Handmaker's Factory

Index Card Tutorial - Buttonholes


MADE-Tutorial---Buttonholes

Types of Buttonholes
  • Square: Your standard, square buttonhole.
  • Rounded: For lighter weight fabrics. The diagonal stitches on the rounded buttonhole do a better job of securing themselves in the looser weave of the fabric.
  • Keyhole: For heavier fabrics. The keyhole shape allows the buttonhole to stretch open farther than a regular buttonhole would in stiff, thick fabric.
  • Zig-zag: Designed for stretch fabrics. The zig-zag stitches allow the buttonhole to stretch with the fabric instead of staying rigid. 
Tips for Sewing Buttonholes
Always purchase your buttons before making your buttonholes. For a machine like mine, the button fits right into the buttonhole foot and helps determine the length of the buttonhole. If you make your buttonholes before buying the button, you will have a harder time getting the right fit!
Even when using your buttonhole foot with the right button fitted in it, it is a good idea to try it out first on a swatch of fabric to make sure that it is the right size for the button. Buttons of different thicknesses, even if they are the same diameter, need different sized buttonholes.
Buttons should always be sewn on fabric that has been interfaced or has at least three layers of fabric to be sewn into. When you are making your test swatch, make sure to use the same number of layers or add interfacing.
Note that it takes more stitches for a machine to go back up the second side than it did for it to come down. Be careful of this to make sure that your machine is lining up its buttonholes correctly and that your second side does not fall short. This is another reason to make a test buttonhole and adjust accordingly.

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