These buttons represent my original interpretation of period manufacture and design. Each button has my signature, date of manufacture, and metal content.
The buttons are inspired by two buttons recovered from an archaeological site in the Strasburg, Virginia area - one pewter button and one silver colored (possibly silver plated or gilded) - that I have in my type collection. I have done extensive research in archaeological reports on buttons recovered in digs, and examined historic texts on button manufacture and design.
My buttons are composed from a sheet of 16 sterling silver sheet that has been hammered using a modified repousse’ technique. An O ring of 14 gauge round wire is formed on a wooden mandrel, initially soldered, then cut, creating a flat area on one side. Then it is soldered again, this time to the back of the sheet. Historically buttons were either cast, as seen in molds recovered in English archaeological sites, or made of sheet. The loops on the back were then soldered in place. Buttons are great as historic markers due to variations in their design and manufacture over time. I have chosen this style because it works well with my designs and it is within the historic period of the shows I do in the Williamsburg area and at The Village of Yesteryear at the October NC State Fair.
I use a variety of designs for the buttons. Four different cross patterns are represented in the photos. They are an early 6th century Byzantine cross based upon one found in Jerusalem next to the Western Wall of the 2nd Jewish Temple, a design labeled ‘Peter’s Cross’ (seen in photos of other jewelry on this website), a design labeled ‘Paul’s Cross’ based on the archaeology of Herod’s palace at Caesarea and photos I made there in 2002, and a design of a rugged, rough hewn cross with a piece of fabric hanging from one bar. Other designs include a Jewish ‘chai’, (a Hebrew term for ‘life’), and two common Celtic/Irish designs (these last three designs relate to my family’s history). I have also done plain buttons and buttons with initials hand engraved upon them.
These buttons can also be used as cuff links with the addition of a connecting link.