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How to Display Pinback Buttons

People have been expressing themselves with fun and inexpensive pin-back buttons since the mid-19th century. Many people still wear buttons to show off preferences in music and politics, to make jokes or to announce something to the world. An attractive display is the best way to show off a collection of buttons or to show off your wares if you’re selling buttons.

Picture Frame Display

Purchase a picture frame in the size you desire. You can purchase one that will hang on the wall, or one with a stand for tabletop use.

Remove the glass or plastic covering. Take the backing out of the frame.

Cut a layer of 1/2-inch-thick cotton batting to the same size as the frame backing. Glue it onto the backing with craft glue.

Cut a piece of velvet fabric so that it is 2 inches longer and 2 inches wider than the backing. Lay it on the backing over the batting. Fold the edges of the velvet over and affix them to the back side of the picture frame backing with tack glue. Smooth the velvet as you work to remove any wrinkles.

Return the backing to the frame, but leave the glass or plastic covering off. Attach your buttons to the board by inserting the pin into the velvet. Hang or stand your framed button display.

Mannequin Display

Shop around for an old mannequin or dress form. You don’t need the head or arms as much as you need the torso and stand.

Drape a T-shirt or sweater over the torso.

Attach the pins to the shirt or sweater. Display the mannequin or dress form on the stand.

Hoop Display

Choose an embroidery hoop in the size you desire.

Measure a piece of heavy cotton fabric, such as broadcloth, and cut it in a circle that is larger than the hoop by 3 to 4 inches around. Finish the edges by hemming them with a needle and thread, or use hemming tape if you prefer.

Enclose the cotton in the hoop, stretching it taught. Pin the buttons to the stretched cotton.

Things You'll Need:

  • Picture frame
  • 1/2-inch-thick cotton batting
  • Craft glue
  • Velvet fabric
  • Tack glue
  • Mannequin or dress form with stand
  • T-shirt or sweater
  • Embroidery hoop
  • Heavy cotton fabric
  • Needle and thread or hemming tape
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