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Tying off buttons

Started by bobbin, April 24, 2014, 08:35:55 pm

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bobbin

This is the year of the button!  I have several customers who want buttons on their cushions.  I bought the marine grade coverable buttons (#36) and the plastic tufting discs (can you buy these in different sizes, too?).  Is there an easy way to knot that minimizes loosening of the twine?  (something akin to putting your finger on the ribbon before you actually tie the bow?). 

MinUph

It's call the Upholsterers knot. Basicly a slip not tied and pulled to adjust and then just tied off to lock it together. Hard to explain how to do it but it is just one side of the two twined with a single knot with the other twine in the middle. It is quick and easy but not to explain. Maybe someone else can explain better.

Google upholstery knot. There are some Youtube videos on it.
Paul
Minichillo's Upholstery
Website

SteveA

I've learned two different ways to tie buttons.  One is the Uph knot that min up tells you about and this one is sort of a figure 8 cross over and can be adjusted in or out after tying.  The other is simply a slip lock knot that is basically a couple of half hitches over the two strands then thread the loose end through the loops that were created- this knot can't be reversed.  The reversible knot is the one I use when there are two buttons tightened at the same time and the depths of the buttons next door must match.
SA

Mike

bobbin do you need a button press ? I bough one and a set of buttons and disk years ago I used them once on a paying job once on my own boat cause I had it stupidly I sold it

bobbin

I figured there had to be a better way to do it and you guys would know!  Thanks for the tips, I'll snoop around on You Tube and see what I can find. 

I do have a button press... dies for #30, #36, and another one that's really small.  Love it!

sofadoc

I used some large cord for clarity to show how I do it (basically what Paul was describing, I think).
After pulling the button down to the desired depth, then I tie it off a couple of times.

"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban

Mike

Are we talking a cushion bo. In cause when its a hard bottom as in a boat ive just stapled the cord down after they pass through a hole in the bottom

bobbin

No, it isn't a hard bottom (I wish!).  I've pulled the twine through the back of the cushion and through the centre hole in a tufting disc.  Then I spread the two lengths of twine through the little slots on either side of the centre hole of the disc and around once so the lengths go through the opposite slot.  (make sense?).  But I haven't quite mastered how to easily control and keep the tension on the button.  I'm getting a nice result, but it's hard on my hands and I was curious as to whether or not there is an easier way to do it. 

How much do you guys charge for covered buttons?  I know what the components involved cost and my mark up, but I haven't yet done enough of them to have a good handle on the time (money!) they involve.  Any thoughts would be appreciated. 

MinUph

I've never charged extra for buttons unless it was a tufted piece then there is a per button charge on top of general labor.
Paul
Minichillo's Upholstery
Website

bobbin

Appreciated, Paul! 

I'm a "time is money" kinda gal.  I know how long it takes me to do most things, but I haven't had enough experience to set "times" on things like covered buttons (components+time+installation time).  I don't generally have a lot of call for them, but 3 requests for them on rather large yacht interiors has me scratching my head. 

Darren Henry

Quotebut it's hard on my hands


If you mean the thread is "cutting into" your fingers you can cure that. Back when I was making shoes and stitching harness I made a set of rings for the part of my pinky and index fingers that the thread hurt. I cut a strip of 4-5oz leather about 1/2" wide and skived both ends and put glue on them where they would overlap and put them on like a bandaid. Once the glue was set I just slip them on and off when I need them. My old set is still back in Kenora so on the odd occasion I'm tying alot of string I just put a couple of cloth bandaids on.

Quote(something akin to putting your finger on the ribbon before you actually tie the bow?)


If you aren't using waxed button twine;rub a little bee's wax on the twine before you pass it through the cushion.The knot will stick were you set it while you make the other knots and then lock them off.

For those who haven't done this: fold your piece of twine in half and hold it in one hand.Grab your cake of bees wax in the other and place the twine between it and your thumb.Then draw the cake down to the ends of the twine QUICKLY a couple of times.
Life is a short one way trip, don't blow it!Live hard,die young and leave no ill regrets!

sofadoc

Quote from: bobbin on April 24, 2014, 08:35:55 pm
This is the year of the button!  I have several customers who want buttons on their cushions. 
When I was a kid growing up in the family upholstery business, I practically made buttons full-time. Seemed like every piece had at least 5 or 10 buttons, and many had 50 or more. And covering them in vinyl was always a dicey proposition. We had a worn out press that you had to slam with all your might, which often cut the vinyl. Sometimes only 1 out of 5 came out usable.

DIY'ers used to come in and order buttons by the dozens.

Nowadays, I sometimes go a full week without even looking towards my button station. Then I'll have a run on button jobs. But nothing like the old days.

Most supply houses used to make buttons for shops that didn't have a press and dies. I don't think that very many of them still do.

We used to order molds on a regular monthly basis. A 5 gross box didn't last very long at all. Through the acquisition of surplus stock from local shops that have closed in recent years, I haven't ordered any molds in a long, long time.
"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban

west coast

Bobbin , I agree this is the year of the button. I have done more tufting this year already than the previous 3. I am just getting ready to do 450 lineal feet of curved diamond tufted booths for a pub, it will be 7 days a week for the month of May so I can get it done on time but then its into the fifth wheel and seeya

bobbin

Wow! you want information? go to the pros!  Thanks a million you guys... esp. for the hand saving tips.