a button wreath tutorial, but you didn’t really need me

Really. You didn't. You guys could work this one out. But I had requests, so here's how I do it.

You'll need:

  • PVA Glue – a white general crafter's glue that dries clear, important to note, CLEAR drying glue! I can't stand glue guns and hot glue and it bloody hurts when you inevitably end up burning yourself. Trust me PVA works fine.
  • A piece of board at least A4 in size to use as backing for the wreath, nice dense board at least 2mm thick and preferably with a coated paper one side. I've used crocodile board.
  • A printout of the template at 100% or scale it to suit your needs, this one is for a 145mm diametre wreath.
  • Buttons! Lots of them. Decide your colour theme. I've used a mixture of new, vintage and scrapbooking buttons. Also, different sizes and textured buttons make for an interesting wreath.
  • A piece of ribbon or whatever you'd like to use to hang your wreath, previously I've used a linen tape, this time I'm using a vintage green velvet ribbon.
  • A buckle to assist with the hanging, I've used a vintage mother of pearl buckle.
  • Scissors

Ok, here we go.

Firstly. Get your template, cut it out and trace it onto the piece of board you're going to use, then cut it out. If you have a few rough edges you can sandpaper them or use an emery board to smooth them.

 Cut out your board

Now the fun begins. Get your cardboard wreath and grab the biggest buttons you are going to use. Start laying them out onto the wreath and add the other buttons to get an idea of placement and to have a play. At this point you could take a photo and keep it available as a reference. This will also give you an idea of the amount of buttons you might need so you find out sooner that you need more!

 Dry run

Start gluing. I glue the largest buttons down first. I usually lay the largest buttons down and arrange them to get an idea for placement and then start gluing these in place. You don't need to go overboard with the glue, apply glue to the back of the button and stick it down. See in the image below how you can see some of the glue, it doesn't matter, this glue dries clear. Once it's dried, all gone.

Add the biggest buttons first

Keep on adding and gluing buttons on. See below, I'm adding more and more and starting to overlap some. Buttons that have a flat shank (not a metal loop) can also been used and are good for sitting on top of other buttons to fill in smaller gaps.

Starting to fill in

Keep on adding more and more buttons, filling in as many spaces as you can. You don't want to see much or any of the board if possible, even overlapping the edges slightly on the inner and outer of the wreath. In this case I like the croc pattern on the board and don't mind if it peaks through. I prefer my buttons to sit as flat as possible, so when layering I try not to have many on angles. Once you've filled in as much of the board as you can, start your layering. Adding some buttons over the top of your base. It helps to also have some itty bitty scrapbooking buttons to fill in small spaces.

Keep on layering 

Then, once you've added as many as you'd like let it sit to dry overnight. Make sure it's on a flat surface as the board might have buckled when you started adding glue, once it starts to dry it should flatten out.

Next. You want to add your ribbon/buckle for hanging. I like to use a buckle and ribbon and hid the knotted ribbon behind the wreath. Tadaaaa! You're done. Enjoy. Add a picture of your wreaths to the existing flickr group "Button: Wreaths, Trees, Balls and Flowers".

EDITED: 5/11 – Here's a pdf of the tutorial including the template for you to download and print. Download Button-wreath-tutorial-craftapalooza.

Green-wreath1_1

And here's a couple I've previously done.

Wreath white

2085422918_d2d8b5fcb0_o

38 thoughts on “a button wreath tutorial, but you didn’t really need me

  1. jessica says:

    i love it. i love it.
    i love it a lot.
    thanks for not insulting my intelligence. yes, i know i could figure this out but it is so nice that you are sharing your brilliance with us. you have saved me time for sure. thank you.

    Like

  2. fiona says:

    fantastic, toatally love it i see many of these lovelys in my button future:)Much like a horoscope a button future, hopefully involving large vintage finds at the op shop and not puppy eats favorite pretties…but i digress.YAY!!!and thanks fi xo

    Like

  3. kate says:

    I cannot tell you…how excited I am to purchase a glue gun and to start sticking!! Ever since I saw your wreaths…(I think you made one for Al?) I have been busting to have a go. Now that the tute is written, I really have no excuse! Thanks Nic!

    Like

  4. Lina says:

    Funny to read your comments about glue guns. I have a ton of vintage buttons and was looking for some instructions on how to make these. Event bought a glue gun especially….darn it, looks like I needn’t have bothered!

    Like

  5. Jenn Erickson says:

    I absoltuely love this project. Thank you for the inspiration. I come your way by way of “Little Paper Dog” who featured your project on her blog. I’m a huge fan of buttons and simply love what you’ve done with them here. The buttons you used are incredible. Any tips on good vintage button resources? Thanks! Jenn
    P.S. I’m subscribing to your RSS knowing that more good stuff is certainly in store!

    Like

  6. luci says:

    i love buttons. mamma holli posted your idea for me to see. love it love it… especially as you dont like glue guns either! pva all the way. now I need to make one, I guess x

    Like

  7. Sandra says:

    Hello! I just stumbled on your site via Sew Mama Sew and just realised that I have one of your pin cushions! Bought at Stitches & Craft this year in Sydney from someone who said they were selling on behalf of someone else. I guess that was you. I love it, thank you! I love this button wreath also, might have to give it a go.

    Like

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