By Susan | Comments: 4 | January 16, 2014

When we were little I remember spending hours sitting on the floor of my Grandmothers sewing room sorting out her tins of buttons.


Kept in old biscuit and sweets tins we couldn’t open the tight lids ourselves but Nan would open them and while she sewed, we sorted.

By size, by colour, by pattern, by type of button (shank, number of holes). Hours and hours and days and days of sorting buttons.

We could match them with the fabrics that were being sewn or help hunt for an extra one when an outfit required more buttons. I am sure the buttons were used to help keep us occupied and quiet while she sewed, but it left me with a sense that all the details in the sewing mattered.

I still love sorting through my buttons finding the right ones for the project at hand. In fact I think I might plan a few new projects that use buttons instead of zips.


  • Martine
    January 16, 2014

    They look like an excellent boiled lolly collection!
    Sadly, not edible…..
    Looking forward to seeing those on some of your new dresses soon
    (made from the stash of course)

    • Susan Goodwin
      January 17, 2014

      In the UK I came across a sweets company that would make edible button sweets! They had molded vintage buttons and were using those to create the sweets. It looked amazing!

  • Gabrielle
    January 16, 2014

    Gorgeous buttons – such lovely colors!

    • Susan Goodwin
      January 17, 2014

      Aren’t the twisted rope like ones just amazing? I keep imagining them on some big oversize coat or something equally dramatic?

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Hi, I'm Susan. A designer living in Sydney, Australia.

Here I share tales of my sewing, my pattern collection and insights into what it's like to work as a professional fashion designer.

Other recurring themes include cat photos and an ever changing hair style.



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