How To Sew On A Button: Complete Guide

Sewing on a button is a simple task that anyone can do. Whether your goal is to save money by avoiding a trip to the tailor, or you simply want to extend the life of your clothing, learning how to sew on a button is a valuable skill.

In this article, we’ll show you everything you need to know about how to sew on a button, including the supplies you’ll need, the different types of stitches you can use, and step-by-step instructions for each.

Different Types Of Stitches On Sewing On A Button

how to sew on a button

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There are a variety of ways to sew on a button. The best way to determine which method is best for your project is to choose the type of stitch that will provide the most stability and durability for the item you are working on. Here are some of the most common stitches used for sewing on buttons:

Running Stitch

The running stitch is the most basic type of stitch and is typically used for hand-sewing.

  1. Thread your needle and knot the end.
  2. Push the needle through the fabric from the backside.
  3. Pull the thread until there is a small loop on the backside of the fabric.
  4. Push the needle through the loop to create a small stitch.
  5. Continue making small stitches in this manner, keeping the stitches as close together as possible.


The backstitch is a stronger stitch than the running stitch and is typically used for machine sewing.

  1. Thread a needle and knot the end.
  2. Insert the needle up through the fabric from the backside at the point where you want to start stitching.
  3. Pull the thread through to the front and then put the needle back down into the fabric a short distance away from where the thread first emerged.
  4. Continue bringing the needle up and then down, making sure to insert it into the fabric at the same spot each time so that the stitches are evenly spaced.
  5. When you reach the end of your seam, knot the thread on the backside of the fabric.


The whipstitch is a good choice for sewing on buttons because it is strong and can be done by hand or machine.

  1. Cut a length of thread that is about 18 inches long. If you are using a sewing machine, you can use a shorter length of thread.
  2. Thread the needle and tie a knot at the end of the thread.
  3. Put the needle through the fabric from the backside. Bring it up through the first hole on the button.
  4. Put the needle through the second hole on the button.
  5. Continue stitching the button to the fabric, going through the holes in the button and coming up through the back of the fabric.
  6. Tie a knot at the end of the thread to secure the button. Cut off any excess thread.

Supplies Needed In Sewing On A Button

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Needle and Thread

You will need a needle that’s small enough to fit through the buttonhole and thick enough to support the thread. As for the thread, use a color that closely matchs the garment. If you can’t find an exact match, go for a color that is close in value (light, dark, etc.), but not in hue (red, green, etc.). This will help the thread blend in.


Obviously, you’ll need a button. If the button is missing, you can buy new ones at a fabric or craft store, or even reuse an old one from another piece of clothing. Button sizes are usually described by their diameter, and range from about 1/2 inch (13 mm) to 4 inches (100 mm).

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You’ll need these to cut the thread. Scissors come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes, but any type will do for sewing on a button.


This is optional, but can be helpful in pushing the needle through the fabric. Timble comes in different sizes to fit different fingers.

Seam ripper

Also optional, but can be helpful if you need to remove a previous button. Seam rippers look like a small pair of scissors with a fork-shaped blade and are used for undoing stitches.

Tailor’s Chalk or Water-Soluble Marker

Again, optional but useful for marking the position of the button on the fabric. Tailor’s chalk is a soft, waxy substance that comes in different colors and can be easily brushed or rubbed away. Water-soluble markers are just regular markers that can be removed with water.

Final Thoughts

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Now that you know how to sew on a button, you can put this skill to use anytime you need to repair clothing or other items. Buttons are a common fastener, so it’s handy to know how to sew them on securely.

With a little practice, you’ll be able to sew on a button quickly and easily. So don’t be afraid to give it a try the next time you need to repair something with a loose button.

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