Previously at Hivewire and YURdigital.
Real buttons! Merchant Resource!
These are images of real buttons, mostly saved off of used clothing. Some were collected by my mother (1909-1991), which means that most of them are from 1920-1985. I'm sure that the bulk of them are from the 1950s onwards. However, she was raised by her maternal grandmother, so there may be some earlier than 1920. There are nicks and dings. I did wash and clean as best I could, and in a few cases photoshopped a little of the damage off. However, they all look like used buttons except for one or two that were still on the paper card they'd come on.
The buttons themselves range from about a quarter inch to several inches across.
The holes are all about the same size in real life. That means that the larger the holes look on the button, the smaller the button is.
The materials were a little different then, and many of the items might be bakelite or nylon or something else that looks like plastic, but isn't what we consider plastic today. Also, I can tell you by experience that many of the older buttons, especially plastics, did NOT go through a hot water wash or a dryer set on high without warping or melting. However, the ones in this set are mostly the more durable ones. They survived long enough to outlast the garment they were attached to.
A fancy button was frequently used as a decorative item up by the collar or neckline area of a dress, blouse, coat or jacket, and then plainer, smaller buttons were used to fasten the garment.
What's Included & Features
42 Transparent button images varying from 463x466 pixels up to 1014x1019 pixels.
The list below has the size of the png, my best guess for the material of the button, and my best guess at the use for the item.
Terminology - the terms used at the time the buttons were originally in use:
"Coat" means a full length coat to hip or knee.
"Jacket" is approximately waist length.
"Blouse" would be a woman's fancy shirt for dress-up.
"Shirt" is either gender but plain for everyday use.
01 - wood - 953 x 974 pixels - Coat button
02 - wood - 1014 x 1019 - Coat button
03 - metal - 680 x 663 - probably a jacket button
04 - plastic & yarn - 989 x 974 - There is a plastic ring inside the button that the yarn was wrapped over. The middle of the button is yarn only and you sewed through that to attach the button. This is from a blue sweater I had in the 1960s-1970s.
05 - plastic? - 1339 x 1346 - Coat button
06 - wood - 710 x 714 - coat or jacket button
07 - plastic? - 923 x 927 - coat button?
08 - plastic? - 956 x 960 - coat button?
09 - plastic? - 868 x 870 - coat or jacket button
10 - plastic? - 749 x 747 - jacket button?
11 - plastic? - 649 x 646 - blouse or dress button, probably decorative
12 - plastic? - 632 x 632 - blouse or dress button, probably decorative
13 - plastic? - 713 x 709 - blouse or dress button, probably decorative
14 - plastic? - 699 x 694 - jacket or dress button, probably decorative
15 - plastic? - 659 x 658 - jacket or dress button
16 - mother of pearl - 440 x 439 - shirt or blouse button
17 - plastic? - 470 x 469 - shirt or blouse button
18 - plastic? - 636 x 635 - blouse button
19 - plastic? - 454 x 456 - blouse button
20 - plastic? - 874 x 867 - coat or jacket button
21 - plastic? - 449 x 450 - shirt or blouse button
22 - plastic? - 510 x 509 - blouse button
23 - plastic? - 463 x 470 - shirt or blouse button
24 - wood? - 463 x 466 - shirt or blouse button
25 - plastic? - 505 x 502 - blouse button or children's button
26 - plastic? - 614 x 612 - Children's clothing button
27 - plastic? - 633 x 635 - blouse button
28 - plastic? - 720 x 729 - jacket button, or decorative button
29 - plastic? - 465 x 465 - shirt or blouse button, this one is I think from the 1980s
30 - plastic? - 503 x 504 - blouse button
31 - plastic? - 627 x 629 - blouse, jacket or decorative button
32 - plastic? - 408 x 410 - blouse button
33 - plastic? - 607 x 608 - blouse button
34 - plastic? - 513 x 519 - blouse button
35 - plastic? - 453 x 452 - blouse button
36 - plastic? - 476 x 491 - blouse button, was new on the card
37 - plastic? - 369 x 372 - shirt button
38 - plastic? - 443 x 443 - shirt or jacket button
39 - plastic? - 385 x 394 - shirt button
40 - plastic? - 526 x 528 - shirt button
41 - plastic? - 355 x 360 - shirt button, or the inside fastener for pants or a jacket
42 - plastic? - 480 x 481 - blouse button