Buttons!

I’m trying to blame the wonderful Clara Vulliamy for my button obsession, which is not entirely fair, as I’ve only been talking to her for a couple of months and this was the state of the button collection before she reminded me of my button obsession:

I forget who it was but someone in my childhood had a button tin. An old biscuit tin that was filled with buttons. These were all buttons that had probably been saved from old clothes over many years, unlike the purpose bought buttons in my collection, but I loved looking through that tin. There were always different things to find each time, it was a mini Aladdin’s cave of discoveries.

The memories of this have never left me so having a collection of buttons seemed an essential thing to have available to my daughters. I used to save all the spare buttons from my clothes from years before I even thought of having children to be honest, a collection of buttons is just in my psyche.

I may have ‘accidentally’ purchased one or two (or seven) hundred more recently… Yes, I’m not sure how it was accidental either!

With the lovely new buttons, I thought they ought to be organised more so sorted most of them by colour:

And then others by shape, material and patterns:

Now there isn’t that huge box for my girls to discover new things each time. Or to use as pretend food in imaginative play. But I like them organised. Ho hum. I can’t see the buttons remaining organised for long, and until then they’ve still got the messy box of ribbons:

I really ought to do something crafty with my girls and all these bits and pieces! Fortunately there’s lots of inspiration on Clara’s website. And lots of buttons. And lots of felt. And…

8 responses to “Buttons!

  1. Every home needs a button tin! We have quite a nice little button dept in a shop near us, so most weeks there is a short trip to choose a button after school. And there’s a junk shop near my parents where the 1st thing I look for is always old tins of buttons…. I think I need to acknowledge my habit!

    • I didn’t realise we had so many until it was pointed out 😉 I’d been looking in charity shops for tins/bottles of buttons on and off for years but never found any – except once, and I always regret not buying it!

  2. I am ALL SMILES this morning reading this, Anne-Marie! I know when I have been outclassed and bow to the new Queen of Buttons!
    Your colour and shape sorted button collection has got me nose-pressed to the screen: we need to have a very long conversation about where you found EACH ONE. A sort of train-spotters convention for button-lovers: my idea of heaven, lots of other people’s idea of tedium I’ve no doubt. I’m glad Zoe is stepping up to acknowledge her habit…
    And thank you for linking back to me – it was really kind.
    Have you come across Koumpounophobia?? So strange. How they would NOT LIKE our sites!

    • Never! You will always be Queen of Buttons! I have a lovely local haberdashery (I think that’s the word) shop nearby which is nice to browse their huge collection to choose one or two from, then I looked on Etsy (inspired by you) and found here: http://www.lovepaperfish.com/ and indulged in lots of spots and stripes!

      I wanted to be clever and call this post “Koumopounophilia” but on looking the meaning up, it was a bit more love than I intended so I didn’t 🙂

  3. OMG you have just taken me back about thirty years! My great aunt had a tin if buttons and I too loved it! My mum has one now too although she won’t let the children near it! You do have a very brilliant collection!

    • A ‘proper’ tin of buttons would be lovely. Most of these have been bought to go in the button box rather than thrifted from old clothes like they used to be… It’s a lovely memory to have I think!

  4. I just read a book with my kids called A String of Beads. It’s about beads not buttons, but it totally reminds me of how you describe your button collection. You should read it with your daughters sometime:)

  5. My Granny used to have a button tin and my Mum has one now and they both had the same, weird, old buttons smell 😀
    You should have a button folder on Pinterest so I can gaze lovingly at yours and not have to rush out to start my own collection x

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