Sunday, May 23, 2010

Wooden Button Love 2!

Although short on time, I finished a few buttons yesterday.  I used a branch that had fallen from a neighborhood tree during a winter storm.

As mentioned in the Esprit Cabine tutorial, I highly recommend the use of a miter box when sawing the branch - it really helped to keep my cuts straight and clean!  Next time around, I might even try cutting on a 45 degree angle.

Although I love the bark edging on whippoorwheel's wonderful persimmon buttons, my branch was very dry and the bark chipped off during the sawing process (which is okay, too!).

My button pieces didn't look very impressive after I'd first cut them, but a little hand sanding revealed the natural beauty of the wood.  I varied from the tutorial and sanded the front, back and side surfaces.  Here are my sanded pieces on a dew-dressed collard leaf:

Lastly, I brought them indoors, clamped each piece to a bench pin and used my Dremel to drill the button holes.  As you can see in this final photograph, I can use a lot more practice here!  I could also use a tinier drill bit for the small buttons.

I've definitely been inspired to try more of these buttons.  My husband suggested carving a few into heart shapes, which could be really cute!

I'd also like to finish these buttons with oil or wood stain, or even experiment with my wood-burner tool for more intricate designs.  I'm already envisioning little wood beads, too.  Oh, the possibilities!


  1. These are so pretty. I think they'd look lovely on a sweater.

    I found your blog when I left a comment on Barbra's.


  2. Nicely done! It's totally a learning process working with wood... especially found wood. I think you did a great job. When we were younger we used to make buckets of these kinds of buttons. I remember how my hands used to hurt like crazy after making them. Nowadays we have access to power tools and whipping up a batch is fairly easy and less painful! You might try wet sanding some of them for a different finish.

  3. What a great idea, Andrew! I'll definitely try wet sanding! That sounds exciting. Thank you so much for the tip!

    Sherry, a sweater was exactly what I first had in mind! (Great minds think alike, as they say!) I have a sweet, slip-stitched beige sweater that's been pleading for a nice wooden button! Perhaps even a toggle-type button. :)

    Thank you both so much for your comments! I really love to hear your thoughts!

    I'm looking forward to lots of button-making fun! As you can see, I can certainly use the practice! *LOL*

    BTW, I apologize for the grainy photo! I finished the buttons in the evening, so the shot is a bit dark. Sorry about that!


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