Sunday, December 04, 2005

 

Button storage


Link


On another site where I tend to lurk,the discussion on the storage of buttons came up,and I thought you may be interested to read what others say and do!



On Behalf Of Ola Mallard
Subject: Re: [CQembellishers] storing buttons


Please remember to separate buttons by materials - metal shouldn't be
stored
with plastic etc. Unless you don't mind that they will deteriote.
Especially
antique buttons. The newer "metals" are mainly metallized plastic.

On behalf of Katherine Smith:
RE: storing buttons

I'm glad Ola brought up the very important tip that buttons should be
separated by the type of material they are. Here are some of my
experiences/tips:

Metal buttons (REAL metal) mixed with celluloid or Bakelite buttons
will
cause the bakelites and celluloids to disintegrate and the metal
buttons to
tarnish - sometimes beyond salvation.

Bakelite buttons stored with plastic buttons will cause the Bakelite
buttons
to disintegrate or "rot".

UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES DO I PUT ANYTHING (OTHER THAN GLASS BUTTONS AND
PEARL
BUTTONS) IN ANYTHING OTHER THAN A GLASS JAR. While my mother used a
button
tin, and I've purchased tins of buttons, the metal can react with
certain
types of buttons. Tightly closed glass jars, though, will/can cause
buttons
to mold and rust. (I have about 6 LARGE jars of various kinds of
buttons I
won at a country auction that are STILL in the closed jars I got them
in
because they smell moldy and musty and have turned green. I hope to be
able
to wash them some day, when I have NOTHING else to do.)

READ ON--->

I separate my buttons by 1) type of material; then by 2) color. My
plastic
buttons - those I'm relatively sure are plastic and not bakelite or
celluloid - are in large, wide-mouth canning jars with tulle over the
opening, secured by the appropriate "ring" lid. This way the buttons
can
breathe. I also store my wood, composition, leather, fabric/fiber,
bone/horn/antler buttons this way. You don't have to go out and spend
alot
of $$ on jars - many of my jars are the "mason" jars that spaghetti
sauce
and fruit came in. They're meant to be reused! I use the "Bonne
Maman"
jelly jars for buttons or colors I have is smaller quantities. (I
never
seem to have enough purple or orange buttons, for some reason...) I
will
close these jars tight with their metal lids if the buttons ARE NOT
plastic
or metal, Bakelite or celluloid. ****This way I decrease the risk of
the
plastic buttons "gassing off" in an enclosed space and causing chemical
changes in them, in case I missed a Bakelite or celluloid in that jar,
or
the types of plastic react adversely.*** Important safety tip!

Now, for my glass and Mother of Pearls----> because I love them SO
much and
love to run my hands through them and look at them in the privacy of my
studio space like some grizzled miser, I went out and bought many of
those
Plano deep, divided tackle boxes that come with moveable dividers.
(They're
about $5-$6 each.) I keep all the glass buttons together, sorted by
size and
color. I sort the pearls by size, number of holes, and style - with the
most
beautifully carved one separate from the "shirt" or common
two-or-four-hole
round ones.

I also have one box of "precious-to-me" buttons - enamel buttons whose
paint
I don't want to get chipped off with careless, forgetful handling - as
well
as other delicate buttons (the few hand-painted china button I own, for
example).

For advice on cleaning buttons I go to

http://www.tias.com/articles/buttons/archives/98_04_05/articles.html
for
probably more information than you want, but IMO the best resource for
information

http://www.buttonimages.com/collector_info/cleaning.htm for a briefer
tutorial
Comments:
Goodness I feel the need to say oh puleeease! They are just buttons for heavens sake! I have an enormous amount of them including two 'biscuit tin' containers that are still happily storing buttons of all varieties for more than 60 years without any damage! (Including pearl, glass, horn, wood and even stored the buttons off an 1800's police uniform for about 40 years until I used then on something else!Seems I am the likely target for inheritance when there is a tin of buttons!
Beautiful buttons should see the light of day and look great in antique jars but they look even better being used!
I have tiny buttons for baby clothes which have been on my clothes as a baby, stored 25 years til getting put on my childrens, then stored another 20 odd years to go on my grandchildrens and are now I think languishing in a Tupperware container somewhere!
However if collecting buttons to sell, I suppose some sort of science sounds good to justify the price.
Here endeth my rant!!!!!!!!!!
 
A little anal pehaps :)
 
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