Friday, June 28, 2013

For The Love of a Button

      - Enamel Art
     Buttons.  Say it with me, "Buttons".  Are you smiling?  I'm certain that you are!
     Lately, however, I find myself screaming at my computer screen when I look at buttons.  There are people out there who want you to think they know about buttons, when, in fact, they are mistaken (yes, I think that's the politically correct way to say it).  I am on a mission to teach you how to spot these errors, so that we stop passing on bad information.  Let me give you a couple examples.
     I am always searching for buttons and button craft on the Internet.  My latest addiction is Pinterest.  Now, I have seen some gorgeous buttons there and I am always glad to see so many people have Boards where they collect buttons!  What breaks my heart is when the description of a button is incorrect or misleading.  Words like, "Antique", "Rare", "Vintage", or even all 3 together to describe a button, makes my skin crawl!  Here is one I found:

"A mixed lot of 14 small vintage buttons. All are in time worn, rusty patina. These jewel like buttons are great for your jewelry making, altered art, altered couture, mix media art, Steampunk, collage or any creative craft projects. It's great to have them around in your studio. They will inspire you...or they can make your inspiration take fly. "
      14 vintage metal buttons

     Sounds enticing!  I tried to see how much this seller wanted for these buttons, but, to my horror, they had SOLD!  The description says, "...time worn, rusty patina".  It should say, ..."disintegrating, rusty and moldy"!  These are buttons that I would NEVER touch or put in with my other buttons, because these buttons are SICK and they WILL infect your other buttons with their mold spores.  In short, these buttons should be trashed.  Sad? Yes, of course!  Had these buttons been properly stored, they might have been spared this deplorable fate.
     Now, the disclaimer: I am not doing this to call people out, point fingers or malign anyone.  The market lives by the rule, "buyer beware".  THAT is why I am writing this series: To give you the tools to make educated purchases and shares.  I saw this picture on several other Pintrest boards, so the misinformation is being spread like the mold spores on the buttons!
     OK, it has begun.  I am going to teach you about buttons from the ground up and you will be ambassadors for buttons, or as I like to call myself, a buttonologist!
     Time is a precious commodity.  I promise to keep these posts brief, so that you can learn a little each day and not be overwhelmed.  Ask questions, comment, let me know what you are thinking.  Above all, Button Up!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Buttonology 101

     I am "The Button Lady".  I collect buttons.  I teach others about buttons.  I have written two books about buttons.  My goal is to make button education accessible to everyone.  I feel I am failing.
Today I embark on a mission to continue what I started with my books and lectures.  I will write about buttons, chapter by chapter.  I will not shy away from controversy.  I'm calling it like I see it, because you all deserve to know.

     I am so excited about this endeavor that I may wander from my path from time to time.  I must be patient and start at the beginning, or risk having my message lost.  I welcome your questions and thoughts.  Ask anything, say things pertinent to the subject.  Open your eyes and your minds.  Learn something new.
     Learning.  We learn something new everyday, it is said.  What do you, and I, do with this learning?  It is our responsibility to share what we know with others.  Do not keep your "light under a bushel".  I am asking all of you to share my blog messages on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, and the like, so that everyone will have access and learn about buttons.

     "Really, Jill, " you say, "Buttons?"  I know you are thinking this because I though it as well. I see the same look on the faces of others that I had when I saw a flyer for a State Button Society Show.  I went to the show, thinking it would be "fun".  I left the show, knowing it had changed my life.  I was entrusted with knowledge and a mission and I have embraced it; writing books, articles and speaking to groups.  It needs to grow larger, and I need your help.  As I post chapters here on my blog, I am asking that you share them with others, and encourage them to do the same.  It is my hope that you will be ambassadors for me when you see what I am seeing on the Internet, eBay, Pinterest and at flea markets.
Look for my first installment tomorrow and you will see why I am so passionate about this.
Button Blessings to you all,