Buttons and Buttonholes

- - Sewing

Buttons and buttonholes – two designer “secret weapons.” It’s easy to select buttons as an afterthought, but taking the extra time to consider the size, shape and material of your buttons can make the difference between a well thought out design and a garment that just needed to be completed. 


Shank buttons at Dolce & Gabanna

Signature buttons or buttonholes can become your hallmark as a designer. The placement of your buttonholes may be what makes your design stand apart from the rest. And if you have any doubt about the importance of buttons and button holes, do a contrast test. Lie buttons of the same color on your garment, then remove and replace contrast color buttons – you will see the impact instantly. The same goes for using contrast thread when creating your buttonholes – one more opportunity to incorporate a design detail that may enhance your inspiration’s message.



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This week, we launch our latest video Introduction to Buttons & Buttonholes. In it, you will learn what buttons are made of, how they are sized and how to sew them. Just as important as how to sew buttons and buttonholes is how to place them for both form and function. Our newest video will teach you how to plan your buttons and button holes for both vertical and horizontal placements. We also provide an overview of the tools that will make your job easier.


Asymmetrical button placement at Céline

Whether you select bone or horn buttons to reflect your penchant for natural, earthy, grounded design or sleek metal or rubber buttons to mirror a more modern aesthetic, paying close attention to seemingly little details like buttons and buttonholes can make a big difference in the message you convey through design.

Images: Style.com

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Kara Laricks is a regular contributor to the University of Fashion. She’s also a New York based women's wear and accessories designer. As the first winner of NBC's Fashion Star, Kara has designed collections for H&M, Macy's and Saks Fifth Avenue. Her masculine meets feminine line, Kara Laricks, debuted at New York Fashion Week in 2012 and her S/S 2013 collection sold exclusively at Saks Fifth Avenue. Kara's designs have been featured on the Today Show and HBO's True Blood as well as covered in Women's Wear Daily and on Style.com. Kara holds Master's degrees in both Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Kansas and in Fashion Design from the Academy of Art in San Francisco. An educator turned designer, Kara is dedicated to supporting emerging designers and inspiring others to follow where dreams lead.