Celluloid One-Piece 30's Buttons



One-piece 30's celluloids are the name collectors have given these types of buttons. They have a similar look, are quite thinly molded sheet celluloid or might be thicker wafer type, the one thing in common is they are one-piece construction meaning just the button with an applied shank. Once you are familiar with the one-piece construction and what shank to expect then you should have a good handle on what qualifies as a "one-piece celluloid 30's button". The NBS classification is more inclusive now so here's some types I've seen and collected that do qualify as this type. You'll find sew-thrus, shapes, applied shanks but another thing you will always find is raised "cameo molding". This means you can feel the design is raised, it is not separately applied but molded as one with the button. Some are "buffed" having a lighter look at the top surfaces, some have background "stippling", but not all. There are many that now qualify that may be one solid color with no buffing, no stippling and available in all kinds of sizes. Look for great colors, shapes and unusual pictorials and non-pictorials (harder to find and not that beautiful as the pictorials but a "good representation" on your collector or competition tray should have both pictorial and non-pictorial). Here's some examples and by no means all that are available. There are many rare types and many common types, here's just a sampling. I may have some of these for sale, feel free to browse the selling pages by clicking here to CC's Buttons. Have some buttons like these to sell? Click here to e-mail me: carolc@vintagebuttons.net or copy and paste my address into your own e-mail program carolc@vintagebuttons.net


Here's what the back looks like on 99% of the non-sew-thru (two or four pierced sewing holes thru button is "sew-thru") one-piece 30's celluloid buttons which carry a separately applied sewing shank I call an "igloo" type shank or just a U shaped strip of applied celluloid.



Years ago this celluloid wafer of a fox would not have been accepted as a "one piece 30's", it also lacks "buffed" surface (where tint is applied then partially removed to give a contrasting look), but today this button shows up and is accepted on a one-piece 30's celluloid tray. This one is a dark black color with no contrast. This sold on eBay 3/10/16 for only $14.72


Hard to find, great "shape", nice color, Scottish Dancer, 1pc-30's celluloid sew-thru, ex-lg 1-3/4". Sold 12/6/15 on eBay for $75.00 by Barbara Weeks, this is her image.



The Westie & Scottie terriers on one button is a commonly found type. Look for the best condition and color you can find. This is sew-thru construction. This button in a variety of sizes and colors sells for no more than $10 as it is very commonly found



This button is popular with collectors but not "rare" although some may claim it to be. You can find this in various sizes with various colors. In the tray shown below there's a plain yellow one with no "buffing", it would not be as popular even though it's larger. The buffing gives definition to the design. This button has an "igloo" (my word not an official shank name) shank applied directly to the button back. Here's a closer view, click: Here. This button is rather ark in person and smaller than the yellow one on the tray below but it's worth more because it's just better colored. Estimated value which can vary starts at $40 but can go up dramatically from there. Brighter colors will add value and condition matters.



Here's a couple of medium size (can be found in large too) in rather drab colors, all black on the Poodle, slightly buffed to cream black stylized plant life, both qualify as 1pc-30's buttons and can be a useful size variance for your competition tray. The poodle is one that was not considered a 1pc-30's for years but it is now, look for great color and a variety of sizes on this one. Here's a closer view, click: Here. Values are low for the stylized plant life button which you can likely find cheap in a poke box or mixed in a big lot on eBay. The poodle goes for a little more even though it's common. This medium size all black one values around $8.00 in my opinion. A larger one in a great color in great condition could go up to $30.



Super common design but this one stands out a bit more due to the modified square shape, the thicker wafer construction and the taupe color. This design can be found in a variety of shapes, colors, sizes and even in wood composition (Burwood/Syrocco). Here's a closer view, click: Here. This one in NBS large size has an estimated value of $25. Others are worth somewhat less unless they have an unusual color. If you see one that seems to have applied paint that has worn off, that's likely paint added after it left the factory at someone's kitchen table. Colors should be part of the celluloid itself and not applied separately to the surface.
More below....
Below is a collector tray representing a variety of beloved vintage celluloid buttons called "one piece 30's. The rarest types are not represented but there is a nice variety.


The flapper face button is not a 1pc 30's button, just happens to be on the tray. The jury is out regarding the one above it that most just call "buffed celluloid". It's the same thickness as a 1pc 30's and I think it fits in the classification. This notion has yet to be competition tested but will be soon!


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