One piece stamped brass depicting a family of ducks with a wooden shoe. Brass is textured to imitate parchment.
This can help us understand why it is important to look at all aspects of the button back.
From the front, the stamped brass shoe and birds appear to be above a textured parchment background. The background is painted and worked in such a manner that it is almost impossible to discern that there is no paper present. However, if examined under a magnifying glass, you will find that there is no “edge” of a separate (background) material or edge of paper. The decorative finish on the metal is amazing at imitating parchment or leather.
Turning the button over, we find that it is “repousee” or molded in place. The button is too thin to have a background material under the birds and, as the back shows, it is molded into place.
The above is based on the National Button Society's Classification System.
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