Laura commented on my last post, “Why not use vertical buttonholes?”, which, DUH!, was the solution. Â Or half of the solution – the other half being how to align the buttons and the buttonholes gracefully. Â I’ll spare you the gory details of my attempts – which involved round, triangular, and bar-shaped buttons, hand-dyed maroon silk for buttonholes, and lots of progressively more desperate ideas – but I finally settled on this:
I haven’t yet decided whether these are square buttons with inconspicuous hand-worked buttonholes, or a square bound buttonhole with matching (i.e. essentially invisible) buttons. Â I am leaning towards the square bound buttonhole, both because I think it will be more stable (the fabric is quite coarsely woven) and because square buttons are prone to twisting. Â If I put a medium size, round button covered in black suede against a larger square buttonhole, the button should be more or less invisible, so from a distance, all you’d see is the square.
As you can see in the photo, I think I like having it with less of the vest showing – this way I get a thin black stripe that emphasizes the vertical striping and echoes the thin red stripes separating the Celtic braids. Â It also keeps the emphasis on the handwoven fabric. Â With more black showing, the black gets more attention, and it doesn’t echo the stripes in the fabric.
Having decided all this, I now need to alter the pattern for the vest to include the central panel of Celtic braid fabric. Â I may also change the front facing from leather to a woven fabric, so making the bound buttonhole will be easier – but I need to make some practice buttonholes, to see if I need to do that.
Whew! Â Funny, isn’t it? Â that something “simple” can get so complicated so quickly…