If you follow me on Instagram, you will not at all be surprised by this latest tutorial. Impending deadlines, a rather empty end-of-January bank balance and last week's high winds combined beautifully to create a number of buttons for a piece I am currently finishing up for a magazine.
Over the years, I have spent a lot of money on branch buttons sourced from Etsy. I wish I had realised how quick and easy they are.
Good branches in the diameter you need for buttons. I used whatever had fallen in the garden, looking for straight ones with a smooth bark and little lichen and moss growth. I found hazel and fruit branches the best, giving a lovely finish.
A tape measure
A pen for marking depth and buttonholes.
A saw - I used a jig saw for most of them, but also my hand saw worked well.
A drill and a 2mm wood drill bit.
Finishing treatment. I used a natural beeswax and olive oil treatment similar to this one, but if you are going to wash these a lot, consider a varnish treatment.
Vice. Optional, but definitely makes it all quicker and easier
Lay out your branches. Mark the depth of the buttons you want. I found about 0.5cm (or 1/4 inch) about right in terms of giving a secure button.
Secure your branch with your vice if using, otherwise hold secure and start cutting the rounds. After a bit of trial and error, I would make a guide cut with my handsaw and then use the jigsaw, but not required if you are of steady hand.
Once you have collected your rounds, use your drill to make holes for sewing on. If you are concerned about making the holes evenly spaced, measure them out and mark with your pen.
Use your sandpaper to smooth the edges and finish as required.