Do I need a circle cutter if I am buying a button maker? July 10 2012

People ask me all the time if the circle cutter is necessary when buying a button maker.  Do I need a graphic punch to make buttons? What is the graphic punch for?

No you do not need a graphic punch or circle cutter to make buttons.  You can cut circles with scissors.  A button made with a circle cutter or graphic punch looks identical to a button cut with scissors when finished.  The difference is the time it takes to make the button or more relevant the number of buttons you wish to make at a time.  If you’re making a few buttons at a time, up to say 20, you can do that with scissors.  Once you start thinking you need 100 buttons in an hour that will be difficult with scissors - and not much fun.  If you need 1000 buttons in a day: impossible but certainly doable with a graphic punch.

A Graphic Punch for cutting circles to make buttons

If you are doing “make your own button” events, tables or workshops with kids then you also do not have to get a circle cutter.  Better to buy pre-cut circles to match your button maker. I know People Power Press sell the pre-cut circles here:

 There are different kinds of circle cutters.  I recommend the graphic punch from Tecre for speed and excellent centering. (See picture above) Good centering is key, when buttonmaking!  If you are doing low volume circle cutting or if you buy pre-cut circles and just want a circle cutter for occasional and not volume use then this is a reasonable cutter for $20 - (You do get what you pay for)

A hobby circle cutter for button making Inexpensive hobby cutter

If you are considering getting more than 1 button machine and looking to save money.  Say you have your eye on a 1” button maker now but further down the road maybe a 2-1/4” then an adjustable cutter makes sense.  Not if speed is your driving force, graphic punches are faster, but a well priced machine that cuts multiple size circles is the adjustable rotary punch:   A big plus for the rotary punch is that it cuts fabric!!!  A lot of people make fabric buttons - without mylar so you get the fabric texture and graphic punches do not cut fabric.

adjustable rotary circle cutter Adjustable Rotary Circle cutter




Any feedback on your experience with circle cutting and/or this article welcome!