sew Beautiful Magazine in January of 2009.
These pillows were alot of fun to design and make! With each vintage button that I dug out of my jar, I imagined what garment it might have been on in another era!
I think the "A" pillow is my most favorite because it utilizes alot of buttons and creates a unique monogram at the same time!
The bolster pillow is also unique as I used a linen placemat and added a fabric panel in the middle. I then just rolled it around the bolster pillow and added buttonholes and buttons!
For this pillow, I used some of Martha Pullen Company machine embroidery designs that I stitched onto netting lace for the outer edges of the pillow. The center square of the pillow is a quilt block that I created, then embellished with vintage buttons.
Buttons of all sorts, shapes and sizes are fun to recycle and use in home decorating projects! If you have a button collection, start putting them to use on items that you can display within your home decor! Even if you don't sew them on anything, they are beautiful displayed in jars and make a great conversation piece. If you don't have any vintage buttons, start looking for them at estate sales and antique shops - they really are quite addictive!
In the coming months I hope to share more ideas for recycling buttons!


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2 comments:

Cynthia Gilbreth said...

These are great ideas, and very timely as I just won over 100 vintage buttons at the SAGA Convention!

Pro Carpet Cleaning said...

This really does show that there's no need to go spending money in expensive boutiques, when one can do it themselves at a fraction of the cost and with so many more rewards. Thank you! :)

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