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Conversational Threads

Covered Buttons

emtharv | Posted in Equipment and Supplies on

I just read the May 2008 issue of Threads (what a wonderful issue!!!!). While reading the article “Revisit Retro Details” on page 44-47 I noticed the buttons on the pink striped dress. Could anybody please tell me where I can find the kit or how to make the covered buttons on the dress? These buttons can also be described as a double covered button. Any help would be greatly appreciated.


  1. starzoe | | #1

    Haven't checked lately but fabric stores always used to have kits to cover buttons, maybe they still do.

    1. emtharv | | #2

      Thank you for replying... yes most fabric and craft stores do carry a supply of the basic covered button kit. I am looking for the one that is a "double" covered button like the one shown in the current threads magazine.

      1. User avater
        CostumerVal | | #3

        Those buttons certainly are unique.  From the close up photo on page 46, it appears that the rounded top is on a different grain than the flat bottom.  Most covered button kits are very rounded.  I wonder if you could get the same look if you used a 3/8" button kit and sewed it over a covered 3/4" washer.  It does appear that the bottom one is very flat and only the top is rounded.

        In some issue of Threads (I have absolutely no luck using the issue index)  There are instructions for making the Chanel button.  A plastic ring is covered with fabric, you then stab stitch around the inside of the ring, sew on a smaller metal top button in the middle and wrap the fabric ends with thread to make a shaft.  I'll keep searching.


        1. MaryinColorado | | #4

          Be careful with metal!  Be sure you are using something that won't rust.  They now have some plastic button covering sets.  I haven't had a problem with the "cover your own button sets".  When I used to make dolls and stuffed animals, I was using washers and things from the hardware store to create joints, some were a problem after laundering! 

          1. User avater
            CostumerVal | | #7

            Yes, you're right about that.  The button kits are 2 piece aluminum and I've used them many times without any wash problems, but washers are often an alloy metal so you have to be sure that they're aluminum and nickel, not iron and nickel.  If you spray vinegar on it and it rusts in a matter of hours it's iron,  if it pits without rust it's aluminum.  But vinegar eats (oxidizes) metal and rock so there will be some surface damage to the washer.

            I really like the idea of the flat plastic button for the bottom layer.  That's pretty fool proof.  I haven't found that threads article on the Chanel buttons yet.


          2. emtharv | | #9

            I think that I am going to try a plastic washer, unless I can find a thin enough metal one (of the right kind of metal).
            Thank you for your advice.

        2. Palady | | #6

          My sewist daughter is a Chanel enthusisast big time.  She's a Threads subscriber and made some of the buttons you mention. 

          Unsure now what she used them for, but do remember how well they turned out.


  2. Josefly | | #5

    I've seen buttons covered in silk, where the base was actually a regular button, like a shirt button. It appeared to me that a round of silk (twice the diameter of the button plus a little extra for the thickness of the button) was laid over the top of the button, a small gathering stitch done around the outside edge of the round, and drawn up on the back side of the button, something like a fabric yo-yo is done only in miniature. This could be done with two different sizes of button, then one put on top of the other and both sewn on right through the covering fabric through the holes in the buttons. I don't think a thicker fabric would work like this, but other thin fabrics than silk might work.It would be tedious, and I would only want to do it for a project that required very few buttons!It's disappointing that it's difficult to find much variety in covered-button kits. I went searching for a belt buckle to cover with fabric - another notion that used to be available in several different styles - and couldn't find anything at all. I needed to replace a destroyed buckle on a rtw dress belt. I asked at Mary Jo's Fabrics in NC, a store I would've thought would have almost anything, but they said their supplier had stopped producing them. Still, these items are available to garment manufacturers - why can't we get them too? Enough rant - sorry.

    Edited 3/16/2008 6:28 pm ET by Josefly

    1. emtharv | | #8

      Thank you so much for your response. I am thinking about trying a plastic washer for the outer ring and then putting a regular covered button for the center.
      As for the buckle issue that you have had... I know that old buckle and belt kits can still be found. I can always get my hands on them thru antique dealers and ebay. good luck and thank you again for your response.

      1. Josefly | | #10

        Thanks for the tip about the buckles. I've never done ebay; I'll have to try it.

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