Aunt Norie’s Sewing Room
A mother of three grade school youngsters was puzzled. She said, "I don't know how they do it. They don't unbutton, I'm sure. I think they just yank and pull, and pop the buttons right off. I use stronger thread and they even take bits of fabric along with the buttons, leaving a small hole. In summer, they're happy with T-shirts and tank tops but in winter they like warm fuzzy flannel shirts."
Her dilemma takes us to mending and strengthening those pulled-out button areas.
Depending on the size of the torn area, if the hole is smaller than the button, darn it down with matching thread over a small piece of reinforcing fabric slipped under the hole.
Then sew the button on again.
If it's torn beyond the button so far that a darn won't be strong enough, you may need to put an actual patch under the button.
I even have taken took off all the buttons and then placed a strip of stronger fabric -- or even twill tape -- in a line under all of the buttons all the way down the shirt front, then replaced the buttons. For even more strength, sew a tiny button directly under the top button on the inside of the garment, sewing through both buttons at the same time.
Wear those thimbles and cut your thread on a slant.
-- Aunt Norie, P.O. Box 265, Tonganoxie 66086; firstname.lastname@example.org.