I hope you have all had a happy and healthy Christmas. I’ve added some new articles to several pages, and renamed ‘Fun with Buttons’ as ‘Make Your Own’ as there were so many articles on how to make your own buttons. It amazes me that buttons could be so expensive that it was worth the while to spend considerable time making your own. I am a late-baby-boomer, and find it hard to imagine having no TV, no computers, less time working and shopping, high import tariffs, and all the other social and cultural differences that made home-button making a worthwhile activity.
I just had to add the following from 1960 in The Australian Women’s Weekly. I’m sure they seemed like good ideas at the time!
Last night, searching through the National Archives, I found a reference to Ornacraft Pty Ltd, who were button manufacturers. I guess it shows how important the rag trade and manufacturing was pre-tariff reduction in Australia that we had so many button makers operating at one time in a small country. I’ll put a new reference to them on the post WW2 page.
Here’s a reference to blow your buttons off:
” ‘World Button Town’ – Qiaotou Town. The small Chinese town, with about 800 button factories and 40,000 migrant workers, produces 65% buttons of the world’s supply.”
Yesterday was TOO hot to do anything productive, so a day trip to the Tyabb Packing House antiques complex was in order. Now I have a new mystery:
The card is printed with Oz Works P L, and a pre 1995 Richmond (Melbourne) telephone number. This company only has 5 people and is variously listed as dealing with finance, “durable goods”, “mass consumption goods”, plastic products, wholesaling, and market consultancy. Did they import/wholesale the buttons or just print the card they are mounted on? Hmmmm.
I’ve just re-photographed many of my Beutron buttons, as my collection has evolved. I’m the most excited about my new little friend ( below). I know that he was only one of a series of cards made for children to collect in the 1950’s. How I wish I could send for one of the booklets! Sigh.
Does anyone has any of his little friends ( like teddy, owl, rabbit, etc) needing a new home …. ? (hint hint)
G’day. Started the Christmas cake today. I’ve been making it from an Australian Women’s Weekly cookbook since I was 15 years old. Dad would be heartbroken if I didn’t….
Anyway…. Here’s a shot of a few items that round out my Beutron collection; a ‘boil proof ‘buckle, a card of ‘Tecpearl’ (plastic faux-pearl) buttons and a modern set of Beutron ( “A division of J.Leutenegger Pty Ltd. Made in China”). Now I need a set of the clip-on pearl press-studs!
I thought I’d share a little story sent to me by Kate Boulton. Apparently a prisioner at Freemantle Gaol who was good at art used to rip off his lead buttons to draw on the walls of his cell with. The authorities would have his work painted over, then he would make more art. On checking out the Wikipedia entry on Freemantle goal; this was probably James Walsh, a 19th century forger whose art work was found hidden under layers of whitewash. (The photos of some of his art below are from https://allysonadeney.wordpress.com/2010/08/15/the-things-you-can-do-with-a-button/).