Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Life in a small space & missing buttons. . .

”dig” out my sewing machine or choose manual labor with a needle & thread?

I absolutely love our full-time RVing lifestyle and living in a 429 square feet space. There very few aspects of living in a house that I miss but I do dearly miss my sewing room!  My precious 1969 Elna sewing machine was always ready and waiting for me to do large and small projects, like replacing buttons.elna sewing machine

Replacing a button with the sewing machine is so quick and easy EXCEPT when it comes to digging into the back of my closet to retrieve the Elna and then making room for it somewhere in our rig, most likely in the way.

See the Elna in its Navy carrier surrounded by my clothes and buried under other bags in the back of my closet?  TOO much trouble to bother with for a few buttons!DSCN8431

So I’ll do it by hand!  Do you know how to replace a button using a needle and thread?  I do!

Of course the original buttons got lost so out came my zippered button bag and I dumped them out to pick out the correct size and color.DSCN8435

Buttons all selected so I’m ready to go.

Thread needle and knot at the end. Bring thread and needle up through the back of the garment and back down through a hole to the back, then back up through a third hole and back down keeping the thread loose.  Slide a straight pin through the two threads and continue to sew the button. The straight pin is serving to add space between the button and the garment, making it easier to fasten.


End the procedure by bringing the needle up through the fabric behind the button.  Then wrap the thread 3 or 4 times around the back of the button to fashion a shank.20151012_134641

Finish up with the needle and thread on the back side of the garment.20151012_134756

Knot the thread and clip it off with scissors.


And there it is…a neatly sewn button replacement on my favorite shorts!20151012_135029

And I did it two more times: my silk Chico’s pants and GET’s favorite cargo shorts:




After replacing three buttons by hand I thought about how much time this had taken and then about how long it would have taken to simply set up my sewing machine and quickly use a zigzag stitch to replace the three buttons. 

Ummm…the machine route may have been faster in the long run!  But, digging into my closet and then getting the Elna wedged back into the corner afterward…maybe it really is too much hassle?

Life in a small space=compromise.