Dorset Button

At our online workshop this week, we showed participants the basic techniques to make a traditional Dorset Button Cartwheel design first within a bangle then we translated this skill into a smaller project using a can tab.  We showed how you can use these thread wrapped can tabs as pendants, necklaces and tabs for zippers.  All of the materials for this craft technique can commonly be found around the home.

Click image above to see 'how to, video 

The first commercial Dorset Button enterprise is believed to have been started by Abraham Case in Dorset in the Seventeenth Century.

The original buttons were made from ring of sheep's horns covered using a needle with fine linen thread, with delicately woven designs filling the centre of the ring.  There were many different designs but the cartwheel design is the most well known.

You will need the following for this activity:
  • Bangle or embroidery hoop (to practice the cartwheel weave)
  • Yarn (embroidery thread/floss best for the can tab version)
  • Embroidery needle with a large eye suitable to fit the yarn or thread
  • Scissors
  • Can tab
  • Pliers
  • Clothes peg*

Inspirational websites

Additional to the above there are more ideas, for weaving projects, listed on our website here: 
Getting Creative (

Keep an eye on our website for forthcoming online events: