I have an adorable niece named Grace. She and her twin brothers, Seth and Ryan, have been helping me set up, work and tear down my show booth for several years now whenever I visit Arizona. They love to help me sort, package, count and label my stock. They each have their own button boxes which they made themselves and they have become button fanatics. I can't imagine why!?
When Grace decided that she would like to get serious about button collecting, at the ripe old age of 7, I started her with China buttons. Grace calls them "Chiiiiiiina Buttons" as if they were rubies. It brings tears to my eyes! She now has a lovely card of China buttons complete with identifying labels and she studies her copy of Warman's Buttons Field Guide diligently to be able to identify new buttons I send to her.
China buttons are a wonderful button for a beginning collector because they are plentiful, inexpensive (for the most part), and colorful. There are several body styles and types of China buttons, but the most popular seem to be "Calicoes" and "Stencil" patterns. There are over 326 Calico patterns (and that number grows as new specimens are discovered) and over 63 Stencil patterns catalogued. Both types came in several colors and sizes.I'd like to talk about China buttons this week in my blogs. What exactly is a China button? Where were they made and when? What kinds of Chinas are there? What are they worth today? Where can I find China buttons? In addition I'd like to share new finds and research that is being done today. Can you see why I'm so addicted? And this is just one type of button!!! Heaven help us!