Yarn Button

yarn button
Today I learned how to make a yarn button.

My fiber arts guild meets monthly, and we’ve begun having a program at the end of every meeting. Members can choose to stay for the program or not. For me, it depends on both the topic and other demands on my time.

Today’s program was how to make these cool buttons, so I stayed. It was a little time consuming, but not difficult. I’m sure once you got in the groove with it, you could knock out a six or eight buttons while you were watching a movie.

We started by making a template from the lid of a yogurt container (or similar). Then wind the yarn in a particular pattern to form the ‘spokes’ – the ridged sections. Next do a form of twining — weaving the yarn around those spokes, creating something that looked sort of like a stylized star.

Remove the finished star from the template. At this point it looks more like a daisy. Make a running stitch with the yarn round the outer loops of that daisy. Now hold a button of the correct size (smaller than the daisy, but not too small) on the underside of the daisy, and pull the yarn to gather the daisy on the back side. If you’ve ever made cloth “pennies” for quilting or applique, the process is similar. The button on the inside of your yarn button can be old & ugly – it’s there simply to provide stability to your yarn button. You can use a button with holes or a shank button, as you choose.

Voila, the result is a lovely button made of yarn, with a rather sea urchin-like structure and appearance. Your button can be large or small, thick and puffy or quite flat. It all depends on the size of your template, the size of your yarn, and how you choose to gather and/or stuff the button.

My button isn’t perfect, but I’m perfectly happy with it for a first attempt. Since I don’t knit sweaters or other things that use buttons, I’m not sure how often I’ll use them, but I know they’d work well on my handwoven wrist warmers. I can also see them, without an actual button inside, used to decorate a woven scarf.

If you’re interested, let me know and I can make another button step by step, photographing each step and post the complete instructions.

7 comments to Yarn Button

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