Saturday, September 1, 2012

Button, button...she's got the buttons!

While not yet in need of a 12-step program, I do have a certain fondness for buttons, old, previously-used buttons in particular. Turns out my friend Cherie St. Cyr shares my predilection for vintage buttons.

My last visit with Cherie occurred this past February, while she was in the winter apartment she owns in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. This time we met up in Madison, Wisconsin, where she spends the rest of her year. Cherie is a textile artist currently focusing on art quilts, a massage therapist and tarot card reader.

Find out more here at her web site:

Beyond just chatting, I admit to an ulterior motive; I needed a tutorial on free motion sewing, with a hands on demonstration preferred. Her skillful instruction helped me generate this sunflower and cat thread sketch on a white fabric and batting sandwich.


The buttons in Cherie's basement studio are sorted into a variety of glass jars by color family.

In the past, she has revealed a particular fondness for red buttons, which may explain why they occupy the fanciest jar on the shelf.

If you have a button stash, the next time you look through it, check out how few of the buttons are green. Yellows are also less common, found more often an women's blouses and dresses.It must have taken a while to gather all these.

Blue buttons are found on both men's and women's garments and are a little easier to obtain.

These larger white carved buttons likely adorned a light colored sundress many decades ago, the plainer buttons something a bit more utilitarian. 

Button collections are a relic of a different era. Our grandmothers and sometimes mothers stockpiled such accumulations. Often stored in fancy tin, they amused many a child or grandchild in the sewing room. Button containers and jars belong to an era when clothing was repaired and when the garment was finally worn out, the buttons were cut off to be used to repair a different garment.

While sorting my own buttons by color will wait for another day, I thought Cherie has found a fabulous way to display these little treasures.



  1. Brings back fond memories of my mom's button jar.

  2. What a gorgeous collections, beautifully stored! I love the way they are kept in old jars, too.

  3. Hi Carina, searching for a way to contact you I came to your blog. Gorgeous buttons...I also love buttons and I have to get away from them in stores because I don't use them often and they attracted me so much that I buy them for no use.

    I am writing you because I saw your participation in Kelly Rae's blog on my Giveaway. I am offering short e-classes so you can check if the complete e-course is for you. Thanks for your participation...would be awesome if you can join the adventure in clay and mixed media. information is on my blog at the side bar buttons or for the complete e-course here:
    Elizabeth GLz