Christian Loubutton
December 9, 2014 8:50 PM   Subscribe

I'd like to replace the buttons on my women's winter coat to change/elevate the look a bit (I've done this on jackets before). Is there a particular brand (or shop) of button that has a great reputation? Any I should avoid? Do you have a dream button? Anything I should watch out for, aside from obvious things like "make sure they fit the button hole"? Thanks!
posted by paperback version to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (7 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
I love vintage buttons, myself. Etsy has a huge selection, and I see them on ebay a lot, too. Czech glass buttons are a personal favorite.
posted by mollymayhem at 9:22 PM on December 9, 2014

Winter coats are thick. Either use a shanked button or use a thread shank to ensure there is space for the fabric.
posted by jacquilynne at 10:22 PM on December 9, 2014 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: If the original buttons don't have shanks, will it change anything to replace with shanked buttons? Thanks very much -- this is just the kind of tip I'm after!
posted by paperback version at 10:56 PM on December 9, 2014

Shanks will generally help your buttons sit on top of the fabric rather than squishing the two layers together. If your original coat had neither shanks nor thread shanks and it still sat smoothly when it was buttoned, it may not be thick enough to require them. In that case, getting shanked buttons might result in your buttons sitting a little loosely and on top of your coat when it is buttoned.
posted by jacquilynne at 11:04 PM on December 9, 2014

First of all, I'm giggling at "Christian Loubutton".

Can you post a picture of the coat? That will probably net you more tailored recommendations (see what I did there?)
posted by ladybird at 1:13 AM on December 10, 2014 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: That will probably net you more tailored recommendations (see what I did there?)

Thanks for your contribution to this thread.

Sorry, should have mentioned this! I'm going to refrain from posting a pic, lest people get fixated on it, because I'd like general tips: good brands, bad brands, the best ___ comes from ___, beware of pre-1988 Peruvian copper because it turns purple in the rain, etc. This won't be the last time I switch the buttons on something so it doesn't have to be specific to this coat. Style-wise, I already know what I like.

Basically, if there were a lesson on buttons at Parsons, what would they teach you?
posted by paperback version at 1:47 AM on December 10, 2014 [1 favorite]

Yes: if the originals were unshanked (and looked fine), then the replacements should be shankless.

Otherwise, either find buttons with shanks, or make them yourself with thread (as noted above). Many how-to's on the web for the latter.

Also, buttonhole size is not as critical as you think. Larger ones can be tightened with a double-layer of binding stitches (one set narrowly covering the gap, the second wider). Smaller ones will just need the buttonhole stitching expanded a bit. NBD, by hand or machine.
posted by IAmBroom at 7:30 AM on December 10, 2014

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