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Kansas City

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Meeting Highlights & Program

 

March 2011

 

Dayna shared but a small portion of her impressive button collection with the club.  When she was 3 or 4, Dayna’s grandmother (who was a seamstress) let Dayna play with the buttons in her button tin.  Dayna was fascinated by the variety and started to collect buttons on her own when she was 5.  She has collected ever since.  Dayna loves this collection because of its tactile nature and the way that it satisfies several of her senses.  The club learned that button collectors systematically mount their buttons on cards, grouping them according to size, material, style, and so on.  Over time, Dayna transferred thousands of her buttons to the cards, which were unfortunately destroyed years ago due to a flooded basement.  Undaunted, Dayna salvaged what she could and renewed her collection, this time going for jars and bottles of buttons and shying away from card stock.
 
Buttons seem simpler than they are but there are actually many components to buttons and button-making.  Prior to mass production, button-making was a cottage industry that sprung up along rivers and the seashore.  Shells were the key materials for early buttons; they could be used as found or inserted into a die-press that popped out a usable button.  The Industrial Revolution made it easier to mass produce buttons of all sorts except fabric—fabric buttons must be finished by hand.
 
Buttons nowadays usually have steel cores, in the past they might have had cork or wood cores.  Dayna showed fabric buttons covered with crochet, wool, rayon, silk, and even a feed sack!  Dayna’s program is the tip of the iceberg of her collection, and only a small fraction of the possibilities that are available.  Dayna shared some fun anecdotes about the importance of buttons in the past.  At one time a young unmarried lady would start saving odd buttons on a string and when she added the 1000th button, the man of her dreams would ask for her hand.
 
The buttons that Dayna displayed highlighted the variety of materials, styles, and uses.  Some of her buttons have been incorporated in jewelry, such as pins and broaches.  Some of the largest buttons were used on capes or cloaks.  A few of the highlights included glass, carnival glass, Bakelite, bone, leather, rubber, and ivory buttons.  She showed a few celluloid airplanes and ships from the 1930s.  Dayna noted that button collecting has grown to the point that artists are now commissioned to create Studio Buttons for special events, conventions, or specialty shops.
 
Dayna invited the club to gather around the display and handle her collection to complete the experience.

 

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Show & Tell

Club members brought the following treasures for Show and Tell!  Here are some highlights from this meeting.  Descriptions of each treasure is found below the pictures using the corresponding number.

 

1.
Imperial crystal Cathay Pavilion Tray, circa 1949.
2.
Tiffin Killarney Green 12” pearl-edged bowl.
3.
Farber Brothers Tantalus set with two amber Cambridge #1369 Melon Fluted decanters and six cordials, circa 1935-1941.
4.
Morgantown Hollywood decorated 10 ˝” Lynward decanters, one with red band and one with green band.
5.
Morgantown Peacock Blue console set consisting of the #9928 Leeds flowerlite bowl and #9935 Barton candlesticks.
6.
US Glass crystal and ruby flashed Rising Sun sugar bowl.
7.
Fostoria employee #87 badge.
8.
On the right is a Westmoreland Glass cardinal in Apricot Mist. 
On the left is a Viking egret in red.
9.
Westmoreland Glass marigold carnival Wild Rose syrup pitcher with metal top, circa 1915.
10.
Fostoria crystal and opalescent Heirloom #2725/311 candlesticks, made between 1959 and 1970.
11.
Duncan Teardrop 4” candlesticks in clear.
12.
Duncan 11 ˝” Viking boat in clear.
13.
Viking flat-back lion and panda bear bookends and frosted lion figure with an overhanging paw.
14.
On the left is a Northwood amethyst carnival Three Fruit ruffled bowl.
On the right is a Fenton cobalt carnival Little Flowers ruffled bowl.
15.
Fostoria American 3” candlesticks, made from 1915 to 1986.