The i-TOP

I mentioned this great tool in yesterday's post and thought I would share a bit more about it today. 


While I was at Market in Houston this past fall, we did the "designer pillow" presentation for the MODA schoolhouse. It was a packed house and we had to do the presentations twice to accomodate all of our wonderful customers who wanted a sneak peek at what we were up to. We felt a little silly repeating all the stories twice, but it was fun.

After we returned to our booth with our little button pillow in hand, it seemed that every few minutes someone would come by and ask us if we had used the i-TOP for the pillow. At first we just politely told people that we used standard covered button kits but it didn't take long for us to become intrigued by this new tool that everyone kept asking us about.

Button piloow

Well, it turns out that we could have been doing sales for the i-TOP team because so many people were excited about it and doubly excited after they saw the fun use of buttons on our button pillow.

Needless to say, the i-TOP team graciously gave us a tool to play with and we have been having fun with it ever since. The buttons on those Sit Upons I mentioned a few posts ago? All done with the i-TOP. And this pillow too. And a few other upcoming projects.


1. Cut out a circle of fabric according to the package instructions. To be honest, I usually eyeball it after a couple but you should probably start with the guide to get yourself started.


You can use the i-TOP buttons forms or any of the standard button forms available at craft and quilt shops. This versatility is one of the things I like most about it. It accommodates several sizes of buttons and I hear that they are in the midst of a remodel to accommodate even more sizes. The new i-TOP will be available late Spring.

Here we are using the 7/8" button forms from our local quilt shop.


2. Snap the larger side of the tool out so that it is facing toward you [[it just releases if you pull and makes it effortless to turn around 180 degrees]. Place the circle on the top of the side of the i-TOP tool that matches the size of button you are using. In this case that is the larger side.


3. Make sure that your fabric circle is centered and push the fabric down with the metal button form, placing & pushing it down into the inside of the tool.

Make sure that you kind of gather or push the fabric into the center with your fingers if it doesn't want to do it on its own as shown in the above pic. The fabric needs to be slightly "tucked" in as shown above before the next step.

You can also use the smaller pink side to do this if you like [that will work if you are doing a bigger button like we are here but not vice versa if you are doing a tiny button].


4. Place the button cover on top of the "squished" fabric. 


5. Now for the fun part. Pop the tool up [it just releases if you pull and makes it effortless to turn around 180 degrees] and over so that it is now facing inside the way it was when you opened the package. The 2 sides should be facing each other like shown here. Press the 2 sides together lightly. 



6. Voila. 



7. Snap the button out and do it again and again…. and again!



If you would like an i-TOP of your own, we have some available here. Once they sell out, we will also be carrying the new models in late Spring.

If you haven't already, make sure you to and comment on yesterday's post to be entered in all the fun giveaways. And follow along on the PILLOW TALK BLOG TOUR to all the remaining designers too!


Talk to you soon.

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  1. Marcia Kosturock | 7th Feb 11

    Oh you make it look SO easy. I am thinking my couch would look nice with some lovely pillows.. and I have a nice bay window with (naked) seating that needs some cushions.. hmmm.. the ideas are flowing.

  2. Robin(RsIslandCrafts) | 7th Feb 11

    That does look so easy! I love covered buttons on pillows. Plus, they would work nicely for stuffed creatures (for big kids of course). This tool reminds me of the snap tool I have. Love simple tools that give wonderful results.

  3. Loris Mills | 7th Feb 11

    This is such a great little tool. Looks like people will be making up excuses to put buttons on things just to use it. Pillows are first on the list!
    Thanks for the chance to win one 🙂

  4. Loris Mills | 7th Feb 11

    oops! mistook this for the giveaway post…sorry.

  5. Stacey | 7th Feb 11

    those are super cute!!

  6. Sandy (Strlady) | 7th Feb 11

    Talk about taking the pain out of making those little buttons! I’m not the most coordinated and this seems to be klutz friendly!

  7. Sue | 7th Feb 11

    That looks pretty amazing. Do you think those buttons would be washable if I use washable fabric?

  8. Cigdem | 7th Feb 11

    This is a great tool…Thanks for the chance to win one 🙂

  9. Rene' Allison | 7th Feb 11

    This would make the chore so much easier. Can’t wait to get one.

  10. Maureen | 7th Feb 11

    This looks like a fun and easy way to make unique buttons. It would be great to win.

  11. Doe | 7th Feb 11

    Will definitely look at the new model in April. Looks like it takes the pain out of lining everything up. Thanks for sharing!

  12. Jeanne | 7th Feb 11

    Oooh! That looks like way too much fun!

  13. Joanne | 7th Feb 11

    this looks great! I just love the pillow you made…
    and I think this tool will be much better than using the little kits from craft shops…I like that you can do several different sizes with the same tool

  14. Melanie Moraites | 7th Feb 11

    What a great little tool! I love buttons and the i Tool makes it look so easy to cover your own. Thanks for the chance to win.

  15. Holly T. | 7th Feb 11

    oh, that looks like it could be a lot of fun making buttons to match dresses for my little princess. I am going to have to look around for that.

  16. Joan | 7th Feb 11

    Wow, that is so cool . The buttons come out perfect.

  17. Amy | 7th Feb 11

    no more having to make do with the buttons you can find, now you can get exactly what you want! Love it, want it!

  18. sheri | 7th Feb 11

    If I had this tool I would transfer photos to fabric and make button bracelets! Sheri

  19. ~Kathleen | 7th Feb 11

    What a great tutorial for making such cute and easy buttons! Thank you.

  20. Bonnie Nyquist | 7th Feb 11

    I love what you have done using that tool! I love the chair cushions also, that would be so handy. Love all you do!

  21. Sandy G | 7th Feb 11

    Gotta get that women tool, in pink no less!

  22. Jansie | 7th Feb 11

    I absolutely love this. Cannot wait to get one. Will probably wait for the revamped one.

  23. Ellen | 7th Feb 11

    love, love, love it…it looks so easy. I would really like one, hoepfully I will win….

  24. Monique | 7th Feb 11

    Wow… what a great tool this is! I am just a learner in the world of quilts and other handcrafts, but I am on the right track I think. This tool is a handy helper!

  25. Melanie Moraites | 8th Feb 11

    What a great little gadget! You make it look so easy. The buttons on your pillow are adorable. Makes me want to try it myself. Only attempted making them once and it was frustrating, but this gadget makes it look like fun.

  26. Sue Bennett | 8th Feb 11

    WOW, I love that tool. I hate making covered buttons but those look so easy. Thanks for posting this.

  27. Carol M | 8th Feb 11

    What a great tool! It looks like an easy task with with it. Thanks for sharing.

  28. Marcia W. | 8th Feb 11

    I like the look of the covered buttons on pillows more than regular buttons. Thanks for the opportunity to win this gadget and the tutorial for using it. alternate email mlwright29 (at) hotmail (dotcom)

  29. Becky | 8th Feb 11

    oh cool! What a fantastic (and useful) tool!

  30. Ariane | 8th Feb 11

    That is so neat!! Thanks for the little tutorial. I would love to have one of these.

  31. | 8th Feb 11

    Very neat. Doesn’t look like my hands would be aching after awhile either!

  32. Judy C in NC | 8th Feb 11

    I sure hope that you will let us all know when the new one is available. This is a “must have” tool.

  33. janita | 8th Feb 11

    I want one just because it is pink and cute:) Love covered buttons… a matter of fact I just love any kind of button! Thanks for the low down! very cute pillow. I think I need one in valentine colors.

    Have a wonderful day!

  34. cori | 8th Feb 11

    I make clothes. And I always have a hard time looking for just the right buttons. Now I will be able to make them. Thanks for showing

  35. SarahB | 8th Feb 11

    What a handy little tool! I hadn’t heard of it before but I think if I had one I’ve be making covered buttons all the time!

  36. Carol | 8th Feb 11

    Neat! Definitely a handy gadget if you make buttons – would be good for your tufted pillow. I like to put buttons on my purses and this would be great for custom buttons.

  37. Kat | 8th Feb 11

    It looks so simple and handy.
    not worry too found the right button.
    and you are sure you want to give it away? 😉
    I sign up !!


  38. Erica K | 8th Feb 11

    You know…I’m going to have to try this with fabric. We used them at the CKC (scrapbook convention) with paper, and it was less-than successful. But fabric is more forgiving, and I shred my poor fingers using the normal ones. Yes, I need one now! 😀

  39. Judith Blinkenberg | 8th Feb 11

    Oh thank you. I would like one of the newer ones to see if there is a change. If you give one away I would love to make your chair cushion!

  40. VickiT | 8th Feb 11

    I had seen this tool awhile back and already knew I wanted one. Of course YOU just reinforced that thought by showing all the gorgeous buttons on your pillow. 🙂

  41. | 8th Feb 11

    I love love gadgets, I really want this one for my inventory, thanks for the tutorial and chance to win one, very generous.

  42. Patricia | 8th Feb 11

    What a great tool! I’ll certanly want one of these, semed to make the job so much easy…and fun!

  43. Jennifer | 8th Feb 11

    What a handy little tool!

  44. Dee | 9th Feb 11

    Now that looks like a fun tool to have. So many cute buttons can be added. Pick me.. I’ll put it to good use.
    Thanks for the opportunity to win one and also to Moda for the fabric giveaway…Color choice.. I love them all!

  45. Jill McIntosh | 9th Feb 11

    When there is an easy tool to use like this, I know that I will be making covered buttons galore!

  46. WendyMT | 9th Feb 11

    oh boy … the projects that would just have to be embellished with one of these tools!!! 🙂

  47. Stina | 9th Feb 11

    Haven’t seen anything like this before… not inSweden anyway!
    Seems like a LOT OF FUN!!!!!!
    and pretty!

  48. Phyllis | 9th Feb 11

    What a great tool. I’m going to get myself one as soon as I am done posting! I also love all of your pillows that I’ve seen!

  49. Susan Ikin | 9th Feb 11

    I love that you can use the self cover button forms with this too – nice tutorial. Thanks for the chance to win one.

  50. Marianne | 10th Feb 11

    It’s about time that this was invented! Certainly looks like a difficult job made a lot easier.

  51. Carol | 11th Feb 11

    Love gadgets!! How big a button does it accommodate>

  52. Letty | 11th Feb 11

    Pretty snazzy! I want one of course!

  53. Karen Kijinski | 11th Feb 11

    love the i-Top. what a great way to cover buttons.

  54. Debbie | 13th Feb 11

    Wow what a fantastic gadget, I definately need one of those.

  55. Amy | 13th Feb 11

    This tool would be a must if you are covering a lot of buttons! Please count me in the draw!

  56. Lois Martin | 14th Feb 11

    THis gadget would sure make buttons easy!!!

  57. Anne | 14th Feb 11

    Oh no, The I-Top is out of stock. I would love to win this and would go to town making pillows for my daughters apartment! Thanks for sharing about this gadget.

  58. Debbie Hays | 14th Feb 11

    So far I have loved your pillow the best. All of them have been so creative, but I am a sucker for covered buttons! Thanks for sharing so much with all of us! Happy Valentine’s Day!

  59. Ladybug | 14th Feb 11

    I think I’m going to have to get one of these once the new model is out.

  60. Jeanne Langston | 14th Feb 11

    What a wonderful tool! I’ll be putting buttons on everything! Thank you for the opportunity to win one!

  61. Beth T. | 14th Feb 11

    If I had one of these, I wouldn’t just gaze longingly at all of those cute, button-y projects I see, I’d get busy putting buttons on everything!

  62. Joy | 14th Feb 11

    This tool is fabulous! Thanks for the tutorial…and the giveaway!

  63. NANCY DAVIS | 15th Feb 11

    This will definately be an addition to my sewing room. Thanks so much for the info!!!!

  64. Sharon S | 15th Feb 11

    Where has this tool been all my life? This will make covered buttons so much easier!

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