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What’s in a Button?

March 12, 2013

IMG_1397¬†When I finish a cardigan or buttony cowl (or anything that needs a button really) I can’t wait to head downtown and pick out my buttons.

Will I choose something simple and make the knitting the star? Or maybe something that boldly stands out to have the knitting showcase a fabulous button. A button can change the whole feel of a sweater or scarf, transforming it into something new! Vancouver Knitters are just so lucky to have a cute little shop just for their buttony needs. Button Button is the place to be for buttons in Vancouver.

Having recently finished a few items in need of buttons I sent Hunter out with Grandpa and Jones and I headed down to Button Button. Toddlers, babies, and scores of buttons don’t mix well so it had been a while since I had the pleasure of visiting Button Button. It was just as I remembered, but with even more buttons!Looking around the room at all the tubes, bowls, drawers, divided trays, and buckets full to the brim with buttons I was so excited to find the perfect ones for my sweaters….and probably a few more for the button stash.

Button Button

I laid out the 2 cardigans I was picking buttons for and started my search. Soon I had Colleen, owner and expert button curator, making suggestions and searching for the right number of buttons. I don’t know if she ever takes a day off but she has been in the shop every time I’ve been there, always eager to pull that perfect button from way in the back or hidden in a drawer, or really right out in the open. It’s amazing how a button can transform a knit!


Take the Antler Cardigan for example. Knit in a neutral ecru with matching antler buttons it’s an earthy and timeless sweater. Choose a bold orangey red and some bright white buttons and you’ve got something a little less sophisticated but a lot more fun. Lastly I knit the tiny little Antler sweater below for Jones and the mismatching buttons add a touch of whimsy to an otherwise simple cardigan. What’s in a button you ask? Sometimes it’s everything!


I also increased the button stash by a few while I was there. A few fabric covered buttons, some wood, and a magnificent little $2 bag of colorful buttons, just the sort of thing for a rainy button day. Do you have a button stash? Tell us all about it!

More Buttony Knits:

Antler CardiganFalse Creek Button ScarfMarshmallow Mitts

13 Comments leave one →
  1. March 18, 2013 7:45 am

    Occasionally I come across jars of buttons at the thrift store or estate sales and will buy them and spend the afternoon sorting through them. I love that someone saved these little treasures. Some are tied together on a thread after being carefully cut off a shirt going into the rag bin. Some are old worn shells that remind me of my children’s first teeth. I love adding them to the toys I knit for charity.
    My mom had a tin of buttons that she allowed us to play with when we were children and I always had a jar filled with many colored buttons for my kids. I guess I am still a kid at heart.

  2. March 12, 2013 9:31 pm

    Yes, I have a button stash, I have an entire bag of carved coconut buttons I bought for a song and two local stores that sell/recycle vintage buttons. My most recent purchase was a set of six mother of pearl buttons for $2.00.

  3. March 12, 2013 7:39 pm

    I simply adore buttons, especially vintage ones!

  4. March 12, 2013 3:57 pm

    Yes I have a button stash…but my favorite button stash was my Moms…she kept hers in a large tin that was bright blue with pictures of sunflowers. I would take the tin out and play with the buttons..let them fall through my hands…pick out ones to use for the doll clothes I made out of old socks…sort them….I spent hours with that button tin…

    • March 12, 2013 4:35 pm

      I bought the $2 bag of buttons for Hunter to play with in the same way, but then I realized she would leave them around for Jones to eat so they will have to wait a bit! Thanks for sharing such a lovely story.

  5. March 12, 2013 2:03 pm

    I am so jealous that you have a whole store for buttons!
    I do have a button stash, mostly from estate sales and a few ebay lots. Somehow my mom sewed for 50 years and never accumulated buttons.

  6. miss agnes permalink
    March 12, 2013 1:23 pm

    Funny that your post today is about buttons when I need to find four brick colored buttons for a nice baby jacket I’m currently working on.
    Now you made me think of maybe looking at other colors,or even better search in mynhuge mismatched button stash. I inherited my grandmother’s sewing box which contained an assortment of old unused buttons, to which I’ve consistently added spare buttons or lost buttons from every piece of clothing I buy. So now I have a great collection but most are, alas, unispiring.
    I libe in Montreal – anyone knowing a great button place here?


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