Buttons, Badges & Pins - People Power Blog

Celebrating Our Favourite Moments in Text on World Book and Copyright Day April 20 2018

Words on the page have the power to take us out of our daily lives and into other fantastic worlds. Other media can excite us too, but books hold a special place here for us and maybe you too.

In honour of World Book and Copyright Day and the corresponding Canada Book Day, both taking place on April 23, we have put some of our favourite book moments onto buttons.

UNESCO World Book Day Canada 2018 Harry Potter

Seeing them again instantly brings the magic of the entire story back. Can you tell what books the passages on the buttons are from? Head over to our Instagram and Facebook pages to leave your guesses. The first to comment with the correct answer gets the button!

We'd also really like to know what you are reading right now! We are always looking for recommendations. Some of our button makers love a good audiobook to keep them company as they press custom button orders!

And of course, if you have a favourite passage from a favourite book, why don't you put it on a button or other custom product like a fridge magnet, coaster, mirror or keychain? So many page-turning possibilities. We'd be happy to help! 

 

      

 

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DIY Inspiration: Fine Gentleman Upcycled Vintage Collage Fridge Magnets April 17 2018

Collaged from vintage advertisements, these Fine Gentlemen Fridge Magnets are not only handsome, but practical too! 

Hand pressed on a 2" x 3" Rectangle button maker, these magnets will effortlessly hold up to 5 pieces of paper on your fridge, locker, or magnetic surface of your choosing. 

Hand Made Fridge Magnet Inspiration DIY Collage

You can get your hands on this magnet collection in store, or let them inspire you to make some collage magnets of your own!

Some tips for collaging on buttons or magnets:

  1. Don't collage heavily around the edges because it can interfere with successfully pressing the magnet on a hand press
  2. Use printer paper or similarly weighted paper for your magnets, as thicker papers tends to get jammed (especially if you're layering!)
  3. Let glue or other adhesives dry completely before pressing 
  4. Have fun and happy making!

If you love to collage, here's another post that you might enjoy:

  1.  Great Ideas: Collage Buttons!
  2.  How to Avoid Button Maker Jams 
  3.  1" Buttons with Colourful Custom Collages: Sales the Band

 

   

 

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Introducing Pawsome and Purrfect Postcard & Button Craft Packs April 10 2018

If you are a lover of dogs or cats and love a good pun, we have made a new craft project pack that might just be your thing. 

The Pawsome Pack and Purrfect Pack include postcards for you to colour along with matching punny animal pins. These have adorable positive messages so the idea is that you can send someone a fun and positive message if they need a pick-me-up or just because you were thinking of them. 

Pin-Buttons-Gift-For-Cat-Lovers

 

This is a great kid's craft project to keep little hands busy while also practicing kindness for others. 

Messages include "Stay Pawsitive!" and "I am Totally Pawsome!" Kind of adorable, right?

These new DIY craft packs are available in store at our Toronto location in the Junction neighbourhood or can be purchased online. Included are 2 x 2-1/4" round buttons and 2 x Colouring Postcards. Choose from the cat version or the dog version

 

Gift-For-Dog-Lover-Colouring-Craft-for-Kids

So go ahead, let someone in your life know just how pawsome they are, even when times are ruff! Okay, we are done being (hilariously) punny now...!

But... if you really are digging the animal puns, we do have a few more animal pun buttons this way

 

   

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Get Your Paws on these Animal Pun Pins! April 09 2018

Whale Hello There!

If you could be any animal in the world, what would you be? Whatever it is, I'm sure its TOADally rad :)

This hilarious pinback button collection features a slew of animals and terrible animal puns that we hope you'll love! 

Funny Animal Pun Pinback Buttons Unique Gift Idea Toronto

You can get your paws on these pins by dropping by our storefront in The Junction, or get in touch with us and order online or over the phone :) 

If you've thought up of a laughter-inducing pun, why not get your own run of custom pun buttons? Click here to order custom buttons of every size and shape! 

 

   

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Pins for Toronto Horror Web Series Winterbourne April 06 2018

If you are looking for something to really good to watch that may also keep you up at night, you should stay tuned for the upcoming horror web series Winterbourne

toronto custom buttons horror series Winterbourne

The horror web anthology consists of nine episodes inspired by Robert W. Chambers' The King in Yellow. Taking place in the town of Winterbourne, the series follows the supernatural experiences of the community's residents.

A special premiere will be held on April 12th at Toronto's Carlton Cinema. 

If you can't wait for the series to start - like us - then you can check out some 360-degree short videos on the Winterbourne YouTube channel. Check out the teaser video below for just a hint of what the series will include.

Winterbourne is created by Stained Glass Media, an all-female production company dedicated to creating diverse and accessible high quality entertainment. The nine women behind this terrifying series are fourth year Media Production Studies program from Toronto's Ryerson University. 

You can also get a great look behind the scenes by following along on social media. (Don't be fooled by all those smiling faces - this stuff is seriously spooky!)

Twitter: @Winterbourne_18
Facebook: @winterbourne2018
Instagram: @winterbourne2018
YouTube: Winterbourne: A Horror Anthology Series

This project has also included the production of some virtual reality episodes that fully immersed viewers in the Winterbourne experience. 

We made some custom round 1-1/2" buttons featuring the series logo. Some of these buttons will be sent out to supporters of Winterbourne, including people who helped fund their successful indiegogo campaign.

We are seriously thrilled to have come across this series and the team behind it. If you will be watching along with us, be sure to let us know what you think and share it with anyone else who wants to see what the future of Canadian media looks like. 

   

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Poisson D'Avril .... April Fools Day! April 01 2018

It's April 1st, and this year that means both April Fools day AND Easter!

 

Here's a wacky April Fool's Day tradition that we want to tell you about. "Poisson D'avril", also known as "April Fools",  is a joke made on April 1st of every year. In France, children try to stick a picture of a fish on their friends' back. When the joke is discovered, they shout "Poisson d'avril!" Ha!

Happy April Fool's Day from us folks at People Power Press!


April Fools Day

If you like jokes or puns, we have some other funny buttons in the shop.

Click through the links to browse more funny buttons and greeting cards in our collection :) 

 

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Guest Blog: Halifax School Expands Learning Experience with Button Making Maker Space March 29 2018

We have another guest blog from another award-winning teacher about how she has been using button making in the classroom. Laura Kennedy teaches at Sir Charles Tupper School in Halifax, Nova Scotia. 

Button, Button, Who’s Got the Button - We Do!

Makerspaces are expanding learning in so many ways in schools, community centres and public spaces. What seems like a new idea is actually an age old concept; a space to wonder, explore and create. Tinkering in the garage, puttering in the garden and mixing up batches of homemade goodness in the kitchen are all examples of makerspaces.

makerspace education

Automation certainly played a role in bettering the lives of many but it also came with a loss of ownership and connection to products. Now the indispensable had become dispensable. When something broke or added to the clutter, it was unceremoniously tossed away.

Not only is there a loss of pride in making something by your own two hands, but a larger problem was created; that of bulging landfills. Further a sense of diminished skills left people unaware of how to darn a sock, sew a button, wonder at the thought that bread could be ‘made.’

When we lose skills that help provide for ourselves and grow to rely on a conveyor belt to roll out not only the things we need but a myriad of completely unnecessary items, we lose a bit of ourselves. Our sense of purpose and confidence slips.

Over time we have realized that post-consumer waste is at a critical point so recycling programs have been implemented. This is a beginning reaction but will not serve as the most productive solution. Not buying products with multiple layers and types of packaging is the next step. Soon we realize that we can actually live without individually wrapped items or that toy that breaks in the first five minutes of playing with it.

#oneword school project maker space

Makerspaces Let Students Produce Their Own Learning Experience

Happily this is where makerspaces adds another solution. Everyday household items like paper tubes, boxes, plastic utensils, bottles and so forth become the fodder for wonderfully imaginative creations. This is the beginning of the process. After being inspired by random items, makers begin the process of, “I wonder if we could…,” or “If we took three of these and added it to…,” and “How could we use…. to…?” It’s the questions that naturally emerge in this environment that truly spark the inventing, the creating, the making of solutions.

The purpose in students choices, the way they problem solve around design features, the consultation with others to ultimately fist pumping the air in jubilation with every, “We did it,” and “It worked,” proves an engagement that reading from a text or filling out questions on a photocopy could never produce.

It is said that makerspaces are about ideas, not about equipment. True indeed, as if you don’t have ideas, all the things that light up and beep won’t be of any use. Technology serves to help us develop our ideas beyond what we could without these tools. Materials chosen to advance a project, skill or program helps the process develop into the product. This is the ultimate goal; to have learners develop their thinking through the various stages towards creating a final item. Becoming producers of their learning along the way develops the learning far beyond just being a consumer of information.

Enter my experience with makerspaces. I love tables full of bits and pieces, bric-a-brac, things and sundry! The opportunities are endless. I was excited to say the least when a makerspace was available as part of an Innovation in Technology conference. Gears and coding and buttons - Oh my!

Button Making as Part of Makerspaces

I was immediately drawn to the button maker and was happy to be guided through the process until I had the method down. I tiptoed in by making a button using the pre-made templates and had that ‘joy’ moment when it all clicked together.

making buttons in schools Canada

Ready to take on the next stage, ideas of how to customize my own button flooded my mind. I raced through the pictures I had on my computer were now platforms for humor, statements or just mere visuals. Ideas of how student voice could be recognized, collaborate on messages and demonstrate their interests came to mind as well. My mind raced to many add ons that could bring the button beyond a static object. I included a QR code to an image of my school added my Twitter handle and used that as my ‘business’ card of sorts. Linking it to our class or school website is an option as well.

Introducing Button Making in The Classroom

Happy to be supported by administration and local technology support liaisons, (Brilliantlabs.ca) we received a button maker and ample supplies to get us going. Well the glee that shrieked in the class was incredible. I think the students were happy too as I was too busy being the one shrieking! Materials create possibility and possibility creates opportunity.

We began by using a button template found on thebuttonguy.net, drawing a favorite item. A few missteps and a retreat to the directions helped to make the process go smoother. Labeling the parts of the button maker ensured that mistakes were fewer than before. You definitely learn as you go and understand what you need to fix and the new information is absorbed more readily because it is pertinent to what you are doing in the moment. It is long lasting learning and remains as permanent knowledge as you are able to see how to help others and know what is the cause of mistakes.

#OneWord2018, New Student Pins, Kindness Buttons and More...

classroom positive messages

We've had so much fun with the button maker so far making our own personal buttons, connected to our 2018 goal words, creating buttons for presenters, for our new primary students and most recently for kindergarten students in PEI to show them that their kindness to their fellow classmates was appreciated.

Students were happy to wear their buttons and share them with those at home. Beginning the new year, most turn to resolutions. The issue is that most are not kept or even thought of after the first few days. In this way, a more meaningful direction was pursued by way of a focus word. Following along with the #oneword2018, we all came up with a thought that resonated with each of us that could act as a direction.

We added these words to our Wonder-’full’ Wall of WOW words that we are collecting. The next logical step was to create buttons to keep our words close to our hearts. Guiding one student through the process while the next in line observed, students were able to upload their button image created with Google Draw to the online button designer to be ready to print out. Putting the final pieces together with the button maker takes a bit more hands on supervision as safety is one of the key features in any makerspace.

Connecting and Creating with Other Classrooms

Other classes are interested in learning from our experience and we are happy to share our expertise in this area. Joining forces with cross aged buddies only proves to strengthen our connections, creativity and communication

We're working on a connection with another class in our area to create pins using their pixel art drawings that they used when practicing multiplication facts. They'll upload them to a file, send them our way, we'll be the elves and courier them back. Not just a maker project but a way to begin a conversation with a class that is in our school board but a world away considering geography separates us.

Now isn’t that what the big picture goal is all about? Who knows - a button maker business could be in the works to spread awareness, positive messages and new designs!

button making schools Canada

Students Creating Their Own Button Opportunities

Students have created buttons for themselves with images that mean the most to them, have collaborated with those at home to create a family button and have maintained their focus on their #oneword2018 on a button.

Even with all that creativity, I think the most forward use of the button maker was by a student who chose to create a button for a guest speaker who visited our school. We were happy to welcome Canada’s first Explorer in Residence, Jill Heinerth. Research before she came led to many discoveries and students chose various mediums to display their information. One student added an “Explore” button to her project to add a personal touch that went above and beyond that material could ever reveal. Now that is where learning and creating come together to make long lasting memories.

Using Button Making in Professional Development with Other Staff, Teachers

Sharing the button maker with staff and other teachers during professional development sessions proved as productive as when the students were introduced to the machine. Ideas, interest and intrigue were all elements that occured during that moment of reveal when each button rolled off.

teachers button maker

Sharing the button maker with staff and a Masters level class at the local university had teachers making natural connections to ways they could incorporate it into their curriculum; reading list words, numbers, messages... and so much more.

Making one for themselves or family members came to mind first but quickly ideas of using buttons for high frequency words to support reading in the class came to mind. The conversations quickly turned to more possibilities and that is where the story actually begins…!

You can follow along with everything Laura Kennedy and her students are up to you can find them online on Twitter @Tupper1930 and @Lkennedy37.

If you are an educator and would like to introduce button making into your schools, please be in touch with us about what is involved. We will help walk you through the process!

Already have your own button maker and want to share your button making adventure with our readers? We'd love to hear from you! 

 

    

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Canadian Musicians Rock! Magnets Just in Time for The JUNO Awards March 26 2018

Did you watch the Juno Awards this past weekend? Did your favourite Canadian musicians take home the hardware? What were your favourite live performances from the 47th Annual Juno Awards held in Vancouver?

cool band merch Canada

We were feeling inspired so we have created a series of The Soundtrack of Canada Fridge Magnets. This new rounded rectangle magnet collection features just a few of the superstars that have come from this great country we call home. Look for hall of famers and current hitmakers.

modern canadian music stars

These are now available for purchase in our Toronto Junction store or for purchase online

Did we miss a CanCon act that you adore? Let us know so we can consider adding them to this collection.

Hall of Fame Juno musicians

Of course these designs can be made into the classic 1" band buttons. If you are a band, get your own custom band buttons so you too can be celebrated! Who knows, maybe there is a Juno award in your future. ; ) 

   

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Upcycle Inspiration: Pocket Mirrors made with Portraits from Vintage Books March 16 2018

We love the idea of upcycling and are always looking for ways to give new life to stuff with a little help from our button makers. So we've been at it again and love the result. Hope you do too!

 

Handmade Pocket Mirror Made with Button Machine Upcycled Vintage Book

We have lots of old library books here that we use to make upcycled notebooks, but what to do with the pages we remove from these books? Well, this time we collected images of women from vintage books to make fun and pretty pocket mirrors

Paired with blue velvet carrying bags something old instantly became new again - and practical, which is even better! 

Given the way they are made, we just have a few in our Toronto store. Each mirror is truly one of a kind so get yours before they disappear! This is a great item to carry in your bag so you can stay on top of your look on the go. 

Great Gift Idea for Mother's Day and Wedding Bridal Parties!

These vintage portrait pocket mirrors (with bag included) also make a great and affordable gift. Mother's Day will soon be here, hint hint. Wedding coming up? Custom mirrors make perfect and personal bridal party gifts. 

Upcycled Vintage Book Button Pocket Mirror Birth of Venus

What is Upcycling Anyway?

Upcycling is the process of finding creative ways to reuse stuff instead of throwing it away. You keep stuff out of the landfill longer while also reducing the need to create new items with new raw materials.

We cut out the image in the old books that were going to be discarded and pressed with mylar into the 2-1/4" round button maker. Supplies for pocket/purse mirrors are available in the following shapes and sizes:

Round - 2-1/4" / 2-1/2" / 3" / 3-1/2"

Oval - 1-3/4" x 2-3/4" 

Rectangle - 2" x 3" / 2-1/2" x 3-1/2" 

Don't have a button maker, but like the idea for a different image? We can make custom mirrors for you too, with or without the velvet drawstring bags. Or you can rent a button maker from our Toronto store to either make mirrors in our maker space or to take off site!

 

    

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Worth the Visit to Our Retail Button Store: Explore Toronto's Junction Neighbourhood March 14 2018

 

The Junction Best Neighborhood in Toronto Hidden Gem

While we ship buttons and button making supplies all over the world, we do have a storefront location in the fantastic Junction neighbourhood in Toronto's West End. 

If you are thinking about buying a button maker, it is always a bonus to come see all the machines we sell and be able to try them out before making a decision. Even if you have to travel from out of town, it really is worth the trip. First, for our wide selection of machines that can't be found anywhere else. And second, for the great neighbourhood of local businesses available to explore. 

Our shop is the go-to destination for people wanting to buy a button maker or get some custom buttons made. Customers have driven from as far as Quebec City, Sudbury and even Thunder Bay because they want to try out a few different kinds of machines and confidently walk out the door with the right button machine for their purpose.

Canada's only unique retail store for pinback buttons and DIY button making

We once even had someone fly in from Nigeria because this is the only shop in the world where you can try out different button making machines all in one place! No kidding!!

And we are lucky to call the Junction home so when you make the trip know that there are so many other cools places to visit here in one of Toronto's coolest neighbourhoods. 

There are 54 bars, cafes and restaurants within a 10 minute walk from our door. 

Just in our block alone, we are home to Hooked, a shop that was just voted Toronto's Best Fish Shop. We also have the local favourite independent coffee shop Crema right on the corner. 

In the warm months of the year, Ice Cream Junction is your classic ice cream parlour that is always overflowing with all ages. In winter months, it has been home to some awesome pop-up shops for other yummy businesses. This winter Little Havana Cafe has been stationed there offering their popular Cuban coffee and special treats like lunch go-to empanadas and a very rockin' coconut milk latte.  

We do also have to give a special shout out to our shop favourite take out lunch spot Dundas Pizza across the street. It is a no frills set-up but the pizza and wings always hit the spot. 

Take a walk a bit further along Dundas St. W. and you will discover more great local businesses offering something different. 

If you venture further west for something to eat or drink, check out Ro House (Vietnemese), When the Pig Came Home (a deli with fab sandwiches) and 3030 (great food and live music). Shamone is a favourite watering hole of ours offering unique drinks and free (!) finger foods daily. Honest Weight is a restaurant and fish shop that is not just a local favourite, but has garnered loads of press for their great food. Grasshopper is available for yummy meat-free offerings.

Looking for modern design and fashion? The Junction has that too and here are just a few highlights! Latre is a great modern unisex clothing store that also features unique art pieces. Mjolk is an internationally-recognized lifestyle shop and gallery featuring local, Scandinavian and Japanese designers. Coal Miner's Daughter is a women's clothing, jewellery, and accessories boutique specializing in local and Canadian independent designers. Their newest location is here in the Junction. 

Vintage hunters can find something too. Door Number Two is located west of Keele and always has great items in store. Electric Revival gives new life to antique lighting fixtures for some truly stunning one-of-a-kind pieces. 

The Junction boasts loads of salons for all styles and hair types. Gossips is a great location for curly hair styling and products and Arcana has a super cool vibe, but the service is chill and very down-to-earth. Guys can check out hip barbershop Rod, Gun & Barbers for a cut, shave or even grab a drink from the bar in the back. 

Martin's Flower Shop used to be located just steps away from us, but they haven't moved out of the neighbourhood. Just down the road, they have great window displays always and a great spot to pick up remarkable fresh florals.

The original location for popular gluten-free bakery Bunner's is here in the Junction. We recommend their cinnamon buns or their supersonic cookie, but really we could endorse it all! Don't need gluten-free then hit up the old school bakery Sweet Trolley right next door. 

We are only hitting on a few of the great shops in the neighbourhood so be sure to check out the Junction BIA directory here for a listing of most of the shops in the area. 

If you are lucky, you may even be lucky enough to be visiting when one of the Junction's special events is on. The popular Junction Farmers Market runs from Spring to Fall on Saturdays. 

Other annual events include the Toronto Design Offsite Festival (January), Summer Solstice (June), Pumpkinfest (October) and the Holiday Market featuring Santa in the Junction (December). Check out the Junction BIA Events page for more details!

   

 Farmer's Market Unique Stores Restaurants and Bars in this Hidden Gem in Toronto

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Dancing with the Docs: Fundraising Gala Buttons for The Ottawa Hospital March 12 2018

The highly popular Dancing with the Docs Gala fundraiser for The Ottawa Hospital Foundation is underway again and this time we got to get in on the fun!

Each year a number of doctors and researchers from The Ottawa Hospital train with professional dancers, much like the popular Dancing with the Stars television show, to compete for the Medicine Ball Award. Each dance team is raising money for an priority need of their choosing.

This gala event is also a great way to connect Ottawa’s health-care leaders and those who shape how we care for patients here and around the world.

You can learn more about each doctor and even vote for them here.

ottawa hospital gala custom fundraising buttons

The fundraising priorities supported by this event include:

  • Fundraising Priorities Supported by this Event:
  • Research Chair in Regenerative Orthopaedic Surgery
  • Advanced Stem Cell Therapies and access to care
  • Breast Health Centre
  • Cancer Research
  • Molecular Oncology Diagnostics Laboratory
  • Vision Research

We got to make Custom 3" Buttons for each team to support this awesome cause. The buttons show each doctor and dancer team. The dancers are professionals from the Arthur Murray Dance Studio in Ottawa

Watch the video below to see just what kind of a night you are in for if you attend the 2018 Dancing with the Docs Gala:

While we don't yet have an Ottawa location, we have been making custom buttons for our Ottawa customers for years with fast turnaround time - quick high quality production paired with fast shipping times. You'd almost think we were in Ottawa!

Looking for custom buttons for your event? Please reach out if you'd like to find out more. 

   

 

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Get Crafty With Us This March Break in the Junction's Button Maker Space! March 09 2018

March Break is on it's way and we would love for you to come spend some of it with us! Unless of course you are headed to a warm beach somewhere and then well, go do that. ;)

maker space Toronto March Break

Come to our button maker space located in Toronto's Junction neighbourhood to make a button for special March Break price of just $1 per pin or take part in daily custom jewelry making sessions!

If you have never made a button, just know it is a great activity for all ages - kids and kids at heart! This is the perfect way to introduce yourself to button making.

Bring your own images to use or create your design on the spot in our space. All materials needed will be available.

We are offering special March Break Make-A-Button pricing of $1 per button! Normally it is $2 per button. 

fun march break activity toronto affordable

Daily Custom Jewelry Making Sessions at 1 p.m.

We will also be offering casual custom jewelry making sessions at 1 p.m. each day from March 12 - 16.

For $20, you will get to make one bracelet or one necklace with 10 interchangeable charms that you design! Again, bring your own designs or make in store with materials provided.

Junction Toronto Button store

No need to register for either of these activities (unless you are bringing a large group). Just pick a day and come on into our bright and friendly maker space located in the trendy Junction area. We can't wait to get making some stuff with you. 

Do contact us if you have any questions or need any more information. 

   

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Centennial College Story Arts Campus Presents Harry Potter Exhibition with Fun Custom Pins March 08 2018

Just how well do you know Harry Potter? 

Even if you think you know all there is to know about the Boy Who Lived and the other fantastic characters of the Harry Potter universe, you might want to check out this upcoming Toronto show: Centennial College Story Arts Campus Presents Harry Potter, The Exhibition

custom harry potter hogwarts house buttons

The event runs March 7th to 14th with a special closing event on the 14th. As part of this "What's in a Name" exhibition you will be able to learn all about the history of your favourite (and not-so-favourite) Harry Potter characters. 

You will also be able to see these fun custom 1" buttons we made for the event! 

In the area and want to go? Find out more here.

Not close, but still wanting to test your knowledge of the Potter-verse? Test yourself with this online quiz!

Have an event you want to make buttons for? Contact us for more information about custom buttons! You don't have to be in Toronto to get fast delivery. No magic needed, just some super service to get you what you need. ; )

   

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What's Your Sign? Introducing Sparkly Zodiac Button Cards! March 07 2018

So what's your sign? No, really what is your zodiac sign?

We have created a new series of holographic zodiac buttons that is written in the stars.

Pinback Button Star Sign Zodiac Holographic Gift Idea

We have all 12 constellations in the pin collection available in store or place your order online. Each button comes pinned to a card with a fun description of what the zodiac sign is, so see if you match up with your sign. 

These are simple and fun birthday gift ideas to tuck into a card, give instead of a card or as a fun addition to another present. A great and inexpensive way to celebrate someone special. 

Wear your pin so no one ever needs to ask you what your sign is. ; )

 

   

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Political Campaign Buttons for Every Cause in Upcoming Provincial Elections March 05 2018

Election excitement has been filling up the headlines again as Ontario heads into a provincial election in a few months. There has been some added drama surrounding the unexpected resignation of Progressive Conservative leader Patrick Brown and the need to elect a new leader of the party so close to the main June 7th election. 

Whatever stories are filling the newsfeeds, buttons have always played a role in elections. 

So as things heat up here in Ontario and will start to intensify in Quebec and New Brunswick - the two other provinces having elections this year - we would like to help you determine how campaign buttons can help your party and causes that are important to you.

Ontario General Election 2018 Campaign Button

We have written an in-depth guide to election buttons here to help you figure out how to make effective campaign buttons. We are always busy making buttons come election time, with experience on the specific design needs of each party. Contact us today if you would like us to make custom election buttons for your campaign or to get you set up with a buttonmaker to make your own!

Beyond Party Lines - The Issues That Matter to You the Citizen

Buttons don't just have to support a specific candidate or party either. There are a load of big issues being discussed this year and buttons can help let people know where you stand while also raising awareness wherever you go.

What is the issue or cause that is important to you in this year's election? 

Buttons can be given to supporters to help spread the word by simply pinning it on your jacket or posting a picture on your social media feeds. Campaign buttons are conversation starters, giving people the opportunity to learn more about what matters to you and allowing others to be engaged too.

Campaign Buttons Ontario Federal Election 2018

Make your message clear.  You can always expand on your message in conversation, but make sure the issue really stands out in a clear way on your pin. "Affordable Housing NOW!" is much more clear and effective than putting a paragraph or lots of details onto the pin. With more words, the issue can get lost and the button gets a lot less effective. You can include a website so those who want to know more can find out more there.

Make it catchy.  Using humour or stating your message in a clever way helps. Think of the best Super Bowl ads and what usually resonates with people. Just think about what you connect with and remember. Use those tactics in designing your own pin. 

Use #peoplepowerpin to share your message - and get a button from us!

Follow the #peoplepowerpin hashtag on social media to see what issues matter to others across the country. If you have a button to share or just a topic that is important to you in the upcoming election, please be sure to use #peoplepowerpin.

We want to highlight issues across Canada (and beyond!) so share your issues and if you haven't made that message into a pin, we will do it for you. Just tag #peoplepowerpin with what issue matters to you - we will put in on a pin and send it to you!

We look forward to hearing what matters to you!

   

 

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#PressforProgress this International Women's Day March 8th with Buttons and Stickers March 01 2018

International Women's Day is coming up on March 8th and there has never been a more important time to take a stand for women's equality.

International Women's Day

#MeToo and #TimesUp have become powerful global movements that are putting women's empowerment in the spotlight, giving even greater importance to March 8th

Did you know that gender parity is over 200 years away, according to the World Economic Forum's 2017 Global Gender Gap Report?

Now is the time to get active and work for change to speed things up!

And we want to help arm you with the tools to spread the message of women's empowerment - and more! - and spark conversations about the issues that are important to you. 

Introducing the Women's Empowerment Collection!

gender parityMarch 8th Women's Daycustom activist buttons

We are super excited to introduce our Women's Empowerment Collection as the first in the new People Power Press Social Justice Merchandise series.

This collection includes of 7 simple, but powerful designs are available to order online as buttons in small or large quantities. You can also order as stickers, magnets or any of our other custom products. 

We have each image available in pink and white AND black and white. Choose one image or mix them up. You can also customize these images for your own organization. 

social justice tools Toronto#PressforProgress#metoo

#PressforProgress is the theme for International Women's Day 2018

This year's theme for International Women's Day is #PressforProgress. You can read more here, but the idea is that we need to stop being complacent and start taking action to see real change. 

We also made some #MeToo buttons and #TimesUp pins that you can check out here.

Our Women's Empowerment collection is the first one in our series of People Power Press Social Justice Merchandise. LGBTQ+ rights buttons and anti-racism buttons are under development and will be made available in the spring of 2018. You can also find more activist buttons here.

     

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Toronto Lash and Eyebrow Bar Pretty Little Secrets is Celebrating 2 Years of Beautiful! February 28 2018

Imagine feeling beautiful the moment you wake up, without any makeup. That is the goal that Pretty Little Secrets Lash & Brow Bar has for all its customers.

Custom Beauty Buttons Pretty Little Secrets Toronto

Located in Toronto's West End, the business offers a variety of up-to-date lash and brow services for women and men, including lash extensions, eyebrow shaping and makeup application.

The business is growing fast and it is time to celebrate! Pretty Little Secrets is throwing a party on March 2nd to celebrate 2 years of making their customers feel beautiful

We got to get in on the action with these bright and fun 2-1/2" custom buttons with the Pretty Little Secrets logo that will be part of their Miami Vice birthday bash. 

If you are in the area and want to join the fun - because it really does look like a lot of fun! - you can RSVP to info@prettylittlesecrets.ca.

lash services for cancer patients toronto

You learn more about all of Pretty Little Secrets services online. Their service has also had an impact on people who have cancer to feel a little more dignity and look more like themselves before, during and after treatments.

They also have a fun and active Instagram account, so check them out: @prettylittlesecrets_canada

Happy Anniversary PLS!!

Buttons for Gift Bags and Swag Bags for Your Event?

Custom buttons make a great addition to any special event, especially if you are thinking of offering swag bags or gift bags for your guests. Buttons - other custom products - are a fun and personal touch for your supporters that they can take home! Contact us if you are looking for gift bag or swag bag ideas. We offer more than buttons.

 

    

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Vegetarian and Vegan Fridge Magnets Now Available! February 27 2018

Hey to our vegetarian and vegan friends! We've created something just for you!

gifts for vegans

Keep your work and home fridges meat-free with our new I (Heart) Veggies Fridge Magnet Collection!

There are 8 different designs available ranging from funny to straight to the point. Whatever approach you want to take, these 2 x 3 rounded rectangle magnets will let folks know what's in your fridge (and what should stay out).

affordable handmade gifts in Toronto

This is especially a great idea for refrigerators that are shared by many people, especially in shared work spaces. 

The magnets can be purchased online or you can pick on up in our shop in Toronto's Junction neighbourhood. 

Also available as in the I (Heart) Veggies Pin Collection as 1.25" pinback buttons. 

Have your own design in mind for a fridge magnet? Let us know and we can help you make it happen! 

   

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Guest Blog! Button Making Takes the Stage in the Classroom at Georges Vanier Elementary School (Surrey) February 12 2018

We work with a lot of schools and educators who are doing such incredible things in the classroom with their button makers. And what they are up to is too good to keep to ourselves. So we've asked some of these teachers to share their programs and results directly with you!

Anna Crosland is an awesome award-winning educator. She teaches at Georges Vanier Elementary School in Surrey, British Columbia.

 

At Georges Vanier Elementary, our People Power Press button maker has been a welcome addition to the student makers and creators at our school.

Our focus has been on Social Emotional Learning and students have been highly motivated to share and further develop their understanding of a number of important Core Competencies. Each of our themed designs are on different colour backgrounds with a border template that allows students to individualize their creations. It is a fully inclusive activity: Absolutely everyone can participate.

kindness in schools

Kindness Counts: A School-Wide Celebration

Our first initiative was to create Kindness Counts buttons. The goal was to encourage acts of kindness but in particular to remember the power and impact of a simple smile. All Staff and students from Kindergarten to Grade 7 drew self portraits and wore their pins proudly to school. We celebrated kindness with a school wide assembly with over 600 unique buttons.

Handy tip: Encourage students to write their names in the middle of the back of their papers. Names at the edges will be cut of by the circle template.

Maker education in schools Canada

A New Generation of Makers

We also encourage students to be Makers: to imagine, to problem-solve, to design, to work co-operatively, to build and to create. Student work is celebrated, confidence is built and students take pride in their accomplishments and efforts.

Our second school-wide initiative, K-7, gave students the opportunity to show off their latest projects, share ideas and helped to solidify the concept that everyone can be a Maker.

Orange Shirt Day Residential Schools Indigenous Peoples

Orange Shirt Day: Understanding the Impact of Residential Schools on Indigenous Peoples

Most recently a Grade 4 class created buttons for Orange Shirt Day. Students have been learning about the impact of Residential Schools on the Indigenous Peoples.

As students come to a deeper understanding, we used traditional Coast Salish Art eye shapes to accompany the message ‘Our Eyes Are Open’.

See more here: http://georgesvanierlibrary.edublogs.org/2017/09/27/our-eyes-are-open-learning-about-residential-schools/

Handy tip: When creating hundreds of unique buttons, write student names on the black plastic backings with white pencil crayons. Also, make a handful of extra pins for 'just in case' - everyone will want to be included.

Overall, the use of the People Power Press button maker has been a great success. Students are highly engaged, not only in making the buttons, but in developing a deeper connection to the message they are sharing. There is a greater understanding of the issues.

Creating the buttons, sharing the process, visibly acknowledging that the school as a whole is working together, helps build and connect our school community.

Anna Crosland is the Teacher-Librarian at Georges Vanier Elementary School in Surrey, B.C. She shares practical ideas on her blog: http://georgesvanierlibrary.edublogs.org and on Twitter: @crosland_a 

 

If you have your own story of how button makers are being used in your school, library or other communities, we'd love to feature your story on the button blog too! Please contact us for more information. :)

   

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Metallic Finish Buttons for Acclaimed Japanese Group DRUM TAOS's North American Tour February 09 2018

TAO: Drum Heart is the latest show from internationally acclaimed Japanese drumming group DRUM TAO. They kicked off their latest North American tour in Montreal on Jan. 31st and along the tour there will be buttons!

japanese drumming Drum Tao tour

We made custom 1-1/4" round buttons with their logo using a metallic finish for a button with an extra bang. 

DRUM TAO's modern, high-energy percussion shows have been seen by over 7 million people worldwide. The show is rooted in traditional art of Japanese drumming, but is distinctively modern with contemporary costumes and innovative visual displays. 

The group performed at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics and their first North American tour was sold out. They have also performed live on The Late Night with Stephen Colbert. If you get the chance, be sure to see them live if you can. It is guaranteed to be a very memorable experience! 

Check out DRUM TAO and learn more about their North American tour!

For a full listing of tour dates you can visit the DRUM TAO website.

You can also find them online (some content is in Japanese):

YouTube: DRUM TAO Channel
Twitter: @drum_tao
Facebook: @DRUMTAO.JPN

Instagram: @drum.tao_official

How are metallic buttons made?

These metallic buttons are created by printing the design on duralar and then letting the silver of the button shine through as the background. You can learn more about this process here.

 Please contact us for more info about metallic buttons, including pricing. 

 

    

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Button Greeting Cards for Your Valentine's Day Sweetheart (and Galentine's Day too!) February 07 2018

The People Power Press Button Greeting Card Collection continues to grow!

We have some super sweet (and maybe a bit sappy) designs just in time for that annual day of love, Valentine's Day!

 fun Valentine's Day cards locally made in Toronto

Get a fun card for your main squeeze that includes a button or two - one for them and one for you! Different designs available.

Not doing the Valentine's Day thing this year, but celebrating Galentine's Day on February 13th instead? Yeah ladies, we have a card for that too!

Greeting Card Galentine's Day February 13 Ovaries Before Brovaries Buttons Utureses before Duderuses Badge

You can order one of our Valentine's Day designs online or pop into the Toronto store to see our current collection.

Handmade Card for Valentines Unique

We also sell wedding cards, birthday cards and baby cards. And we stock various holiday cards throughout the year. You can see the entire (ever expanding) button greeting card collection here!

 

   

 

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Big Buttons for a Big Idea: Toy Lending Library Introduced in Calgary's Growing Sunalta Community Hub February 01 2018

Sunalta is a community in central Calgary, Alberta that is home to a thriving community hub full of great activities and services for all of its residents.  And the hub is about to expand with another awesome service for members of the community - a Toy Lending Library!!

calgary buttons

The new Sunalta Toy Lending Library will be open on February 20th - with these big 4-inch buttons - and will offer educational and age-appropriate toys, as well as seasonal equipment, for a low annual fee. Residents can even volunteer their time to help run the library to have that fee waived.

Lending libraries are a great way for families and caregivers to access a variety of toys without the cost of buying them new. You also won't have to clutter up your home with lots of toys and are able to reduce your environmental impact by sharing and reusing toys, all while building community.   

The Sunalta Community Association and the Community Hub Project

The Sunalta Community Association has been operating since 1954 and is up to lots of great community initiatives, including the Sunalta Community Hub Project in partnership with the United Way of Calgary and Area, The City of Calgary and the Rotary Club of Calgary. You can learn more about this initiative.

Community hubs are common, accessible spaces where all members of a community can come together to share ideas and leadership and access a variety of services and programs. What is offered in each hub is determined by the unique needs of that community. 

Check out the Sunalta Community Association's great website to see just what they are up to. Maybe there is something here that you could make available to your own community! 

You can also follow them on social media:

Instagram: @sunaltayyc 
Facebook: @Sunalta
Twitter: @SunaltaYYC

Big Buttons to Get Noticed 

4" buttons are big buttons. You only need a few but they are sure to get noticed. If you have questions about our really large buttons (there is also a 6" button!) or custom buttons in general, be sure to let us know

     

 

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Tips for Designing DIY Holographic Buttons January 29 2018

Designing Holographic Sparkle Buttons is really fun, and the finished product looks AMAZING. That being said, they are a little bit trickier to design than buttons printed on regular paper.

How to design holographic buttons with foil and dura-lar

Here are some hot tips for making your holographic button designs stand out and looking their very best!

1. Keep your designs simple.

2. The fewer colours, the better.

3. Make sure the shapes in your design aren't too small. 

4. Outline your image with a dark colour for optimal image definition. The picture above shows the same designs with two different treatments. The design on the left has a transparent outline which makes it tricky to see the mermaid. The design on the right has a black outline, which makes the mermaid stand out and look extra awesome!

shiny fun buttons

For full details on how to make your own DIY Holographic Sparkle Buttons, check out this tutorial blog from our archives.

Let us know what other design questions you have and we can include in future how-to blog posts! 

 

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Go Team Canada: Pin On Your Canuck Pride for the 2018 Winter Olympics January 26 2018

The countdown is on for the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea. And we are ready to show our support for the Canadian Olympic team with these fun, cute 1" buttons.

I mean, a goose playing hockey? A moose curling? A skiing polar bear? Adorable.

team canada winter olympic buttons

The Winter Games run February 9th to February 25th and is South Korea's second time hosting the Olympics, with their first hosting gig in 1988.

These Winter Olympic pins are People Power Press' latest vending machine buttons so you can come in and see what you get from all of our available designs. Or you can place an order for your own set (a mix of designs or just one or two, that is up to you!) by contacting us.

Toronto Canada souvenirs

The tiny, wearable Team Canada pins also can double up as a great tourist souvenir pin for anyone visiting Canada or to gift to visitors to this winter sport loving country. You can also get a souvenir pin with the South Korean flag. 

 

    

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