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Suit Buttons as opposed to Shirt Buttons

amirrorcrackd

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There is a lot of talk about shirt buttons, and a lot of emphasis about MOP vs. plastic, but no one ever talks about suit buttons. So, what's the consensus on this? What should they be made of (horn?) are some made of plastic (assume on cheaper suits they are), and how does one tell the difference?

Thanks,

Dan
 

Alexander Kabbaz

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Anderson's proclivities aside, I vote for horn. Why? Because I'm an old fart and I revere tradition. Because there is no way to imitate in plastic the look, the 'every one is different' uniqueness of natural buttons. Because it just feels ... right.
How can you tell the difference? Plastic melts; horn burns. Same with M.O.P. Plastic melts; M.O.P. giggles at fire.
 

RJman

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Suit buttons are also sometimes made from other natural materials like corozo or tagua nut. Even if a suit has real horn buttons they are often dyed to match the color of the suit.
 

Alias

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Sometimes it's very hard to tell whether or not a button is horn or plastic, without subjecting it to fire. My overcoat has black, shiny buttons that I always thought were plastic until I looked at them very, very closely. The backs had patterns not unlike the rings of a tree trunk, and the fronts had little tiny pits and pockmarks indicating a natural material. Plastic, on the other hand, doesn't have that kind of "grain" and is perfectly smooth and glossy.

But yeah, I usually look for those little signs. On most horn buttons I've encountered, the ones that haven't been dyed straight black, the buttons have a little wisp of white near the holes.
 

Manton

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If you look very closely at the button, and there is a minute seam running around the circumference of the button's outer edge, that is a sure sign that the button is plastic.
 

amirrorcrackd

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Well, I'm off to burn some suits. Silly manufacturers think they can fool me with plastic buttons. Well soon enough I'll know if they were plastic or not, and then who'll be laughing? Eh.?.

Dan
 

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