Looking for a Little Bit of Cute?

Looking for a little bit of cute?

It’s no secret that we are nuts about felted wool balls around here. They make fabulous little pincushions and by adding a wooden spool, a JABC button face and Just Pin, in no time you’ll have an Acorn Pixie Spoolkeep!

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The Acorn Pixie and companion Sunflower Pixie are perfect examples of our complete kits–you add only needle, thread and a little bit of hot glue. In about an hour you have a pincushion!

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How Do Our Buttons Grow?

How do our buttons grow?

The JABC family is growing — a new logo, a new website, a new book, and a new buttoneer!

While nothing can replace your neighborhood shops for purchasing supplies, we know you want to see EVERYTHING we make. Our new website makes it possible to tell you about our latest button adventures and make sure you will always have access to our entire collection. Many changes are still being made but we hope you visit us soon at www.justanotherbuttoncompany.com.

JABC_logo_FINAL

In the coming weeks we plan to introduce the Just Another Button Company team as we tell you who we are and what we do here.  You’ll meet mixers and drillers and slicers and bakers but for fun let’s start with our newest employee—in fact she hasn’t made her first button yet.

My daughter –and JABC designer—Rachel and her husband Joshua are expecting a baby girl very soon!

Enjoying the adorable baby clothes at Carter's! Having a girl is going to be dangerous!
Enjoying the adorable baby clothes at Carter’s — having a girl is going to be dangerous!

Our new little Miss Button will spend her first years at the button company observing our work and certainly spreading happiness.  We expect we may travel a bit less for a while, but you should see an extra touch of whimsy in everything we do—the delightful effect of working under a special sort of sunshine.

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Buttoneers Dawn, Darla and Clarice are throwing a shower in honor of Miss Button — handmade invitations by Clarice.

We’re all excited here — want to join in the fun?  Be the one person who guesses closest to the baby’s weight and day/hour/minute of her birth (we’ll draw a name if multiple guesses are correct.)   What will you win if your guess is the closest?  One of each button we make—at last count that was over 1200 buttons!

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The grand(baby) prize — one of each button that we make here at JABC!

Miss Button’s due date is November 30, 2013.  Her dad weighed 7 lbs at birth and her mom 7 lbs 12 oz.  What’s your guess?  Post a comment to enter the contest, one entry per person.  We’ll accept entries through November 24 or until Rachel calls me to say today’s the day!

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Grandmother-To-Be

What’s In A Name?

What’s in a name?

Hello. Have we met? Let me introduce myself, Cecile McPeak, founder and creative director of Just Another Button Company™. A number of years ago at wholesale quilt market, I met Joan Hawley. I remember most her friendly smile and contagious laugh. Joan’s booth displayed her Lazy Girl pattern line and she offered a pattern to play with button embellishment. While there have been occasional collaborations between Lazy Girl purse and JABC button, Joan has also become a friend and mentor. I consider being asked to be a guest blogger for her blog to be quite an honor.

lazy girl bag

At Just Another Button Company™ we like to say we are Fifteen and Fabulous to answer the phone — celebrating our 15th year in business. There is usually a pause at the other end of the line, for just a moment, then a chuckle, and quite often a remark like, “Yes, you certainly are.”

In 1996, when we produced our first button embellishments, we were known as Just My Imagination. Within a year, we knew we had a good product needing a more memorable name. It was the peak time of button embellishment on wearable art. Every tradeshow had a multitude of button companies showing really handsome, often handmade, buttons. I should know. I bought lots of them for my personal stash.

There was a niche for our polymer clay buttons though. They were machine washable, thin and very lightweight, ideal for both wearables and decorative quilts, and for framed stitcheries. Yet there was a challenge; we heard again and again from wholesale buyers, “I can’t buy from another button company.”

The name was born. We became Just Another Button Company™. Business experts call it Crowdsource Branding — we called it making lemonade from lemons. Whatever it’s called, it worked! Buyers took one look at the name, grinned, and asked to see the buttons.

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A couple of years ago, we met a tough economic event with a new vision for buttons. What if we turned a button on its edge and drilled a hole there, rather than the two holes we normally placed on the flat surface? Drilled on the edge, then glued to a stainless steel sewing pin, the Just Pin was born.

pk033As our business has grown, I’ve watched Joan create her website, blog, Facebook page and Yahoo group. I’ve sewn her Lazy Girl purses and watched her demonstrate zippers and rulers. She is fearless — TV even! I was inspired to explore all (well, most) of these marketing opportunities. With my daughter, Rachel Martin and all the other JABC buttoneers, we are pleased to invite you to see more of our buttons, Just Pins, and pincushions on our website, and follow our button adventures on Facebook and our blog.

Many, many buttons and fifteen years later we still regularly get comments from satisfied customers who say, “You are NOT just another button company.” We just say, “Thanks.”

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Chief Buttoneer

A Project Waiting to Happen

At Just Another Button Company ™ we love finding unique products to use in our button-y creations. Cecile remembers walking down a Quilt Market aisle and spotting the Handbehg Felts display—she was stopped in her tracks! A rainbow of felted wool balls in every color and size combined to create an enchanting display of creative projects. Handbehg used wire and beads and buttons to make garlands, brooches and pincushions. Yes, pincushions! Cecile was hooked and bought a color card on the spot.

It’s no secret that our handmade button and Just Pin projects favor wool for ease of sewing, even for novice crafters, but felting little wool balls from roving takes a lot of time and patience—a completely different sport.  And that’s where Handbehg comes in.  A variety of the wool balls were added to our library of creative treasures.  There was no plan yet, but all we needed was the right moment.

Just Another Button Company ™ is marking a big anniversary this year with the 15 and Fabulous Celebration of Pincushions.  There is a lot of brainstorming that goes on at JABC to come up with the form and embellishments for each pincushion.  When we came out with the Carrot Patch pincushion, our buttoneer, Rachel Martin proposed a companion piece.  She thought Handbehg’s wool felt balls would make fabulous peas, and pictured a pincushion that would combine several creative elements.

 

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And so, the next month, JABC presented the Sweet Pea pincushion, putting a momentary dent in the world’s supply of 3 cm olive felt balls—our apologies to other crafters who were trying to buy them at that time.

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The Sweet Pea kit contains everything you need to complete the pincushion, except for a needle, thread, and a bit of glue.   Stitchers can find the kits at independent quilt and needlework shops or on our website — www.justanotherbuttoncompany.com.

Thank you for all the great comments we have received from stitchers who’ve said, “I made this pincushion, even though I thought I couldn’t sew!”  We also appreciate the continued support of all our vendors and wholesale customers who have made the 15 and Fabulous Celebration of Pincushions a tremendous success.  Special thanks go to Handbehg Felts for featuring us on their project idea sheet!

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Chief Buttoneer and Lover of Felted-Wool Balls