Chic Knits Downloadable Knitting Patterns Chic Knits Downloadable Knitting Patterns Chic Knits Knitting Blog Chic Knits Knitting Tips & Techniques Chic Knits Bonne Marie Burns Free Knitting Patterns
Studio Chic Knit Blog

New Threads Retro Style September 15, 2011

Lots of people, when I tell them how much I love knitting, make a little puckery face, and go “Not for me – I just don’t have the patience.”

This always makes me smile. Heh. :)

Being a rather Type A sort of person, the irony is either lost on me, or knitting really isn’t something that needs an extraordinary, grit your teeth kind of commitment, at least from my POV.

It’s so modular, it breaks down into two states: knit or purl.

But then, then, a project can get interesting. And it has nothing to do with the knitting.

Take my little trip to my personal button store the other day when I tossed a variety of disks onto a neutral surface and let nature play.

Who won the most pleasing (and most functional) round?

The buttons dubbed Copper Penny, a lovely umber metal with a deeper grey center.

These were the ones my eye went to in the pictures as being the most organic, with a little kick. That umber was grinning after all.

So, I sat down with my coffee early one morning, and proceeded to start sewing them on the sweater, and before I knew it, three buttons were on. But, just like in the multiple-choice test in junior high, I got a sinking feeling that I should’ve gone with my first answer. Holding just one disk in my hand, it felt even heavier than a US nickel, certainly heavier than a dime (just what is our money cast from lately, plastic?).

I tried the sweater on and watched in the mirror with yet another sinking feeling as the button side of the sweater dragged down and flopped around.


But even with this obvious fail, I still wanted to avoid trying to take those three buttons off the band. As if wishing would magically lighten them, because the yarn in the garment might fight me when I went backwards in time and tried to undo my fabulous sewing – yes, I mean it when I attach buttons; they’re really not going anywhere.

So I weighed the buttons.

All of them, in groups.

And, weirdly enough, this Geek-Much? Moment revealed that the Copper Penny buttons were not only heavier, they were 3.5 times heavier. They weighed 0.7 ounces and all the rest about 0.2 ounces.

So off they went.

And on?

Why the lovely ocher colored disks…

Now, these came in third, but since then the second placers have found a new home (!), just like Miss USA waiting in the wings at the pageant, the next runner-up had to step up and do its duty.

And a lovely duty it is. It was hard to take a picture of these that minimized the shine – because these actually look a lot like they’re made from Bakelite-type material, the world’s first plastic fantastique.

Bakelite is one of my favorite things! Here’s a search on google on the word: Bakelite. Check out these bracelets! Here’s the color of my buttons in the classic yellow as a pair of earrings…

Short history of different major Bakelite products invented before 1930
– 1912 – A Bakelite record invented by Thomas Edison. (USA
– 1912 – Bakelite billiard balls invented by Hyat Burroughs. (UK)
– 1914 – The telephone receiver made in Bakelite by Western Electric. (USA)
– 1915 – Eastman Kodak camera gets a Bakelite case. (USA)

I like!

It’s a retro-looking cardigan and now, it has retro-looking buttons.

©Bonne Marie Burns
All Rights Reserved
Unauthorized reproduction in any form prohibited.

Site Design: BigBrain Multimedia/Bonne Marie Burns

"ChicKnits" and "Chic Knits" are the ®Registered Trademarks of Bonne Marie Burns of Portland OR