How to Sew a Button with a Shank

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 47,948
    Dressmaker Elaine Terrell demonstrates how to sew a button with a shank onto a jacket.

    Elaine Terrell: Hi! I am Elaine Terrel, I am the owner of Elaine Terrell's Dressmaking and Alteration and we are here in my workroom where I do my sewing and today I am going to show you how to sew a button with a shank onto a jacket. Now, here is the jacket and I have it marked right here, I am going to put the needle in from the top of the fabric and pull it through and this is so that the end of your thread and the knot is going to be hidden under the button and you won't have that showing on the underside of your garment. So we are going to put this thread through one of the holes in the button. Now I have put the thread through each of the holes in the button and in order to create a shank which is just a little bit of space between the button and the garment you are working on; I am going to use a kitchen match and I just going to stick that through between the threads in the center of the button here where I am stitching and then all you want to do is take a look at the underside when you are bringing your needle through and pull the thread up. I happened to be using a double thread and that means I don't have to put the needle through quite as many times and you can pull it tight because the match is holding the button up at least an 8th of an inch.

    Okay, now when you are done sewing it on you are going to take the needle and thread and put it through the hole in the button but don't try it through the fabric. Pull it out like this, hold the button up away from the garment and just remove the matchstick, put the needle through some of those threads just to strengthen it and then just wind that thread around maybe half a dozen times and knot it. Again you are going to be knotting it between the button and the garment then you are going to cut your threads. So then what you have is a button that's sewn on with just as little bit of space between the button and the garment and then when you button it there won't be any puckering. It will be just a nice flat fit and that's how you sew a button with a shank onto a garment. Now next we are going to hem a pair of pants.