Thursday, September 30, 2010

Treasures on Thursday

I'm back for my Thursday's Treasure.  I want to show you the wreath that finishes out the wall collection with the sewing machine drawer and the handkerchief dress.  I made the wreath from muscadine vines. I soaked them in water until they became pliable and then wrapped them around four very large nails to form a square.  Many of the things on the wreath were my Grandmother's who sewed and quilted.

in the center of the wreath is an old package of embroidery transfers
the fabric pieces are cut for a Grandmother's Garden quilt
tape measure
zipper in a plastic container
cards of buttons and loose buttons

The little string of buttons on the left bottom corner, are all Nannie's buttons.  I had heard of buttons strings and decided to make one with her buttons. Buttons have always been saved and reused, but the Victorian girls were the first button collectors.  They assembled "charm strings".  Each button would be different and were usually a present from someone.  Trading was allowed, but not buying.  The goal was to have 999 buttons avoiding the thousandth button as it doomed its collector to spinsterhood.  Although some believed that the thousandth button led to marriage to the next gentleman caller.  Either way it led to a great many buttons being saved!   In 1870 the popularity of the charm string was widespread enough to inspire a popular song "Give My Button String To Sister".  Words by Florence Linley and music by Charlie Ward.  Until this weekend I have never seen a real button string. But, while in  Jefferson, TX, my sister and I toured their Historical Museum, I could not believe my eyes when I finally saw one.  I was so excited!!  When I made one from my Grandmother's buttons I used buttons with holes, but as you can see on this historic one the buttons were actually shank buttons.  Little things really excite me, and this did.  It was the highlight of the museum for me.

I know it's hard to see the strings because there were several other things surrounding it.  Did you notice the cute little crocheted purse. also.  I wish I knew who it belonged to and how many buttons were on her string. Did she get married before the thousandth button? Can't you just imagine the excitement of sharing buttons, you have to remember these girls would have started collecting at a very young age, because they married young. I really am glad I finally have seen a real true button string.


1 comment:

  1. I love the button string! That would have been exciting as a little girl. You should start you one.


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