Badges and Buttons - Waistcoats and Vests

Stephen Bottomley (Designer), Susan Cross (Designer), Elizabeth Turrell (Artist)

Research output: Non-textual formArtefact

Abstract / Description of output

Badges & Buttons Waistcoats & Vests is an exhibition exploring the notion of this modest form of jewelry. Curators Elizabeth Turrell (UK) & Robert Ebendorf (USA) have asked 26 artists, mostly from the United Kingdom and the US, to come up with their own kind of button with a message. The artist badges are displayed on vests or waistcoats – vintage, altered or custom-made clothing puts the jewelry on an imagined wearer.

The exhibition will travel to the Society of Contemporary Crafts in Pittsburg from October – December 2012.

Light Art and Design Gallery, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, 2013

Badges & Buttons – Waistcoats & Vests

Susan Cross: Artist Statement

Edinburgh has many fascinating vintage clothes emporiums.
Having been invited to participate in this unusual project my starting point was inspired by finding this bottle green woollen waistcoat circa 1950. Dunn & Co were a well known, traditional gentleman’s outfitters in the UK.
Dunn & Co was founded in 1886 by George Arthur Dunn, a Quaker who started by selling hats on the streets of Birmingham. Forty years later he had 200 hat shops and as many franchises in other department stores. These gradually developed into a string of high street shops specializing in formal wear, especially suits, blazers and flannels.

Mr Dunn was a modern thinker, being the first to own a combine harvester and open a vegetarian hotel here in Britain. He died in 1939.

I was interested to discover that the company started out originally as hatters and thus the idea evolved for this project …. to use old thimbles that are a traditional tool for the tailor and to turn them into ‘badges’ inspired by the distinctive Quaker hat.

Susan Cross
June 2012

Designed & made a collection of 15 badges/brooches in silver & base metal

Stephen Bottomley, Statement:
‘ Scent D’Or’ – enamel, Silver, Copper and Gold. 2012

There exists a long tradition of adorning pinning flowers to jackets and waistcoats as ornaments or at times of remembrance.

In 2010 I spent several weeks teaching jewellery in Seoul, South Korea at the Sookmyung Women’s University. Whilst on campus there I collected the beautiful fallen star-shaped flowers from the persimmon tree. Later back in the UK I direct cast the hardwood’s flowers in silver. These often incomplete, fragile and ephemeral fragments represent memories of a precious time and place, as intangible and fleeting as scent.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationVelvet da Vinci gallery, San Francisco
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jul 2012


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