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What Are the Best Tips for Making DIY Buttons?

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  • Written By: Tara Barnett
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 17 September 2016
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DIY buttons can be used for many different types of projects, such as magnets, jewelry, or apparel. There are many different ways to make buttons at home using basic craft tools as well as special button making kits. One of the major differences between types of DIY buttons is how the buttons are meant to attach to textiles or other materials. Many strategies for making DIY buttons involve making holes in button-sized materials, but some involve attaching pins or other items to the backs of button-sized items. Almost any type of object can become a button with a little creativity, yielding highly unique finished products.

One of the easiest ways to make DIY buttons is to drill holes in a flat, button-shaped object like wood. This works well with glass as well, although precautions must be taken to ensure that the glass does not break. Drilling holes to make buttons works well if the items are relatively flat, but it is important to smooth out any rough edges left from cutting as well. Edges on the inside of the buttonholes may break thread if left unfinished. Similarly, shrinking materials can be used to make button shapes that will become thicker and smaller when baked, bearing any design they held before baking.

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Another easy way to make DIY buttons is to cover simple button bases with custom fabric. There are many kits for making this type of button, many of which are adjustable for making buttons of different sizes. When making buttons of this type, the best tip to keep in mind is that a neat edge is the key to a professional look. Using a simple machine to make this type of button can help in this task, but caution must be exercised when wrapping button bases by hand.

Some people make buttons that attach to clothing or other textiles using latching pins. This type of button, also called a pin, can be made with a special button-making machine or entirely by hand. When making pins by hand, affixing the pin base to the decorative element may require glue or drilling. Depending on the type of button and its weight, different types of pin bases may be appropriate.

It is fairly easy to find tips for making buttons in traditional designs, but making unique and three-dimensional buttons can also be fun. Small toys can become unique buttons in creative hands, as can any item through which holes can be drilled. When making DIY buttons of this type, practice and experimentation are key. Making unique buttons may result in some items that do not turn out well, but those that do will often be highly interesting pieces of art.

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