Civil War Uniforms: 9 Tips on HOW TO Choose Inexpensive Yet Accurate Buttons
- Civil War Uniforms: 9 Universal Tips on HOW TO Choose Accurate yet
By Paula and Coach McCoach
1. Get yourself some good buttons. Stay away from plastic and
modern buttons. Go with glass, bone, shell, metal, porcelain, 2-hole
cat's eye or Mother of Pearl.
2. Metal buttons are authentic but they have the potential to
rust and stain your fabric. Some of the sutlers that sell fabric and
sewing items have buttons. Or I have a ton of buttons I might be
talked into parting with. Email me at coach@... or
3. Variety of period buttons including Goodyear and natural
substances. Many of these buttons are good for vests.
4. Buttons can also be found at flea markets, antique stores,
in old button baskets, tins or jars. Frequently, you can buy a
whole jar of buttons for $3 check out the buttons in it, and if
you find a substantial amount of antique buttons, it certainly is
5. Sometimes the jar is as valuable as the buttons! I have
found jars full of buttons with a hundred dollar button in it.
Small items like buttons can make a huge difference and increase the
value of your shirt, jacket, pants, etc.
6. Try to get all brass buttons not plated. Waterbury is good.
Original buttons are a bit pricey but not out of the question. If
you are getting the U.S. Eagle buttons, sutlers have them.
7. Stay away from the ones that are plated. I personally just
use coin buttons. If you are doing a state regiment, you may want
to go with state seal buttons, but I feel that limits your
8. "I" buttons are good for a generic look. For late war
buttons, you can use go the Tate Script "I" which were coming in
later in the war.
9. U.S. buttons can go both ways: U.S. or Confederate. It would
not be unusual to see an Eagle button on a Confederate uniform.
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