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Origin Story #5: The Button

What do blueberries have to do with LucyBlueKnits? That's our final Origin Story.

Buttons have always been integral to our signature mitten design. Not only are they functional—they hold the cuff in place—they're a beautiful tactile element. In the early days, we would source them from the sweaters we selected. Inevitably, we'd run out. Purchasing them made this an expensive element of the final product. Each button was hand sewn, which was labor intensive. Expensive and labor intensive are not a good combination, so we began searching for an alternative.

We wanted to further establish our brand, and, after discarding the idea of a hand-sewn tag (also labor intensive), a custom button seemed like the solution.

Wendy began sketching the design, which we modeled after the button on our favorite blue jeans. As we brainstormed a visual tie-in to our name, blueberries came to mind. Wendy had just returned from blueberry picking and, after all, blue is part of our name—so why not? We finalized the design and began seeking a manufacturer.

Can you find the blueberries on the buttons in the picture?

Having this produced was a bigger challenge than we anticipated. After corresponding for months with a company in China, they suddenly decided to stop working with us. We presented our need to another company, and they told us their minimum order was 100,000 units! After much negotiation and God intervention, they agreed to do a sample run for us. The rest is history.

Each button is still attached by hand in the center of each cuff using a hand press. Your response has been enthusiastic, and we place them on every item except what we make for babies and dogs. (Did you know we created a dog toy this summer? Click here to see this limited edition creation!)

Wendy and I still love blueberries, and our favorite thing to make with them is our Aunt Mary's blueberry streusel coffee cake. Here's the recipe (which makes 3 9–inch round cakes):

Aunt Mary's Blueberry Coffee Cake

4 c. flour

1 1/2 c. sugar

1 T. and 2 t. baking powder

1 1/2 t. salt

1/2 c. shortening, melted

1 1/2 c. milk

2 eggs

4 c. blueberries


1 c. sugar

1 t. cinnamon

2/3 c. flour

1/2 c. butter, melted


2 c. powdered sugar

1 t. maple extract (or almond or vanilla)

1/4 c. softened butter

Mix all ingredients for coffee cake (except blueberries) until moistened; beat vigorously for 2 minutes. Carefully stir in berries. Spread into 3 9–inch round greased and floured cake pans.

Topping: Mix ingredients together and sprinkle on top of batter.

Bake at 350 degrees fro 40-50 minutes. Cool coffee cakes and drizzle glaze over top.

Glaze: Mix ingredients, stirring in 1/3 to 1/2 c. water, 2 T. at a time.

Like blueberries too? These blueberry inspired mittens are currently available:

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