Monday, September 12, 2011

T&T: Buttons

t and t tuesday

I used to dread sewing buttons on things. The button hole wasn’t my problem—my machine made that easy. Even making sure the button was sewn in the correct place wasn’t bad. But getting that button sewn securely to a piece of fabric? So not my favorite job. It seemed like I either didn’t sew it tight enough, or I had a hard time finding the holes when pushing my needle through from the back side, or I didn’t knot it well enough and you could just pull the button off. Oh, and it always seemed to take forever. But then I discovered something beautiful. Something that made me love sewing buttons. So I found reasons to sew them more and more! Like…

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Or this super cute little girl’s shirt I made for my Etsy shop. Or…

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Or the fabric envelopes I made the other day.
I’m loving sewing buttons because of my new favorite sewing machine foot (which is saying a lot considering how much I love my rolled hem foot and my ruffler foot).

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I’d like to introduce you to my button foot. It came with my sewing machine but I never took the time to find out what it was for. And then I was looking in my machine’s owner’s manual for something else and saw that one of the topics was sewing a button on. And then my life was changed (at least my sewing life. I supposed I don’t need to get that dramatic here.).

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It’s really simple—Just attach the button foot and lower the feed dogs. (You aren’t going to be moving the fabric along while sewing so you don’t need them moving.)
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Line your button up between the fabric and the foot. Make sure you have your fabric in the right spot. If you want the stitches to make an X, make sure the opposite holes are the ones the needle will line up with when going side to side.
button stitch

 My machine has a button stitch (as shown above), but the manual said that if your version doesn’t have it, simply select the zig zag stitch.

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I selected the stitch and then adjusted my stitch width to how wide my holes were. At this point, if you are just using a zig zag stitch, make sure you reduce your stitch length (on my machine, the top number) to zero or the lowest setting possible.

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Then you just push the pedal and fall in love.

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 I let it go for about 10 seconds. Again, I have to tell you this was just beautiful.

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Then raise your needle, pivot the button and repeat for the other two holes.

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After cutting your thread, on the under side of the fabric pull on the bobbin thread so it starts to pull the top thread back through.

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Use a pin to pull the thread through.

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Tie the two ends together.

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Trim your extra thread and admire.

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Isn’t it beautiful? I made several more fabric envelopes this afternoon and sewed all the buttons on so quickly! It went even faster than the button holes. So take a moment, look into your machine’s manual and see if you can do this too. If it doesn’t say anything, just find out if you can lower your feed dogs or not, and maybe you can find this foot to work for you as well!

Thanks for stopping by!

If you have a minute, check out some of the great parties I’ll be linking up with!


  1. Wow, Thanks! I seriously didn't know what that foot was for and have been ignoring it all this time, all the while sewing buttons by hand! AH

  2. After reading this post last night I went and inspected my machine to see if it had a button foot and to see if the feed dogs could be lowered. To my surprise I have the button foot and the feed dogs can be lowered! Now I just need to buy an instruction manual on how to use my machine. I can do basic sewing but I don't know how to use my machine to its full potential. I got it at a garage sale a few years ago and it didn't come with the manual.


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