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Labeling Buttons

It's probably safe to say that your home has a jar or an envelope filled with the extra buttons that come with new clothes, but problems can arise when the time comes to determine which button matches which garment. Labeling the buttons for easy reference eliminates this problem. Most garment buttons are already packaged in small plastic bags or envelopes. Mark the buttons by inserting a tag describing the garment into the bag, using a self-adhesive label, or simply writing on the bag or envelope itself. You can also put loose buttons in clear plastic slide pages, with any information written directly on the pockets; then place the pages in a three-ring binder. This is also a good way to store the extra yarn that often comes with sweaters.

Comments (10)

  • LaurieKnits 14 Sep, 2011

    With a busy family, I came up with the idea of using a little storage box with small compartments (used for fishing tackle) to divide buttons by color groups- colors, brown, black, mother of pearl, white pearl shirt buttons, etc. Not only are replacements easy to find or match, but I also have an easy craft button box that is pre-sorted!

  • abiebaby47 15 Sep, 2010

    Really like Kittie1124's idea of sewing buttons into the garment.
    Men's shirts and trousers generally have extra buttons sewn inside; why don't women's clothing manufacturers do this as well?!

  • lindalalonde 13 Sep, 2010

    If the buttons or other extras don't come in their own bag, I use zip-closing bags meant for jewellery findings - you can get them in various sizes at craft stores. I punch a [filtered word] in one corner of the bag and put it on one of those large metal rings that closes like a 3-ring binder. I can easily flip through to find what I need and, when passing the garment on, I put a safety pin through one of the top buttonholes and attach the bag to it. Size and washing instructions can be kept the same way.

  • coba 12 Sep, 2010

    I wish I had sewn buttons into the hems of newly purchased outfits and also wish that all clothing manufactures would do this when possible. Since many clothes get donated I have hoards of buttons that remain here at home whereas if they had been sewn onto garments they would have been more useful to new owner.

  • writeaway 6 Sep, 2010

    Usually, when you buy a garment, the color and sometimes a description is on the sales tag. I just cut off the part that describes the garment and stick it into the tiny plastic bag that comes attached to the garment and throw it into my button box. When we lost our home to Hurricane Katrina, an anonymous donor sent what looked like her grandmother's sewing kit with buttons inside. What a treasure!.

  • GabbyCal 6 Sep, 2010

    My 96-year-old mother has been sewing the extra buttons into the hem or seam of garments forever. I'm not so organized or patient, so the button box works for me. I keep a pretty tin box (and a small pair of scissors nearby) right in the closet so I have no excuse for not keeping all those buttons in one place where I can find them.

  • grammababy 1 Jun, 2008

    Have been writing on the hanging paper tag garment label exact color, garment type, mfger, etc and slide right into plastic bag with buttons for years. Really like notebook and sorted, plastic sleeves idea. Grammababy

  • Anna_Marie 1 Jun, 2008

    Hey...what a GREAT idea, "kiltie"! I like your solution best.

  • kiltie1124 1 Jun, 2008

    Having all those buttons in one place is nice, but I just sew the "extras" into the inside hem of the garment they go to. That way, they are there when I need them!

  • frenchmom 1 Jun, 2008

    great idea. Of course, if you use a nice box matching your interior or an antique wooden box, you can leave it around. If you find an old jewel case, you can put the buttons and yarns on the bottom and sewing helps on the upper tray.