Vintage Thingies Thursday and Blogtoberfest day 16…

Well I now have a whopping 60 entrants in my vintage button giveaway! If you haven’t yet entered see my earlier post and leave a comment there. I will draw the winners this Saturday evening, 18th.

Last week for VTT I showed a group of mixed vintage buttons.

Here’s a refresher:

These generated a bit of interest, so I thought I would look at some in a bit more detail. I’ve been collecting lots of beautiful examples of textile and handmade lace buttons. It’s a passion of mine to put together a collection to donate to the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney as a tribute to women and the ‘gentle arts’.

You may have seen these sorts of things hiding at the bottom of the button box:


They’re moulds for making Victorian woven buttons. The example below is called a Victorian flag and has the finest silk thread wound around the mould, which is then worked over in needle-made lace.


The bone rings in this picture were used in many cottage industries for making crocheted buttons, such as those on the card of old buttons below. 



I found this wonderful book by Nancy Nehring called 50 Heirloom Buttons to make. It has great projects on needlelace, crochet, braided, ribbon and covered buttons. I bought it through Amazon:

you can see where the bone rings were used in these gorgeous yellow crocheted buttons.

These are a few of my beautiful antique crocheted buttons with beaded glass centres. The large one shows how silk thread was wound around the mould.

This antique toggle button is crocheted onto a press stud – ingenious!! It still has the old celluloid chain attached.

These are underwear buttons and are made of china.

This button is actually made out of braided hair! During the Victorian era such keepsakes were made from the locks of a loved one. It’s the only hair button that I’ve managed to find!

For more Vintage Thingies Thursday fun visit the Apron Queen!


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17 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. oooh I love the crochet ones 🙂

  2. Ohhhh this is so cool. It is so neat to see the
    buttons up close, love the details! I can see where
    the bone ring was used. Great buttons and post!
    I am amazed at the time taken in making old buttons.

  3. Well you really had me at the crocheted button part, but I’ve definitely NEVER seen a hair button before! Wow. You have an amazing collection.

  4. WOW…that was fantastic, Liz! Your buttons and related treasures are simply superb. My fav are those three crocheted buttons on the card and I’ve gotta have that book!! 🙂

  5. These are so neat. Love the crochet buttons. I just love old buttons, you have some really great ones.

  6. Anything crochet is simply beautiful!!

  7. The crochet buttons are gorgeous. I’ll pass on the one made with hair! 🙂

  8. Lovely treasures! My MIL used to crochet or sew buttons for gardigans she had knitted, she had many different patterns.

  9. Wow, that’s the most educational thing I’ve ever seen about buttons–thanks!

  10. Those are really fantastic, especially the human hair one. What a great collection!

  11. I love the braided hair button. I’m a sucker for anything Victorian.
    You have a great collection.

  12. The crochet yellow buttons are yummy! The braided hair button…yummy is probably not the right adjective. But it’s still an awesome find.

  13. Thanks for a great post! I admit I have wondered what these are, and assumed they are not buttons and (gulp) thrown them away… Oooh, feel bad now! Love your blog, are you coming to the Canberra Vintage Clothing Fair in Nov? j

  14. Wow!

  15. What a fascinating collection of buttons you have…thanks for sharing!

  16. What an interesting post. I am facinated with the crochet buttons having finished my latest crochet project I just mused as to what my next project would be. Maybe I should give buttons a go! I love the little press stud number!

  17. i can’t decide which i find more odd. A button made from someone else’s hair – or UNDERWEAR buttons. Wouldn’t they be uncomfortable?

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