Button Barrettes

Earlier this  month, I promised that I’d show you the Christmas gifts I made for less than $7.00.  Today, I fulfill my promise!

This summer, I went to the Cornerstone Music Festival in Illinois.  When visiting the merchandise tent, I saw these hair clips that had buttons on them.  They were cute, and I totally ripped off the idea for my Christmas gifts this year.  I had some pretty buttons, and my mom had a bunch, too.  All I needed to buy were bobby pins, snap clips, and super glue.

When you’re ready to work on making these, you should have the bobby pins, snap clips, and super glue available, plus a rag to dry them on.  Having a wet rag handy is good, too, in case you get glue on your fingers.  Please heed the warning on the super glue bottle that this glue BONDS SKIN INSTANTLY.

Seriously.  It’s not fun to have your fingers glued together.

Not that I’ve done it or anything.


You’ll use the bobby pins for shank buttons.

You’ll use the snap clips for the flat buttons.

Okay, so I took a bunch of photos while I was making these.  But since the items were so small and I was trying to get close-ups, almost all my photos were blurry.  I think I know how to fix that next time — zoom out until it’s not blurry, and then crop the photo to get the image I really want.  But I didn’t do that this time, so please try to use your imagination.  Honestly, these are so easy you hardly need a photo-tutorial.

For the shank buttons, slide the top part of the bobby pin into the hole (shank).  Put super glue all around wherever the button and the bobby pin touch.  In the hole, on the bottom, everywhere.  Let each piece dry on a rag.  Or, you may have to hold onto it for a while until it dries if the button is sliding around.  The glue does dry pretty quickly, so you shouldn’t have to hold it for long.  If you are able to set it down, don’t put it on paper, because the paper will stick to the glue and you’ll have to pull it off later.  When it’s completely dry, you can put them on cards for safe-keeping.

For the flat buttons, the first thing you’ll need to do is open up the snap clip.  At first, I thought it would be best to put a piece of paper in the clip and then close it before gluing the button on, but I found that I ended up getting paper stuck to the clip and the button.  There was one clip I had to throw away because I couldn’t get the paper off.  I was able to save the button, but not the clip.

They aren’t kidding when they call it super glue.

So open the clip, put a little glue on the back portion, and stick the button on.  You will probably be able to gently set the clip down, button side up.  It might take a bit of balancing, but it’s not too difficult.  Again, you’ll want to put these on a rag so that you don’t get glue on your table.

Here are all my clips, drying:

After they were dry, I started matching up the pairs.

And when these are dry, you can also clip them onto cards.

I had some that were in pairs, and some that were singles.  Sometimes you have just one really pretty button without a mate.  That’s okay.  Sometimes a girl wants a pair, and sometimes she just wants one.

It’s a woman’s prerogative!

All my girlfriends are gonna be stylin’ this year!

All my buttons were free (I already had them), and I bought one card of 100 bobby pins and three cards of twelve snap clips, plus one bottle of super glue.  The total cost was less than $7.00.  I made enough to give six people several pairs and singles, and I saved a few for myself.  I spent only about two or three hours working on them.

I’d say that was a good use of my resources, and great way to stay on budget for gifts.


8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Rita
    Dec 29, 2009 @ 12:31:31

    Great tutorial and gifts!
    I enjoy wearing mine!
    I did have a problem, tho’.
    Two flat buttons popped off the snap clips.
    Am I SUPER strong, or what?
    I will try gluing them again.
    I wonder if anyone else had that problem…

    • Karen, the Small Town Runner
      Dec 29, 2009 @ 13:02:34

      A couple of Gina’s were broken when she unwrapped them. I tested them before I gave them, and they seemed to be holding fine! I wonder if hot glue would have worked better than super glue. Is hot glue more flexible, less brittle than super glue?

      • Amy
        Dec 29, 2009 @ 21:18:33

        I would think hot glue would be more flexible, but I have to wonder if it would adhere to the metal very well, especially the snap clips because of the larger surface area. Sometimes hot glue, when dry, peels off the stuff it’s supposed to be sticking together. I’d like to try making a few for my girlies, though, so if I get to it before you do, I’ll try the hot glue.

        Thanks for the way cool (and cheap) way to make hair do-dads. Does Mom have any good buttons left?

  2. Talley Mac
    Dec 29, 2009 @ 19:39:14

    Very cool my friend!

  3. Vanessa (Last Night's Leftovers)
    Dec 29, 2009 @ 20:54:32

    Ok…those are absolutely genius. Love it!

  4. Karen, the Small Town Runner
    Dec 30, 2009 @ 12:46:03

    Amy, I’m not sure. I think I took most of them. *blush* But I have to say, a LOT of them have been there since I was little. I remember playing with the buttons when I was four or five, and I know a good lot of those buttons were there way back then! How was I to know someone else might actually want them? (:

    I’m curious about the hot glue / super glue question. If anyone determines the answer, let me know!

  5. Tracy @ Sugarcrafter
    Jan 02, 2010 @ 15:02:15

    These are, dare I say…cute as a button (Har, har). 😉 Seriously though, these are adorable and such a great idea!!

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