Buttons & Holes (2011)

Buttons and Holes was a piece made in collaboration with members of the public. The materials and instructions for sewing buttons onto a piece of cloth were left in three different locations (the Armed with Needles group show at Bank Street Arts – Sheffield, the Furnival Building reception Sheffield Hallam University, and the Site Gallery Canteen – Sheffield) and people were asked to simply sew a button onto the cloth.

I then produced a corresponding buttonhole cloth. The main point of this work is that sewing buttons on is probably the most basic sewing skill, (colloquially used in negative terms for a lack of sewing skill ie “I can’t even sew a button on.”) but, while sewing button holes (with the right equipment) is not much more difficult, the perception is that making button holes, or indeed doing anything more difficult than sewing buttons on, is an esoteric skill.

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