Friday, April 30, 2004

I revamped my site. Now there are art buttons for sale and grab bags, just in case you're crusing for a deal. I also added a sales section in which special offers and auctions will be advertised. Of course, there are new buttons in the black pride, and bleeding hearts sections of the site.

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

On Resolution

300 DPI is the recommended resolution for button making, but it'll take a bit of fiddling before one figures out how to get them to print at the desired size.(at least it did for me, you readers may be on top of things) The way I finally figured it out is (I use the GIMP) adjust the pixels per inch first, then figure out how many pixels are needed to be the number of inches I need. I guess this sounds basic, and is in fact probably doesn't work on many graphics programs that don't tell how many inches something will print out at, but I recognize that not everyone is at the same level, and maybe others will feel helped by this silly tibit. I find that 800 pixels is good for 2 inchers, and 400 is good for 1 inchers, but your mileage may vary.

Monday, April 26, 2004

The Philosophy of Button Making

Button making for business or pleasure- one of the most important things to think about as a button maker is whether you're doing it for fun or profit. Only you can decide whether you'd rather make buttons that only promote your own beliefs, or whatever makes the most profit. More on this later.

Saturday, April 24, 2004

On Auction Whoring

I'm auctioning off four buttons based on Ruben's 4 Negro Heads. 1 inchers all. Come in and look! Also, on the more practical side, here is a link about resolution, which is an important thing to keep in mind for those printing out more photographic buttons.

Friday, April 23, 2004

Cassowary News

My site, Cassowary Buttons, has undergone an overhaul. There's a new look, and shopping has been made easier. There is also a new geek buttons section, and new buttons in the political and naughty buttons section. Enjoy!

Thursday, April 22, 2004

Random Button Thoughts

I seem to end up with better buttons in the morning. Whether that has to do with general energy levels or just some strange fluke, I do not know.

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Button Shop Review

Titancia's Buttons- Overall a fairly well organized site. There are custom buttons and premade buttons, which are 1 inch and $1 each. Navigation is pretty straight forward- although the words buttons should be divided up by subject manner, otherwise, this site offers a variety of buttons from fairy buttons to buttons about the joys of being vegetarian. Overall, a cute site.

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

On Changing Your Mind

I've decided to make this blog my site's official blog. I'll still have tips and tricks, button store reviews, and button making thoughts, but I'll also advertise specials and new buttons.
On Button Makers

As I have said before, the machine you need for button making varies with your need. If you're only going to be making five buttons ever, a plastic handheld one should be fine. But for selling purposes, I'm starting to think a metal one would be better. The downside is that the lowest one can find is $150. But the high failure rates and slow workings of a handheld will constrain you, and that's how you know it's time for another button maker.

Monday, April 19, 2004

A Plug

I'll try to keep the plugs to a minimum, but I do have a buttons site. I am having a special sale on defective buttons- buttons that still pin, but may not be sealed all the way around, or something. 25 cents each. To keep this useful, I'll note that it's fairly hard to avoid defectives on a handheld button machine. I hope to upgrade soon.
Tips and Tricks

Slogans are always a popular thing to put on buttons. But there is an art to creating good slogans.

1)Keep it short and snappy. You want people to be able to read the buttons.

2)Parody is good, but hard to do.

3)Revise, revise, revise- sometimes the first thing you think up isn't the funniest

4)Keep a notepad for ideas.

5)If you want a picture with a slogan, make it so you can read both the slogan and make out the picture.

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Button Shop Review

I will review button shops to cover the button making web. Today's review is is one of the most popular sites. It offers buttons which are usually around 1 inch to 1 3/4 inches, with the occasional two inch button. I have ordered before, and they seem fine to me, but I'm not a button expert. It is a bit pricy- $2 for 1 inch buttons? But since they are so popular, I guess they can charge that much. Slogans tend to be leftist, starting with atheist slogans, but going into prochoice, anti Republican and pagan slogans.

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

Tips and Tricks

Although I am just starting out, this is the internet, so of course, I feel qualified to tell other people tips and tricks about button making. Of course, this is not absolute, jump in, with a tip on the comments, you know? The badge a minit handheld button makers seem to have a sweet spot near the end of the handle. I can tell because I can feel the button being pressed together. When I use that sweet spot, I seem to get less defectives.

Monday, April 12, 2004

Button Making For Beginners

Where do I get images?

There are dozens of places to get images for buttons. Photos of friends and family, drawings you have created, designs purchased from others, graphics and text created in graphics programs. I'd like to advise caution in using copyrighted images for buttons to sell, especially on eBay. It's best to err on the side of caution. About copyright- just because it's on the internet does not mean it is public domain, copyright terms have been extended to 70 years recently also. Anyway, it's more creative to use something unique than the same overused stars.

Photos: Don't use an irreplaceable photo for your button. Make a copy of it, and then cut the copy to size.

Graphics Programs: There are many programs available- Adobe Photoshop, and the GIMP being the most popular. I personally prefer the GIMP as it is truly free. Of course, it's all made by amateurs, so sometimes it is a bit wonky.

Handdrawn: Make a copy of your drawing, perhaps scanning it and then printing it out before using it to make a button.

Remember that the images have to be the right size, too. Usually buttons are one to two inches in diameter.

Sunday, April 11, 2004

Button Making for Beginners

My button making for beginners posts will be all about the basics of button making for people who want to give it a try. What tools are needed, where to get them, and how to use them once you get them are topics that will be covered. Today's post is how to choose a button maker.

To make buttons, you need a button maker. It can be anything from a handheld one to a fully automatic one. It all depends on what you want to do- share buttons with family and friends, start a business, or promote a special event. If you just want to share with your family, or even just start a small business, going for the high end $600 button maker might not be the best bet.
Handheld button makers are cheapest, but are more difficult for people with low hand strength, and may turn out defectives more often.
Bench button makers are standalone button makers that you push down on a plunger or handle to create the button.
Automatic button makers do not require pushing a plunger and instead are 'push button' systems. Bench and Automatic systems make it easier to make more buttons faster, but they are more expensive.

There are many different manufacturers, including Badge a Minit, Dr. Don's Buttons, USA Buttons Button Biz and many more. I personally use Badge a Minit, but there are many other brands out there.

Saturday, April 10, 2004

Welcome to Button Maker's Ball. This blog is for button makers and button lovers of all types. I'll write about button making tips and interesting button related developments.