Friday, 27 November 2009

Second Post today!!

How about that, don't post for a week, then twice in a few hours. I've been dyeing buttons this morning, and for those who have asked about it, I thought you might want to see the results.

The purple worked really well, the turquoise less so, so I added a bit more dye and 'cooked' them for a bit longer, and the lime was good......The orange and the pink worked well. Even the buttons that didn't take the dye very well, that were going to be rejects, look a bit more interesting when all mixed in together.You need Disperse Dye - I get mine from Art Van Go (Apparently there ARE other art shops, but the staff aren't so lovely) Put half a pint of water in an old saucepan. Oh sorry, I forgot the first step - spend about half an hour trying to find where you put the old saucepan. It was in my shed, to ensure I didn't inadvertently use it for food. Although, to be honest, if you're eating something I've cooked, the fact that I used a saucepan that's been used for dyeing, is the least of your worries.

Put a smidgeon of the dye powder into the water. A smidgeon is a tad more than a pinch. I suppose if you wanted to be exact, I'd say a quarter of a teaspoonful. Add the buttons, bring SLOWLY to simmer, and then simmer for 2-3 minutes. And that's it - done! Just rinse, dry and admire.

Some button materials work better than others, and I really can't say what works and what doesn't, you just have to experiment. And presumably, if you didn't like a bit of experimenting, you wouldn't be dyeing buttons in the first place. Unfortunately, those lovely mother-of-pearl buttons don't seem to take the dye, although the cheap pearly ones do. Just try it, and I swear you'll never thrown another shirt button away again!

There's enough dye in each jar to dye about half a hundred weight of buttons, so you could club together with some other barmy mates, and get a selection of colours, and all dye together. (Please make sure you spell the invitations correctly though, don't want people getting the wrong idea)


  1. I keep forgetting that I want to try this so thanks for reminding me. Of course it now means I have to have a trip to Art Van Go... such hardship!

  2. Great results. I like your previous post too.
    Now are you going to sew them on to something?
    I get so mixed up with dyes..are disperse the same as transfer dyes?

  3. Thanks Jackie, yes they are caleld transfer dyes too.

  4. Great fun! I suppose they all started off white?

  5. Never occured to me that this was a possibilty. What are you going to do with them all?
    Have you seen this:
    And now I need to go out and buy some buttons for a little mauve cardi I have knitted for my friend's sprog... the end result will, in time, end up on my blog...

  6. I love your buttons, I think all the colours worked really well. It's something that I do want to try in the new year! Thanks for showing yours!

    Have a lovely weekend

  7. they look gorgeous!!! Would never have thought of doing it.

    I;ve been meaning to go on a trip to mecca (Art Van Go) for awhile so even more reason now!!

  8. You're cooker will be starting to get palpitations with all this use. Before you know it you'll be the Delia Smith of the button world :-)