The difference between shank buttons and other buttons is that other buttons have two or four visible holes in them whereas the shank button has the hole hidden underneath, in the shank. Although regular buttons can be used to make all sorts of cool things, and can even be used as embellishments for various projects, the shank button is a more elegant choice for some projects. If you love making floral crafts and decor projects you’ll appreciate the shank button. You can use it to make a gorgeous flower that can accompany others in a vase or be used as an accent on a different project.
There are literally millions of button designs that have created over the years. Most any shank button – within reason – can become a new flower. Look through the buttons you have and choose any color combinations you want. Buttons with fake diamonds around them, ones that look like pearls, as well as ones with pastel colors like purple, yellow or pink are perfect. Select buttons that are huge, ones that are much smaller and even ones that are really tiny. That way, you’ll create a gorgeous vase full of assorted button flowers rather than ones that all look alike. Every button doesn’t have to be different, though; use three or four of one type, two of another, and so on.
You’ll need artificial leaves to complete the button flowers. You’ll find many different types at your nearest craft store. Think about the sizes of the buttons as you choose the leaves. You can even take the buttons along with you so you can find leaves which are proportionate with the particular buttons you’ve chosen. Obviously, you’ll need larger leaves for big buttons and smaller leaves for little buttons. However, you can choose the shapes of the leaves, colors and other options. It’s often cheaper and less wasteful to purchase a garland of leaves than it is to buy a giant bag of artificial leaves. However, with garlands the leaves are generally all the same size and color whereas bags of leaves sometimes feature assorted sizes, shapes and colors.
Hot glue can help you quickly attach the leaves to the buttons. Turn the button over to expose the shank. Apply a little glue onto the edge of the leave then position it next to the shank. Make sure that you do not cover the hole of the shank. The hole will be used later to secure the flower to the project you’re doing. You’ll decide how many leaves you want to add to each button; two, three, four – it’s up to you. Add the leaves to each button then set them aside until you’re ready to assemble the project you’ve chosen to do.
To make flowers in a vase place a piece of Styrofoam in the vase. Take a length of wire (even a pipe cleaner), and thread it through the hole of the shank. Bring the ends of the wire together and push them into the Styrofoam. Do the same to the other button flowers but cut the wire in various lengths. That way, the flowers will stand at different levels rather than all of them being the same height. In addition to placing the button flowers in the Styrofoam you can add individual leaves, reeds, vines and similar greenery.
Make slightly different flowers by creating a cluster of small shank buttons. To do a cluster of three, for instance, place the wire inside the hole of each button. Bring all six ends of wire together. Now take one small piece of wire and wrap it around the other wires, just below the three buttons. Tightly wrap then glue on the leaves. Glue the leaves around the three buttons as if they were one. These cluster flowers are really cute if you use small buttons which are identical.
There are lots of different ways to use the finished button flowers. Wire them onto wreaths or onto curtain tie-backs. Wire them onto metal picture frames or assorted baskets. Glue them directly onto purses or other accessories. If the shank is in the way take a pair of wire cutters and you can easily snap the shank off. Even with the shank removed you can still glue on leaves to complete the desired flower. With the shank removed the button flowers can be glued to lampshades, shirts (use fabric glue), hampers, picture frames, mirrors, belts and much, much more.
A bucket of buttons might not be all that impressive when first given to you, but after you’ve made a button flower, you’ll be thrilled to have even more buttons from which to choose. You’ll soon be making all sorts of floral decor pieces for your home – and they’ll be unlike any floral pieces others have in their homes! Your one-of-a-kind button flowers will steal the show when visitors come by so you’d better get busy! You know you have company coming over this weekend!