How to Make Pipe-Cleaner Button Displays

comments (2) March 28th, 2009     

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leethal Lee Meredith, contributor
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I made this sculpture to look like a tree with buttony leaves and button flowers around the base.
These are the only two materials youll need for this simple project with infinite creative possibility.
Buttons stay on pipe cleaners where you want them, making these two objects perfect for each other!
I made this sculpture to look like a tree with buttony leaves and button flowers around the base.

I made this sculpture to look like a tree with buttony leaves and button flowers around the base.

Photo: Lee Meredith
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After brainstorming this concept while trying to think of unconventional button projects, I sat down to try out the idea and ended up building four different sculptures—it was so surprisingly fun playing with pipe cleaners, I didn't want to stop! This is obviously a great project to do with kids, but I also recommend it as a craft project to bring out your inner-child-crafter. I felt like I was rediscovering what it was like to make things for fun as a little kid, with nothing but the simple bendy pipe cleaners, a pile of buttons, and my own imagination!

You'll need:

  • Pipe cleaners
  • Buttons

There really isn't any right or wrong way to do this project—the concept is simply to build a sculpture with the pipe cleaners, with all (or most of) the points sticking out so that you can push buttons onto the tips. You'll need to pay attention to balance—when you add the weight of the buttons, your sculpture may tip over if it's not evenly built and bottom-heavy. There are many ways to go about construction; here is one way...


Start by weaving some pipe cleaners together to create a base.

I got this weaving idea from a Craftypod podcast by CraftStylish blogger Diane Gilleland. (Listen to it while playing with your pipe cleaners for inspiration!) Once you have some woven together, push them all in toward the center to make a more solid base.


I chose all shades of green/yellow for the base to look grasslike.

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posted in: buttons, kids, art, sculpture, child, pipe cleaners, display

Comments (2)

nomadcraftsetc writes: Wow! How extreme! Love it! I think we are going to go and get a bunch of pipecleaners and have fun! Thanks for the photos!


Posted: 10:19 pm on March 29th
croqzine writes: How fun! Looks like a nice kind of therapeutic project... like you said, to bring out your inner-child-crafter. Maybe it would be a great antidote for if you had a creative block!
Posted: 11:00 am on March 28th
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