Attaching a Button with a Bullion Bud


“Sweetie Pie” romper and jacket set

Designed by Annette Drysdale of Australia, this charming “Sweetie Pie” romper and jacket set is made of pretty pink gingham and crisp white pique. Featured in issue #94 of Australian Smocking & Embroidery, dainty bullion roses are worked across the smocked insert of the romper, and the buttons on the front of the jacket are attached with matching bullion buds. Follow the Australian Smocking & Embroidery tutorial below to learn how to attach buttons with bullion rosebuds – this is such a lovely, decorative way to attach buttons!

Color and Embroidery Key
A No. 9 milliner’s needle and Madeira stranded silk were used for the embroidery.
Center = 0701 rasberry (bullion knot, 10 wraps)
Outer petals = 0613 med pink (2 bullion knots, 10 wraps)
Leaves = 1408 grass green (2 bullion knots, 8 wraps)
Quick Notes: Using 0701, work a bullion knot between the upper and lower holes. Work a bullion knot on each side of the center knot, in the same holes of the button using 0613. Changing to 1408, work an eight wrap bullion knot on each side of the rosebud between the lower hole and one side hole.


1. Secure the thread on the back. Position the button on the fabric so the holes form a diamond. Bring the thread to the front through the upper hole (A).

2. Take the thread to the back of the fabric through the lower hole (B). Pull the thread firmly to anchor the button.

3. Emerge at A. Take the needle to the back at B. Pull the thread through, leaving a large loop of thread on the front.

4. Re-emerge at A and leave the needle in the fabric. Hold the needle firmly on the back of the fabric.


5. Wrap the loop of thread around the needle in a clockwise direction for the required number of wraps. Ensure they are evenly packed together.

6. Holding the wraps securely, carefully pull the needle through.

7. Pull the thread towards you until the wraps are even and lie firmly against the button. Take the thread to the back at B and end off.

8. Change thread color. Secure the thread on the back and emerge at A, just to the right of the inner petal.


9. Take the needle to the back at B, just to the right of the inner petal. Pull the thread through leaving a large loop on the front as before.

10. Work the bullion knot in the same manner as before. Ensure that it lies to the right of the inner petal.

11. Stitch a bullion knot on the left of the inner petal in the same manner to complete the bud. End of the thread.

12. Change thread color. Work bullion knots from C to B and from D to B for leaves. End off the thread.

Check out issue #94 of Australian Smocking & Embroidery for the complete patten and instructions for “Sweetie Pie” (sizes 6, 12 and 18 months), and shop all AS&E patterns and magazine issues here!

Happy Sewing,


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