How to Make Bottle-Cap Buttons for Knit Slipperscomments (5) December 13th, 2008
This knit gift idea will be much loved by any recipient with cold winter feet, and is shockingly fast to knit up! I designed these slippers in my early knitting years, when I was still very inexperienced, so they are way simple, using only knit stitch, increases and decreases, and some knitting in the round with double-pointed needles. Unlike many slipper patterns that are knit large and then felted, these slippers are knit on size 11 needles with several strands of yarn, making a thick, dense fabric, so no felting is needed.
You can find my free "Mary Jane-Style Booties" pattern on my website and on ravelry, or you can click this link to download the pdf file directly. All slipper instructions are in the pattern.
The slipper pattern calls for two decorative buttons at the ends of the straps, and since the buttons are not functional but only for looks, I love using bottle caps instead! I'm always one to use recycled materials in my crafts whenever possible, so putting a couple of fun bottle caps on a pair of slippers instead of buttons is my kind of modification!
Of course, you can use this bottle-cap button concept for items beside the slippers—how about adding a few embellishments to a beer-lover's hat gift? Or sewing a cluster of them onto a bag? Fun stuff!
- Two bottle caps
- A hammer
- A thin nail
- A sewing needle or tapestry needle
- Embroidery floss or yarn
With a thick piece of cardboard or a newspaper protecting your work surface, hold each cap on its side and hammer around the edges to smooth down sharp points.
Sometimes there will be a point that won't want to smooth out—just stop when it's all smoothed enough that it won't injure anyone or tear the slipper yarn.
When you have squashed all sharp points, it's time to punch the holes. Hammer the nail through the top of the cap in two spots, or four or more spots if you want.
When the nail is all the way through, wiggle it around a little to open up the hole.
The back sides of the holes are probably sharp with pointy bits of metal sticking out, which could cut the yarn or thread you use to sew on the caps.
So take some rough sandpaper and sand down the hole backs until they aren't so sharp.
Now you have two handmade buttons, personalized for your particular slipper gift!
Sew them onto your slippers and your gift is complete! If you use yarn, you only need to stitch it on once; there's no need to go back through the holes again if it seems secure.
Repeat for the second slipper. Tie tightly and weave in the ends. Ta-da!
And now for some other examples! If your loved one has a special attachment to a particular beer (or soda), how about designing the entirety of the slippers around that beverage?
Or if you find some cool bottle caps with images, your slippers don't have to have anything to do with beer or soda.
Or liven up the buttons with extra holes and multicolored stitching:
Lastly, if you can't find bottle caps that you like, you could decoupage your own images onto the caps for completely handmade, personalized buttons! Be creative!
After you make this project, show off your work to other members!
Post your project in the gallery
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