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Tips & Techniques > Managing left-over buttons

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Posted by: meanjean
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About meanjean star
TX United States
Member since: 5/4/05
Reviews: 51 (tips: 7)
Skill level:Advanced
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Posted on: 8/27/05 1:33 PM
Review Rating: Helpful by 1 people   Very Helpful by 3 people   
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Both my mother and my grandmother sewed garments for themselves and their families all their lives, as well as doing alterations for pay. I wish I had paid more attention when they were trying to explain things to me. :-)

Going through my mother's things after she passed away, I discovered my grandmother's sewing box that she had saved and inside was an example of the most amazing efficiency. At the end of a project, my grandmother would gather up the unused bottons and string them through a safety pin. This way, they all stayed together. Sometimes she had to bend the pin a little to accomodate the diameter of the bottons.

I'm going to start doing this too. Keeping them on the paper cards they came on takes up too much space. And just dumping the loose buttons in a can or box makes it really difficult to find all the matchs when you need them.

Hope this helps someone.

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SewVeryTall said... (8/30/05 4:36 AM) Reply
I inherited a lot of my grandmother's sewing goodies too, especially lots of buttons. She used the double thread she'd sewn the buttons on with, to string the extras with a scrap of the fabric and knot together. Good idea to post this tip, Jean.
Kathy Russell said... (8/30/05 0:11 AM) Reply
I'll be using this idea also, thanks for sharing it.
Jayme girl said... (8/28/05 10:08 AM) Reply
what a great idea thanks a bunch
Babs said... (8/27/05 11:21 PM) Reply
Good idea! I hadn't thought about using a safety pin. My mother did something similar. She strung her leftover buttons on medium-weight string and tied the ends together in a double knot.
Cloud9 said... (8/27/05 4:08 PM) Reply
Hi Meanjean, Thank you for this helpful idea. Finally a system that is so simple that I can follow up on. Great idea you added Carla, about attaching a scrap of fabric. In addition to doing this in my sewing room, I'll even start keeping safetypins near my bedroom closet, where I cut off, those little pesky envelopes from my RTW holding spare buttons. I think I'll also pin a mini post-it page tab and label which item of RTW clothes these spare buttons came from. Thanks again.
Karla Kizer said... (8/27/05 2:49 PM) Reply
And if you spear a scrap of the project fabric on the safety pin, it will be easy to find a spare button for that particular garment....though have you noticed, that the only time buttons fall off is when they are on RTW - and there was no spare included?
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