As seen on this weeks Great British Sewing Bee, this lovely hand finishing detail is time consuming but excellent for finishing delicate fabrics and lingerie. It is a useful technique to accomplish as it can be used for Button Loops- as illustrated- the ‘eye’ for a Hook and Eye fastening, delicate Belt Loops, and even swing tacks for petticoats and linings!
Start by lining up the top edges of your garment, then placing the Button where it is destined to be sewn. Place a Pin underneath the Button to mark its position, and put the Button to one side.
Thread your Needle (I’ve used double thread however; single is fine), and stitch through the edge of the Fabric from Front to Back where the bottom of the Loop should be (above left). Anchor securely. Where the top of the Loop should be, stitch from Back to Front (above middle). To clearly see where the Loop should lie, place the edges of your garment together, and wrap the second stitch around the marker Pin. Pull gently and if the tops of your Garment remain in line the Button Loop is balanced (above right).
I also like to make the loop slightly shallower then the Button itself- I think it makes it a little tidier and less likely to gape. To do this I place the Button next to the second stitch and make sure it is slightly lower (middle picture above).
Anchor the stitch again (by either taking a couple of stitches on the spot or tying a knot), then thread the Needle from back to front through the Loop. Before pulling too tightly, thread the Needle through the back of the stick. Pull tight so that a small knot forms. Repeat all the way around the Button Loop. If you become tangled, un-thread the Needle and smooth out the thread. Sometimes running a little Beeswax over the Thread helps- an old Quilting technique- as it enables the Thread to pass smoothly through the Fabric.
Wrap your beautiful Button Loop around the marker Pin again to check the tops of your Garment are still in line. If they are not, sometimes you can adjust the positioning of the marker Pin (which is why we do not sew the Button on first!) however; you may have to unpick your work and re-make the Button Loop if they are still misaligned.
Finish by sewing your Button on!
As I am having to work quickly to fit The Great British Sewing Bee in to my schedule, I am utilising other blogs too! Find a similar Button Loop Tutorial over at Oliver & S, with a slightly different Crochet technique, and another at Pattern Scissors Cloth.
I am nearly done making the alterations needed to make up my sure to be gorgeous Tunic Top- Colette’s Sorbetto– which I hope to be making up tomorrow. I am so pleased that The Sewing Bee has inspired me to make some clothes for me again!