Did you know I collect buttons? I have several large old Ball glass jars full of them. Whether I'm just across town at the local fabric shop or traveling away from home, I always seem to find a new tiny treasure.
Years ago when I was a graduate student I visited Tender Buttons in Chicago (which I understand is now closed). I was amazed that an entire shop could just sell buttons. This was in my pre-beading days, so I didn't have any idea what to do with them. I just through they were cool and I bought a handful, as did the student I dragged with me on that trip.
Even as a child I was playing with buttons. I won a prize (at some kind of fair) for one of my childhood button creations: I drew pictures on felt and then sewed the buttons on to decorate them, and put the felt pages into a 3-ring binder. One of the few designs I remember from that project was a Christmas tree—I sewed different fancy buttons on as ornaments. That to me seemed like the ultimate way to decorate.
Pictured here: A few buttons in my collection.
Given my fascination with buttons, I thought it would be fun to host a button swap (my very first time hosting a swap!) and find a few other like-minded souls.
1. Sign up by March 1, 2011 by posting a comment to this original post at michellemach.com/blog (not on creatingthehive, Facebook, or somewhere else). When you fill out the comment form, make sure you include your email address and your blog address. (Your email address will not be made public—it's just for me and your swap partner.) I'll email you a confirmation that I've received your info. If you haven't heard from me in a couple of days, feel free to email me (address is on my contact page).
2. I'll pair people together and send out the partners no later than March 6.
3. Choose three buttons for your partner. (You may want to email each other and see what kinds of buttons, colors, or shapes he or she would enjoy.) The buttons can be any size, shape, or material. They can have a shank on the back or be the kind with holes in the middle. The can be identical, related (similar or complementary), or completely unrelated.
I'd like to encourage you to choose at least one button that is somehow special—handmade by you or another artist, vintage, sentimental (a button with a story behind it), or otherwise unique. A button does not have to be expensive to be special. Maybe you have a button saved from a special garment or one purchased on a memorable trip that you'd like to swap. Or maybe you've embellished a regular shirt button in a new and unique way. I'll be posting some ideas for making buttons and places to buy some cool artist-made buttons.
4. Send 3 buttons to your partner by March 29. You can blog about the buttons you sent/received. It's optional (but nice).
5. Make at least one project with at least one of your button(s). Your project does not need to be jewelry—feel free to make other accessories, clothing, home decor, or anything else you can think of.
6. Blog about your project and include links to all the other people in the button swap on the reveal day April 21, 2011. (I'll send out more information about the links when it gets closer to the reveal day.)
How does that sound? Are you in?
Help Me Spread the Word
I've made some buttons (the other kind) for you to use on your blogs if you choose:
You can copy and paste these buttons for your blog and link them here:
(This is a shorter address that will redirect people to this blog post.)
If you have any questions, feel free to post them. I hope to hear from some of you soon!