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94/114/1 Collection of buttons (16), metal, designed and made by Gordon Andrews, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1945-1949. Click to enlarge.

Collection of buttons by Gordon Andrews

Designed by Andrews, Gordon
3 x square, concave shaped button in silver sheet with central cross motif in applied copper wire, signed 'Andrews'. Plus one unsigned square, concave shaped button in silver sheet with central cross motif in applied copper wire (attributed to Gordon Andrews by D. Broughton, despite variations from the three signed buttons).
3 x button of conical spiral form, in copper wire.
3 x flat, spiral shaped button in copper.
4 x rectangular, concave shaped button in copper with a strip of wire centrally applied.
1 x square shaped button in copper sheet, the obverse surface with engraved image of a sailing ship on water.
1 x button in copper sheet, circular shaped with domical centre.

Summary

Object No.

94/114/1

Object Statement

Collection of buttons (16), metal, designed and made by Gordon Andrews, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1945-1949

Physical Description

3 x square, concave shaped button in silver sheet with central cross motif in applied copper wire, signed 'Andrews'. Plus one unsigned square, concave shaped button in silver sheet with central cross motif in applied copper wire (attributed to Gordon Andrews by D. Broughton, despite variations from the three signed buttons).
3 x button of conical spiral form, in copper wire.
3 x flat, spiral shaped button in copper.
4 x rectangular, concave shaped button in copper with a strip of wire centrally applied.
1 x square shaped button in copper sheet, the obverse surface with engraved image of a sailing ship on water.
1 x button in copper sheet, circular shaped with domical centre.

Dimensions

Height

12 mm

Width

32 mm

Depth

32 mm

Production

Made

Andrews, Gordon 1945-1949

Notes

Gordon Andrews began making buttons while convalescing after a serious illness in the 1940s. Andrews recalls he got the idea from fashion artist Beryl Hartland, who complained about the lack of well designed buttons on the local market.

Andrews began by hammering out pennies but then extended in metal sheet and wire. According to Andrews it became such a profitable exercise that by the late 1940s it looked as if he might become 'the button king' of Sydney.

History

Notes

Marion Hall Best was one of Australia's most daring and inventive interior designers, her career spanning the years 1938-1974. Marion's daughter Deirdre Broughton, the donor, thinks that the buttons were originally acquired for sale through one of her mother's shops. These buttons were subsequently used by both Marion and Deirdre on various items of clothing.

Un unsourcd newspaper cutting titled 'Artist's Buttons' of 13 March 1948 notes:
'No cutting dies or devices such as gilding are used. Each is hand wrought, and Mr Andrews spends up to two or three hours fashioning a set of four buttons.'
'Each button has it's own name. Among them are 'Beehive', a copper and silver spiral button; 'Crusader', silver with a copper cross in the centre; and 'Birdeye' spiralled copper with a tiny pewter point or eye.'

Source

Credit Line

Gift of Mrs Deirdre Broughton, 1994

Acquisition Date

16 May 1994

Cite this Object

Harvard

Collection of buttons by Gordon Andrews 2020, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 4 August 2020, <https://ma.as/138047>

Wikipedia

{{cite web |url=https://ma.as/138047 |title=Collection of buttons by Gordon Andrews |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=4 August 2020 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}

Incomplete

This object record is currently incomplete. Other information may exist in a non-digital form. The Museum continues to update and add new research to collection records.

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