Sunday, 23 June 2013

Kaffe's Cap

It all started with a handful of white plastic buttons from my vast collection...
 
 
plus a teaspoon of transfer dye in a small pan of water in which to simmer the buttons for 5 minutes. Tempting though it might be do not attempt to poach your eggs at the same time if you try this at home. Fuchsia eggs are not appetising...

 
However, fuchsia buttons are very pretty.

 
Armed with this collection of pretty buttons I made myself a Kaffe Fassett inspired buttoned cap.

 
I love it, but it really did take forever... I crocheted the cap in a couple of evenings but have spent the entire weekend sewing on buttons.

 
One hundred and forty three buttons since you ask... plus eighteen beads.

 
And I hate sewing on buttons... so I think my plans for further buttoned hats might be put aside for a while.

 
I'm wondering whether Kaffe Fassett hates sewing on buttons too. Maybe that is why his hats cost £480 at the Fashion and Textile museum.

 
Not sure I would get away with charging that much!

33 comments:

  1. I have to be honest it has never crossed my mind to dye buttons but what a great result!
    That was a lot of sewing on!! It does look lovely. :)
    V xxx

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  2. Ha - no probably you wouldn't get away with it but it's worth a try!! What fab colours those buttons turned out - never thought of doing that! x Jo

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  3. I have to say buttons are one of my least favourite things but I'm fascinated by this transfer dye, I'm going to have to check this out as my mind is racing with the possibilities! x

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  4. Well done, it is certainly original!! I didn't realise it was possible to dye buttons, a great idea.

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  5. Want to see it modelled please, what hat pattern did you use? It's quite windy here could have done with a hat today! (Norfolk)

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  6. I often wondered how people got such a lovely collection of coloured buttons - now I know. Great idea and thanks for sharing the method. The result is gorgeous and if you wear your hat people will think you have been very extravagant buying such a pricey item!

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  7. You can dye buttons? Now that is something that I have learned!

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  8. Oh well done, it looks brilliant! I'm afraid mine is still at the planning stage. I've only JUST got around to posting about Wednesday, never mind creating anything! I am not worthy. Will be picking your brains for the crochet instructions though. xx

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  9. oh my Gina - you really do go for it when you make up your mind! lol. I never realised that buttons would take up the dye - something to stash away for future reference. what a wonderful result - but... will you wear it?

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  10. I'm with you on sewing on buttons so I'm glad you've done a time and motion study for us ;-) The hat is lovely so I hope you'll give it an airing. Kaffe probably has assistants that sew the buttons on for him.

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  11. Great way to colour buttons, great hat!

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  12. Oooh! I didn't know buttons could be dyed liked that. Your hat is very pretty.

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  13. Now that is just gorgeous. I love it, Ax

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  14. I dyed my first buttons about 4 years ago and was absolutely thrilled with the results. Yours look gorgeous, I am a button fan.

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  15. The colours are heavenly! I made a cotton sunhat for myself whilst at college. It was slightly wonky *coughs* and I covered it in buttons in just these shades. I used to get odd looks when I wore it out. I didn't really care. I adored my hat.

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  16. I didn't know you could dye buttons like that! How cool. If sewing them on is a pain in the unmentionables could you not thread them onto the yarn (through two holes) before knitting and slide them into place like you do with beads? Please note I have never mastered that method with knitting beads but a lady with such talents as yourself may be able to?? x

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  17. In Switzerland for Easter, eggs are hardboiled, in colours and even patterns. But with edible Easter egg colours ...

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  18. Now if only I could crochet, suppose I could knit a cap. Love those dyed buttons. Do wear it.

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  19. I have no idea how Kaffe Fassett gets away with charging that much!

    Pretty buttons :)

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  20. WOW Gina! I LOVE it! I don't think I even knew that you could dye buttons. Very, very cool!

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  21. £480 is a BIT excessive, but yours is a work of art, that is a lot of buttons. Can't say I enjoy sewing them on either, (especially on other people's shirts). I have dyed buttons - just one or two, in a bit of transfer dye in the microwave - worked fine. I just did it for a few seconds, I'm not sure what happens to buttons if you microwave them for long.

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  22. I love it! I never realised that buttons could be dyed.
    I HATE sewing on buttons so I can understand how you must have felt but the end result is fab :-)

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  23. DYEING BUTTONS! I never knew!! All those buttons I've rejected from my button jar because they were boring white plastic....

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  24. Great hat and buttons! I don't think KF does his own sewing!!

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  25. Great button cap Gina, the colors and shapes and differing button sizes add lots to the overall effect. Is the cap heavy with all those buttons? Perhaps the plastic buttons are a bit lighter than those buttons I've seen decorating the clothing of the Pearlie Royalty.

    xo

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  26. What a fantastic hat, I love the dyed buttons,I've never done that. I really hate sewing on buttons too, and hooks and eyes.

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  27. I'd forgotten that buttons pick up dye although I should do as I've had a few washing disasters in my time! You had a lot of patience to do that hat Gina. Pray tell me why there is no photo of you wearing it?

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  28. Crumbs! I didn't even know you could dye buttons! Yours look like they were always that colour. Fabulous hat though! xCathy

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  29. Well, well, you learn something new every day on this blog! I too have a vast collection of buttons, and I separate the white ones (why?!). I've not heard of dyeing buttons, but these look fantastic! Is the hat heavy I wonder? I hope you were able to just sew the buttons on with a continuous thread ... what a chore to get them all on there. It looks really cute though, and well worth the effort ;) Wendy

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  30. I visited the Kaffe Fassett exhibition today and really enjoyed the beauiful displays. I noticed the hats! I too am amazed that buttons could be dyed like that - could be fun. I expect to see you out and about wearing that fantastic hat.

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  31. I am playing catchup yet again. I always loved Kaffe Fasset's knitting books and made a few things absolutely yonks ago. I love your dyed buttons stitched on the beanie - does it make it very heavy? I had never thought of using transfer dyes to colour buttons, but I have done it with Dylon dyes, not the range of pretty colours though. Cheers

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  32. Gina, I am SO jealous of your ideas, and time to do them all and look and be so calm through it all... You are my aspiration as well as an inspiration to me, if I can say that in English. I love the hat idea.

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