Monday, May 5, 2008

dash my button!

as a seamstress, i love buttons. can't get enough of them. they're the icing on the cake, jewelry for your clothes. so of course i love this:

it's an antique button. how neat is that? a birthday gift courtesy of my fabulous sister, who always comes up with the most interesting and meaningful gifts. so today i learned a bit about buttons.

the earliest buttons are from about 2,000 b.c. (from egypt), but they appear to have been decorative rather than functional.

button was not used a verb in english until about the 1200s.

charles de gaulle and jackie kennedy collected buttons. louis xiv spent $6,000,000 on buttons over his lifetime.

in victorian times perfumery buttons were popular and contained little cotton swatches moistened with perfume.

buttons in intrigue: smuggler's buttons are like a tiny pillbox with a twist cap for hiding diamonds or messages inside. also, special army commandos sometimes had uniforms with these buttons on them, to carry poison (presumably in case the soldier was captured and tortured).

poison buttons are different: they have a sharp stud on top that was attached to a tiny vial hidden in the assassin's clothing. the assassin could just "accidentally" brush his victim's skin with the stud, and the poison would flow into the scratch.

dash my button! is an old-fashioned expletive. (love that!)

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