How to Sew a ButtonHole -2023

How to Sew a ButtonHole (Last Updated On: October 24, 2022)

For many, knowing how to sew a buttonhole seems the most challenging task to learn.

Whereas the buttonhole, a part of your shirt, pants, and coats that are more important than you think. For someone who is looking for a career in dressmaking or someone who wants to learn sewing needs to know the importance of a buttonhole.

How to Sew a ButtonHole

When you work for a client, they will have a demand for a buttonhole in their clothes, and that is something that you can not ignore or deny. I am saying all this because for sewers, sewing a buttonhole can be difficult. It needs practice from both a machine and by hand.

It is a question considered crucial when you are about to sew a buttonhole, should you do it by hand or just by a machine.

Indeed, the outcomes you achieve are slightly different in both cases. As there comes a lot of sewing machines that give you the option of automatically sewing a buttonhole where you do not have to do that much, and the result is quite subtle, but not everyone has these modern sewing machines.

What is most important is that you do not have to buy an expensive automatic machine because you do not know just one craft. If you look into it, sewing by hand or by a non-automatic machine is not that difficult.

All it requires from you is a bit of practice. So do not worry, we will give it a try for the sake of your learning.

Things you need to sew a buttonhole

It seems a small task, but it depends on who is performing it. But what remains the same are the things you need actually to complete the task.

As you know, we will be touching different ways of sewing it (by hand or by machine), so these things may vary in different takes. Let’s look at them


  • A sewing machine
  • Any type of button
  • Buttonhole foot
  • Piece of fabric on which the process will be performed
  • The thread of the color matching the color of the fabric
  • A needle when sewing by hand
  • Seam rippers
  • Scissors
  • Pen for making marks on the fabric


Preparation before sewing

And it involves some sort of the whole process to follow and streamlining how to sew a buttonhole.

Interfacing the buttonhole

Interfacing gives you relief from the usual problem that some amateurs face. It provides exceptional stability to the fabric so that you create a perfect buttonhole. With that, all you need to do is to place a lightweight cloth on the opposite side of the material. Use fusible interfacing if the buttonhole is being implemented on a woven fabric.

Positioning the button

It is crucial that you know the measurement of your button and let the machine know as well. Do it by placing it on the fabric and marking both ends on the fabric by a marker.

A rule which is used everywhere is that the buttonhole is made eight of an inch longer than the exact size of the button so that the button can go in and out pretty quickly.

You can use a ruler to mark the button. The position of the buttonhole can be either vertical or horizontal because both types of buttonholes are used for different kinds of clothing.


The machine

It is better if you use the thread from the spool on the top of the machine, not from the bobbin. And make sure that you have a whole reel on top because it can be very frustrating if the spindle runs out of fabric in the middle of the process.

You can use any type of buttonhole foot that is available. You can use the zig-zag foot or any other. If you have an automatic machine, you do not need to measure a buttonhole every time as it remembers your size and helps you instantly.

In other machines, you can use a buttonhole foot in which you place the button and sew it according to its size.

Now that’s about it, let’s get to the fun part where we sew the buttonhole. We have taken this article into three sections to give you an in-depth look at sewing a buttonhole using three different types of methods.


How to effectively sew a buttonhole

And it involves a good long process to effectively do the buttonhole sewing for an expert to novice.

Doing by hand

When you pick up a needle and start doing it yourself, issues may arrive, but mostly you do not have a choice. You sew a buttonhole by hand when you do not have a sewing machine with a buttonhole capability, or you just do not have a sewing machine at all. Or it is a customer requirement, or you wish to do it. All these scenarios make you sew a buttonhole all by yourself.

All you need is what you require when sewing anything by hand: a needle, thread and fabric, and some others like interfacing and a marker. The first thing you got and need to do is to interface the fabric for its increased stability.

You do it by placing the interface on the wrong side of the fabric. After stabilizing the fabric, place the actual button on to the fabric and mark both ends of the button, remember that the markings of the switch need to be at eight of an inch longer than the actual length of the button.

Now take the marker and create a stitching line around the marked region. This stitching line will be in rectangle, and this will be the line on which you will stitch your buttonhole. The length of the square is up to you how much more full your stitches should be. Cut the fabric cutter and cut the marked line, which represents the size of the button.

Now when you are done with it, get a threaded needle and sew it through the wrong side of the fabric, as the needle comes back up take it all out along the thread and then take the needle back in through the hole that you cut earlier just a bit that you come back out from where the first thread came out.

Before pulling the needle all-out, take the remaining thread (not from the needle’s end), run it through underneath the front part of the needle, hold the thread with your hand, and then take out the whole needle, and this will result in a thread knot.

Now again, take the sewing needle through the hole that you cut and take it out from the rectangle market, but make sure that you take it out as close to the previous stitch. It is again going to go underneath the needle and hold it with the thumb and then just take the needle all out, and it makes another knot as it makes another stitch.

Keep repeating this process, and you will start to see the buttonhole take shape. When your buttonhole is created for the first time, you might notice that it does not look as perfect as the one done with a sewing machine. So keep practicing as it requires a lot of it.


With a non-automatic sewing machine

A sewing machine might have many specialties, but if it does not have an automatic buttonhole, it might take away a lot from the user who does not want to get into the whole mess of making a buttonhole. But it isn’t that difficult as we will take you through the four essential steps of making the buttonhole.

The start is quite the same as you do the interfacing on the fabric and mark the buttonhole’s length with a marker. Fix the buttonhole foot on to the machine. The stabilized fabric is placed under the machine in a way that the needle touches the top edge of the marker.

Remember when the machine is making the buttonhole, never try to play with the fabric. It will ruin your buttonhole. All you need to check is the stitches aligned or not. Now select the first set of the buttonhole from the machine and start sewing. When the stitches come to the second end of the marker, change the setting to the bar tack.

Erase the needle from the fabric before changing the setting because the needle moves around. Now start sewing again and stitch the bar tack on the first end.

Now again, remove the needle from the fabric and change it to the third buttonhole setting. Start sewing, and this time the machine will stitch the buttonhole backward. You do not need to do much right now because the machine will do it for you.

On the fourth step, you go back to the bar tack and sew the last end to complete the buttonhole. After the buttonhole is completed, take the remaining thread and take it out from the back and make a knot. Use a seam ripper to open the buttonhole.

By an automatic sewing machine

Automatic sewing machines bring a lot to the table; one of those things is its capability to make a buttonhole automatically. Let’s look at the things that you have to do and the things the machine does for you.

First, you need to stabilize your fabric and then mark it with a fabric marker. The next thing is to take your automatic buttonhole foot that might come with the machine and fix it on it.

When it’s fixed, try the button for which you want to make a buttonhole on the buttonhole foot. There is an area of placement on the buttonhole foot, and it has a sensor that senses the size of the button and sews the buttonhole, respectively.

Now place the fabric under the machine—Takedown the lever which holds the automatic buttonhole foot. The fabric should be placed in such a way that the sewing needle size is aligned with the marked lines on the fabric.

After that, select the buttonhole type from the machine. The machine these days has a lot of varieties when it comes to buttonholes. Select the one you desire, which is usually the square buttonhole. The screen on the machine will guide you through it.

As everything is ready, you press start, and the machine starts sewing. You can also use a foot controller to control the buttonhole foot or just stick to the buttons. The machine will start sewing the buttonhole from one side to the next until all four sides are done. You do not have to do anything, and if you want to do another one, just lift the buttonhole foot, slide the fabric to the next point, and start sewing.

Conclusion of how to sew a buttonhole

The three types of buttonholes shown above have the following. The buttonhole that is made from hand might look hard at first, and the result might not even look that good, but with practice, it can match up to the best of the buttonholes out there.

There will always be a difference between buttonholes that are made from different devices. It does not mean that one isn’t right, and the other is. It is the preference of the people, what type of buttonhole do they want.

So, that simplifies how to sew a buttonhole using different practices making the novice to get done with the task effectively and with utmost efficiency NOW.

How to Sew a ButtonHol

How to Sew a ButtonHoleSewing Needle Sizes

Click to rate this post!
[Total: 0 Average: 0]

How useful was this post?

Click on a star to rate it!

Average rating 0 / 5. Vote count: 0

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this post.

You May Also Like

About the Author: aarsheikh

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *