How to Make Shiny Buttons Dull

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A shiny button may not be the best choice for your project.
A shiny button may not be the best choice for your project. (Image: button image by Edsweb from Fotolia.com)

Shiny new buttons can give your costume, jewelry or craft project the wrong look. For example, if you are creating a vintage-looking piece of jewelry, too much sheen on the buttons gives away the real age of the piece. On a costume, distressed buttons on distressed clothing lend an air of authenticity. To create a scrapbook page with an antique feel, limit the shininess of the buttons to improve the overall look of the craft. Buttons will be distressed differently depending on the material they are made from. Many of the distressing techniques require items you may already have in your house.

Things You'll Need

  • Buttons
  • Sandpaper
  • Black marker
  • Paper towel
  • Pin
  • Chemical antiquing solution

Sand down the surface of the button to remove the glossy finish.

Coat the button with a black marker.

Allow the marker to dry slightly, then wipe away the excess with a paper towel. The black color should remain in the crevices, decreasing the button's sheen.

Scratch the button with a pin to make the button appear aged and dull.

Prepare a chemical antiquing solution according to the package directions. Antiquing solution for brass or copper can be found at a hardware or jewelry supply store. Apply the solution to the button.

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