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!


  1. Hi Jill just found this site and love it. I also try my best to describe my buttons through research. I saw these and I have also seen so many but many places like Etsy make it difficult to distinguish between antique and vintage the way they set up your selections. I have also seen many buttons go for outlandish prices and they are disintegrating due to improper storage especially the types like Marion Weeber celluloids with the crackling going through the balls etc. They list them as in good condition and in fact they are what I call "dead buttons" and need to be removed from the other buttons.

  2. I look forward to learning what you have to share with us. Thank you for being willing to share what you know so willingly!

    Jolene Murphy