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Monday
Feb042008

Molly's Sketchbook: Embroidered Covered Buttons

Buttons
Since Purl Patchwork opened I have deepened my love of embroidery. I own almost every Valdani's embroidery thread color in existence. I like seeing how small my stitches can be and embroidering tiny things. As my skills were improving I started thinking of different ways to use embroidery and I came up with these embroidered covered buttons.

I thought making covered buttons would be an involved process until I heard about covered button kits. They make  covering a button really really easy. Once I got the kits I was on a roll and I made over 150 buttons! -Molly

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The Materials

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Prepping the Fabric

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The back of the Cover Button Kit has a template outline printed on it. Cut it out carefully.

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Trace the template 6- 10 times on to your fabric, at least 3" from the fabric's edges.   I like to prepare for more buttons than I'm actually making so I have room to mess up.

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Center the button shell in each circle and trace around it. This will be your embroidery area. (As a side note, can you find me in the above picture?)

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And now draw your design inside of each inner circle. I drew little flowers but you could do whatever you like: initials, animals, fruits, hearts, stars... anything you can fit into a 5/8" space.

Embroidering

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Center the circles in your embroidery hoop and pull the fabric tight like a drum.

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Thread your embroidery needle with an 18" length of embroidery thread. You do not want to add any bulk behind the embroidery so just tie the simplest of knots at the end of the thread.

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Now, using a simple back stitch, embroider the flowers. If you are new to embroidery check out our Embroidery Tutorial.

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After the embroidery is done pull your thread through your work on the back and snip the thread. There is no need to tie a knot.

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One you have six embroideries that you're happy with you'll be ready for the next step.

Cutting the Fabric

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Cut out the circles from the fabric. Spray these little medallions with water. The blue lines will magically disappear. 

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Iron them to dry them out.

Assemble the Buttons

To assemble the buttons follow the illustrations below:

Above:

  • Pusher
  • Back
  • Mold
  • Button Shell
  • Fabric  

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Center the Fabric on top of the Button Shell

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Stuff the Button Shell and Fabric (embroidery side down) into the Mold together.

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Tuck the Fabric's edges neatly inside of the Button Shell

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Place the Back squarely inside of the Mold

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And then place the Pusher on top of the whole thing

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Push the Pusher down firmly. Try to apply pressure evenly. You should hear a little pop when the whole thing comes together.

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Pull the finished button out of the Mold. Here is a picture of what the back should look like:
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Repeat six times and you'll have six beautiful handmade buttons!
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Reader Comments (21)

such tiny little beauties!
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterlucy
You guys are right on top of my interests, I tell ya. A couple of weeks ago it was Sashiko and now this. Thank you!
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJen (from sewandsox)
I love these!
There was an embroidered button swap in blogland a while ago. See some photos here: http://www.flickr.com/groups/575221@N22/
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commenteranina
Whoa, as a Valdani junkie myself, I am fascinated by your lovely lovely buttons.
Chic, branches (accent aigue over the "e"), a (accent grave) la page!
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKathy Merrick
Those are adorable! Your journal makes them look easy... and the results are so rewarding.
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterTerri W
From your beautiful main page to everything I read -- you are definitely my favorite blog and I always enjoy seeing you show up as something new on my Blog Reader! Kudos to you!!! Pamie G.
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterPamie G.
I especially love the blue flowers. Such teeny-tiny beauties!
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterJust Pure Lovely
Adorable!! I love covered buttons too -- they look so fancy but are so easy!
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAmy Hodge
these are so cute! i just came across another site that showed covered buttons as hair pins and was thinking i couldn't wait to try making them!
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commenternatalie
150 buttons is a little insane, but they are really lovely. The acorn and what I like to think of the forget-me-nots are among my favorites. It would be fun to see how you have used them.
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAvice
I LOVE these. I'm an embroidery addict myself. I'm going to try this one for sure!
February 4, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAshley
They're so cute !
I love the blue flowers on a red background !
Thanks for the inspiration,

February 4, 2008 | Unregistered Commentermycraftyways
These are adorable! What a great idea.
February 5, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterlinda lu
OH, SO CUTE and how clever to do all the embroidery at the same time ...I guess one at a time would be pretty crazy wouldn't it?
February 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterBetty
these are gorgeous!! i LOVE covering buttons, now i'm going to have to try this...

meredith @bittycakes
http://bittycakes.wordpress.com
February 5, 2008 | Unregistered Commentermeredith
I love them. I bought a blouse a few months ago just because I thought it was simple enough to showcase some embroidered covered buttons. Now I need to get moving on them!
February 5, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterWendy
These are great! I love the texture of hand embroidery and have been doing a bunch myself. Thanks for continuing to bring such great products and ideas out! This blog and shop is very inspiring.
February 6, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterEllie
Lovely, lovely, lovely! Those buttons are bound to spruce up more of your beautiful creations. I linked to your luxurious wool blanket in my latest post. Thank you so much for your thorough tutorial. It made for a wonderful project.
February 6, 2008 | Unregistered Commentermolly
So cute. Great idea. Love your blog!
February 12, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterKristin Nichola
I was just thinking of making these myself, using some of the vintage embroidered linens that I collect. Most of the pieces are stained, so I don't mind cutting them up! Thanks for your inspiration!
February 18, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterkatie trott
How cute!!! The embroidery looks like frosting on some of the pictures. Love!
September 20, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLily

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