Posted: Sep 18 2012
SOURCE: The Art of Manliness
I was in Chicago at a networking event three years ago and found myself with a problem.
The dress shirt I was wearing had apparently “shrank” in the neck as I couldn’t get it to button-up all the way to the top. Although I could normally skip the tie, this event was more formal and going without neckwear was not an option. What was a man to do?
With 30 minutes to spare, I went to the hotel lobby and asked for an emergency sewing kit. 5 minutes later I was cutting off the offending button and within 5 more minutes had moved it 3/4 of an inch. It was still a bit tight, but the shirt buttoned much more easily, and I made it through the event without a problem.
So the question today is: do you know how to sew on a button? You might think that sewing is “girly stuff,” and rely on your mom or wife to replace your buttons for you. But you never know when you’re going to be on your own and need this skill in a pinch; knowing how to sew on a button is a small way of making yourself more self-sufficient.
If you don’t know how to sew a button, but want to learn — below I’ll explain how to professionally sew on a button in 5 simple steps.
FYI – if you’d like more quick style fixes read through this classic AOM article.
Tools You’ll Need:
- Needle (2 if possible) – any basic sewing needle will do, the slimmer the better.
- Thread - you’ll need about 12″ to do the whole process. If you double your threads over (a bit stronger and easier to knot), use 24″. Try to use a thread that matches the garment color, but in a pinch, black or navy are unobjectionable.
- Button – the original, if possible, otherwise simply use what you can find. Most shirts will have a spare set of buttons sewn on the inside of the bottom front. Note: some buttons have two holes, others have four. The method here is for a four-hole button, but can be adapted to two-hole buttons as well.
- Cutting tool - Scissors, knife, or something sharp to cut the excess thread. You can use your teeth in a pinch.
If you’re traveling and don’t have the above supplies, ask the front desk at your hotel for an emergency sewing kit. They’ll very often have one to give you. But because you never know where and when one of your buttons will pop off, I recommend always packing your own emergency sewing kits in your bag and car, as I explain below:For the full article, click here.