When I was removing the buttons from the cushions prior to taking the cushions apart, I started thinking about where I was going to get new buttons that would match the new fabric. I checked out the price of new plastic buttons and also those fabric button making kits, but quickly realized that with the number of buttons I needed (40), that was way more money than I wanted to spend on this project.
The solution turned out to be very simple and inexpensive. I removed all the old buttons from the lawn chair cushions and covered them with the same floral fabric I used for the main part of the cushions.
Onto the back of scraps of the floral fabric, I traced 40 circles large enough to cover the front and most of the back of the button. (The top from a spice container turned out to be the perfect sized template.)
Next I hand sewed a gathering stitch around each fabric circle.
Then I placed a button in the center of the gathered circle.
I pulled the thread as tight as I could without breaking it and then knotted it firmly.
Pictured below are three of the 40 buttons that I covered with fabric.
Installing the buttons:
In order to correctly position the buttons on the back of each lawn chair cushion, I placed the paper pattern over the completed back cushion.
When making the paper pattern, I had transferred the positions where the old buttons had been onto the paper pattern. I placed a pin at each of these points and then lifted the pattern away.
Then I carefully flipped the cushion over and repeated the process on the other side of the cushion back.
Then I sewed a button front and back at each position using heavy duty thread and a long doll making needle by bringing the thread back and forth several times through each button shank and the cushion and pulling the thread tight on each pass through.
This also turned out to be a two person job and our son wasn’t available that day to man the camera, so unfortunately we don’t have photos of the actual sewing on of the buttons but if you look closely at this before and after shot you can see the fabric covered buttons blend beautifully on the newly recovered lawn chair cushion.