The idea to transform little vintage buttons into earrings kept nagging me for quite some time, but taking a crack at it sure took even longer. The logistics of removing and sending down the shanks off of tiny buttons, which when held down between my fingers leave very little space to maneuver the Dremel sanding attachments, took a bit of brain burning. None of the sanding tools in home improvement stores or pliers seemed to be helpful, but I finally figured out the best way to prep the buttons.
To minimize the horrible glass dust cloud, which used to banish me to my back yard, I purchased a Plexiglass grind box. I wish it was a bit bigger since maneuvering the Dremel and the buttons needs some finessing, but I love the fact, that I was able to get rid of the dust mask and goggles. My fingers still get sanded, burned and poked with flying bits of glass, but the final effect is so worth it.
Some of the buttons I found are modern, made using the same old molds used even back in the 19th century. They are truly stunning, especially in the lovely shades of blue with golden yellow aurora borealis finish.
The vintage and antique buttons are my favorite, some near 100 years old. I get a bit nervous, when working with them, since not all of them survive the assault of modern day power tools...
This last pair of buttons is 80-90 years old. I love how the hand painted background makes the raised flower design pop.