Wednesday 16 October 2013

How To: Felt Eyeball Buttons for Halloween

With Halloween just around the corner, I thought I'd squeeze in an extra tutorial this week... how to make fun felt eyeball buttons!


I used my buttons to customise an old cardigan - perfect for adding a spooky touch to an outfit this Halloween.

Felt buttons are quick and easy to make!

You will need:
- small pieces of black felt (for the pupils) and blue, green and brown felt (for the irises)
- matching sewing threads
- soft white felt (30% wool blend felt is perfect for this) or white fabric
- 22mm cover buttons
- a button covering tool (optional, but very useful! I use the Prym universal button covering tool)
- a needle and a pair of embroidery scissors
- the circle templates at the bottom of this post

If your cover buttons are a different size to mine, use a pencil and a compass to draw your own templates for the pupil and iris.

To add the buttons to a cardigan you will also need.... a cardigan, matching sewing thread and some pins. If you want wear the cardigan more than once, make sure you choose washable (synthetic) felt when making the buttons!

1. Use the templates to cut out one white eye from felt or fabric, one black pupil and one coloured iris.

2.  Place the iris and pupil in the centre of the eye and sew them in place with matching threads. Sew the pupil in position with a small X made from two stitches, then sew the iris with a line of small running stitches. Trim any excess thread at the back.

3. Now follow the instructions on your pack of cover buttons (or look online for a how to) and cover a button with your decorated circle of felt/fabric. Using a button covering tool makes it much easier to snap the front and back of the cover button together and the holes in the tool I use are very helpful for checking that the decoration on your button (in this case, the pupil and iris) are in the centre.

4. Repeat steps 1-3 to make a selection of eyeballs with different coloured irises. If you want you could also add some red stitches to the eyes for a bloodshot effect.

To add your eyeball buttons to a cardigan, first remove the original buttons (apologies for the low quality of some of these pics, navy blue is a real pain to photograph!).


The buttons on most cardigans are likely to be much smaller than the large eyeball buttons, so the eyeballs won't fit through the buttonholes. Because of this you need to turn your cardigan into a jumper (sweater) by sewing the front together (make sure the neckline of your cardigan is large enough that it's easy to take off and on again!).

Pin and then sew the front of the cardigan shut, using matching sewing thread and small running stitches. Make sure you don't sew the front and back of the cardigan together!


Then use a double thickness of sewing thread to sew on the eyeball buttons, sewing them securely in place through where the old buttons were. I left off the final button at the bottom as I preferred how it looked with just five buttons.

And you're done! :)

Click here to view the template sheet in another window/tab, and print it at 100%.

You may borrow a couple of photos if you want to blog about this project, but please remember to credit me and link back to the original source, and do not reproduce my tutorial on your site. Thanks!

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homemade@myplace said...

this is fun!!!
thank you, xxxx Ale

Bugs and Fishes said...

Thanks Alessandra! :)

sam said...

Love these buttons. So cute

Bugs and Fishes said...

Cheers Sam!