Thursday, July 19, 2018

The Chameleon


Indoors, I would swear that this Bakelite button is a tone of dark moss, which is a murky greenish huereplete with black swirls. Outdoors in the sunshine, the button reveals its true self: a brown button in a color known by collectors as Mississippi Mud. And that's Bakelite for you, a chameleon plastic of duplicitous shades that aren't always easily identifiable and seem to change sometimes in different lighting. Its color aside, this button sports some excellent carvings and a smart character. Made in the 1930's.

-Sherbert McGee 

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Anchors Aweigh


Last summer I posted a full week of nautical-themed buttons and decided to hold onto this one for a future post. Anchors Aweigh! What we have here is a large "cookie" button with a butterscotch anchor set in licorice Bakelite. Some Bakelite buttons exude lucky vibes and this is one of those buttons. With its beachy emblem and straightforward charm, this anchor could be a tattoo on a louche sailor, circa 1931.

Speaking of 1931, here's a painting from the same year, titled Idylle (Le Départ) by the the ever-chic and über-dazzling Tamara de Lempicka. Among my favorite of her artworks, this one depicts a seaside moment between a pipe-smoking bluejacket and his very blonde ladylove. Recently, I've begun posting paintings by Lempicka once a month and I'll continue to do so until the end of the year. Bon Voyage!   

-Sherbert McGee

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Whatchamacallits?


Well, I'll be snookered! My friend Doreen sold me these buttons earlier this year and I'm just nuts about them. Made of chocolate brown Bakelite, the shape of these buggers is really unusual. I'm not even sure how to describe these whatchamacallits with their their angular, head-and-shoulders curves and their slotted tops. Truly unique, this set of four likely goes back to the 1930's. I've never seen another button like these. Perhaps they are a rare breed?

Visit Doreen's online store:
BUTTONS FROM THE ATTIC

-Sherbert McGee 

Monday, July 16, 2018

Creamed Corn Antiquity


Here's a pretty button made of creamed corn Bakelite with some noteworthy carvings and a heap of buttery charm. Though enlarged here in this photo, this is actually a medium-sized button with a pudgy demeanor and good vibes. Likely going back to the Great Depression, this is the kind of button I hold and think aboutwondering where it's traveled and whose sweater it might've decorated 80-something years ago.

Visit Doreen's online store:
BUTTONS FROM THE ATTIC

-Sherbert McGee

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Joyeuses Pâques


Today is Bastille Day (la Fête Nationale) and this blog does have a significant French following, so happy holiday to all of my Bakelite button fans from Paris to Marseilles and from Toulouse to Saint-Étienne. In celebration of the national day of France, here are two Bakelite buttons with metallic escutcheons, which are very much French. Joan of Arc, meet Napoleon. Napoleon, meet Joan of Arc! Joan's a nickel plate on black Bakelite with the engraved words Bienheureuse Jeanne d'Arc, meaning  "blessed Joan of Arc." My French is a bit wonky, but that much I do know. Let's look at the other button. Napoleon's a faux gold coin, framed in rootbeer Bakelite and stamped with the words Napoleon Empereur III 1861. I've researched French coinage and this is an inexact replica of similar coins from the mid-1800's. I've had these buttons for years now and have saved them for a special French occasion, so here's to France and here's to world peace. Joyeux Noël.

-Sherbert McGee

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Crimson Leaf


A little darker than your typical cherry red button, this absolutely stunning find is more of a Spanish red or cardinal-crimson. The make is Bakelite and check out the carvings! A giant leaf juts very elegantly against a textured motif. Moreover, this is a big button made for a smart coatprobably dating back to the 1930's. I LOVE red Bakelite and this major beauty packs a jaw-dropping wallop.

Visit Doreen's online store:
BUTTONS FROM THE ATTIC 

-Sherbert McGee