Laser cut Wooden Buttons
Laser cut Wooden Buttons
Laser cut Wooden Buttons
Laser cut Wooden Buttons

Up until about a year ago I hardly ever wore shirts with buttons. Now, I have a collection of dress shirts that I am fairly proud of. One shirt in particular though was lacking a bit of character. What it needed was some wooden buttons.

I used a laser cutter for these buttons but they could be made with hole saw and a drill (and a little more time investment).

Step 1: Laminate the Stock Material

Laser cut Wooden Buttons
Laser cut Wooden Buttons
Laser cut Wooden Buttons
Laser cut Wooden Buttons
Laser cut Wooden Buttons

My first step was to make custom plywood. This is an optional step as you could use 1/8 inch instead. I decided to make custom ply because I could use more exotic hardwood.

First, cut 4 small sheets of veneer about 4 by 4 inches.

Next, spread glue on three of the four pieces and stack them up.

Finally, clamp the stack really tightly between two pieces of wood and wait a few hours.

Step 2: Cut Them Out

Laser cut Wooden Buttons
Laser cut Wooden Buttons

Once you have a small piece of plywood lay out an array of buttons on Illustrator matches the dimensions of your stock. My buttons have a 1/2 inch diameter with 1/16 inch holes. The laser cutter gives you the power to get really creative here. You could put as many holes as you want in the buttons. You could even etch a design into the top. If you do anything particularly awesome with your buttons please don't hesitate to post a photo below.


Set the laser cutter to the appropriate settings for 1/8 inch plywood and cut out your buttons.

Step 3: Sew Them On

Laser cut Wooden Buttons
Laser cut Wooden Buttons
Laser cut Wooden Buttons

The final step is to simply sew them onto your shirt. Use a seam ripper or sharp blade to remove the old buttons and replace them with your fancy new wooden ones.

 
 

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