Stringing buttons in chains

This week I had visitors in my studio…Katie (“I’m 5.” “No, you’re 4 and a half.”) and her younger sister Isabelle. Looking around my stash to find playthings, my eyes landed on my sorted buttons. I dumped the bags of blue and brown buttons into one bin, and immediately Katie said, “Why are you doing that?”

“To keep you occupied” didn’t seem like the right answer, so I told her I was planning a project that needed blue and brown buttons, and would she please pick out the good ones for me. Katie was soon busy examining the details in the buttons and bringing me the best buttons, one by one.

After they left, I couldn’t bring myself to put those buttons away without making something:

Some of the “good buttons” Katie selected from my stash, and a few strung with beads

I was surprised by how much I liked the blues and brown/tans together. I decided to string them with seed beads, using a beading needle and Nymo thread. Some of buttons are strung vertically so their holes are in the same direction as the bead holes. The larger buttons are strung laterally, with a loop of seedbeads in each button hole.

I like how light this chain is – the buttons are lightweight, and I’m only adding one glass accent bead every so often, to keep the weight down. There are no closures on the strand yet…I’m thinking of making several related strands and then maybe connecting them. Here’s the first button strand with the first coordinating strand:

Keeping each strand light, I hope to create several more coordinating strands and then wrap them together.

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