This is by no means a complete listing. I apologise if I have overlooked anyone, and will happily add anyone brought to my attention.
AUSTRALIAN THREAD Pty. Ltd:
Subsidiary company of Tootal Group. Imported Tootal brand buttons made in the USA.
Burns, Philip & Co. Ltd.
Two Scotsmen, James Burns and Robert Philip, founded this company in 1870 to establish a regular shipping line between Sydney and Townsville. They expanded along the Queensland coast and into the South Pacific, including Papua New Guinea, Tonga, Samoa and the New Hebrides. During WW2 the company was a major trader in this region. Perhaps this was why it was able to tender for pearl Buttons for the Navy. It became a major food manufacturer before delisting in 2006.
COATS PATONS (Australia):
From the combination of two British textile firms ( Coats and Patons &Baldwins) which later merged with Bonds Industries in 1969. They imported Tootal brand buttons made in the USA into Australia.
E.C.BIRCH Pty Ltd:
A family owned wholesale haberdashery distributing company started in 1926 by Edgar Charles Birch, in Melbourne.
FASHION BUTTONS: 1953- today
Thanks to Mark Neighbour, the 3rd generation managing director of this family owned company, for this short biography:
Fashion Buttons was established in 1953 by Mark’s grandfather, and taken over by his father in 1961. Mark worked for Beutron around 1976-1978. He joined the family business in 1988. As well as being wholesale suppliers they cover, dye and engrave buttons. Mark tells me that “In the old days, Sydney and Melbourne worked their own markets with little overlap”.
HABERDASHERY SALES Pty. Ltd:
A private company started in 1963. Has distributed “Dressmaker” brand buttons. Located previously in Richmond and now in Heidelberg West, Victoria.
Hooper and Harrison Pty. Ltd., Sydney:
Hooper and Harrison were operating from Sydney from 1889. The original partners were Alfred Harrison and Thomas Hooper. Starting in Sydney, they would expand to have warehouses/outlets in Adelaide, Hobart, Melbourne and Brisbane, London and New Zealand. The company owned the Invicta trademark. They were primarily wholesale suppliers of woollen products and tailors’ trimmings, but did employee tailors and so probably produced clothing as well. They imported cases of buttons. At one stage the company seemed to have been a subsidiary of the Australian Woollen Mills Ltd.
Isherwood & Bartlett, Melbourne:
Charles Henry Isherwood (1883-1941) and Walter Charles Milward Bartlett were small good traders and warehousemen, with outlets in Sydney, Newcastle, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide from at least 1900 until 1950.
KORBOND INDUSTRIES Pty. Ltd:
A private ‘piece goods and notions’ company started in 1956. The headquarters is in Ingleburn, New South Wales.
LINCRAFT AUSTRALIA Pty Ltd:
Sells buttons packed in Australia for the company on Lincraft branded cards.
M. RECHT ACCESSORIES:
Started in 1950 by Michael Recht in Melbourne to supplied accessories and trims to the clothing industry.
Thanks to Deborah for the collection of sample cards.
MT SULLIVAN & CO /SULLIVANS INTERNATIONAL Pty Ltd:
An Australian manufacturer and distributor of trimmings, sewing and craft accessories, established in the 1980s.
THOMAS BROWN AND SONS Ltd:
Started in 1898 from exisiting Brown’s family businesses as a Queensland company involved in drapery, grocery, and general merchanise. See also http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/brown-david-laughland-3073
PANKY’S Pty. Ltd:
This company started advertising button covering machines, dies and moulds in 1946. It later advertised as a button merchants and importers. It went into liquidation in 1974.
POLYFIELD Pty Ltd:
Established in Sydney in 1985. A supplier, distributor and wholesaler of fashion trims including buttons.
VINCONA Pty Ltd:
Based in Marrickvale, NSW, and started in 1985, this company were distributors of apparel and footwear (including buttons). They have changed name to All Gifts Online, and not appear to sell buttons anymore!