How to Sew a Button

Learning to sew can be daunting. However, taking baby steps–like learning how to sew a coffee filter or how to sew a banneton basket–is a great way to bite the bullet and learn to sew. The startup cost is minimal, and the clothes you will be able to rescue and mend will make learning this simple process totally worth it.

This pair of funky, patchwork overalls were a gift from a dear friend. They’re vintage, so they are a bit on the fragile side. Twice now I’ve had buttons pop off on me, and unfortunately having a half-button ‘rall look isn’t for me. So, learning how to sew a button became non-negotiable. Here’s the four step, simple process to learn how to sew a button.

needle and thread against sewing mat background

Gather Your Supplies

Thankfully, picking up what you need isn’t hard. You can find thread, needles, and buttons at any craft store. Plus, sewing kits are typically very affordable.

It is important to note–when you buy new clothes that have an extra button in a little plastic baggy–don’t lose this! Start a drawer for miscellaneous buttons, and chances are, they’ll come in handy down the road when you have a button on a favorite top snap. Unless you’re all about mismatched buttons, holding onto these is always a good idea.

  • thread
  • a needle
  • a button
  • scissors

You’ll only need about two feet of thread total per button. Pick a color that blends into the material naturally and won’t draw attention. Keeping black, brown, and cream on hand is a good idea.

Sewing Needle

Any standard sewing needle should do the job. If you’re dealing with a dense fabric, like denim, you will want a thicker needle to penetrate the material. For most lighter, cotton materials, you can use a thinner needle. (Pro tip: the bigger the eye of the needle, the easier the needle is to thread.)


Depending on the project, buttons are mostly an aesthetic decision. When mending a broken button, using the original button is the best choice.


Thread is fairly easy to cut, even with a sharp yank of the wrist if need be. Most basic scissors will be sufficient.

hand holding knotted in needle and thread against patterned fabric

Step 1: Thread Your Needle and Create an Anchor Point

The first step is simple: take your thread and push it through the eye of your needle. When sewing a button, it’s often a good idea to double or triple up on your thread. Then, all you need to do is carefully poke the thread through the need and pull it through to make two parallel lines of thread. Then, tie a basic knot on the end of the thread.

closeup of hand holding a button being sew on against cutting board background

Step 2: Sew the Button to the Fabric

Next, you’ll push the needle through the fabric completely. Make sure that the needle goes through one of the button holes on the other side of fabric. Once you feel a tension, you know that the knot has met with the fabric.

Step 3: Stitch Through the Button Holes

Now that you’re through the first button hole, guide your needle to loop the thread by poking through the other button hole back to the side you started on. Some buttons have two holes, and some buttons have four holes. Either way, make sure to stitch through each hole to learn how to sew a button properly.

closeup of hand holding sewn button on overalls, threaded needle off to side

Step 4: Repeat the Stitch and Tie the Knot

To secure the button, repeat the stitch several times. This will keep it from snapping easily. Once the button is securely in place, simple tie a knot to the back of the fabric, where you started. Trim any remaining thread. Voila! You’ve learned how to sew a button.

Tips for How to Sew a Button

What is the strongest way to sew a button?

Although using strong thread is important, the best way to sew a button is to double up your stitches. You can even triple-stitch to form a secure bond.

How do you sew a one hole button?

Use the hoop to thread your button and attach it to the fabric. Follow the instructions above but rather than stitching through two holes, sew through the hook on the back of your button.

How to Sew a Button

How to Sew a Button

Yield: 1

Stop paying exorbitant amounts for tailoring clothes! Fix buttons that have snapped off with these easy instructions.


  1. First, thread your needle. To do this, push a strand of thread through the eye of the needle and pull it back toward you.
  2. Create an anchor point by tying a knot on the back side of the fabric
  3. Push the needle through the fabric completely. Pull it through until the knot catched the thread.
  4. Sew back and forth through the holes and the button, securing the button to the fabric.
  5. Tie a knot on the backside of your fabric. Trim the thread.

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