There was a podcast that gave a good overview of what it’s like to go to one of these shows—unfortunately the podcast is not available but I’ve included here an excerpt from the CraftyPod blog posted in Aug/2012by Diane Gilleland... “...had to share the amazing experience I had at the National Button Society <http://www.nationalbuttonsociety.org/> Show yesterday. I'm telling you, crafters, Button Society Shows are where it's at. And they happen all over the place, so if you're near one, you should go!
So, Button Society shows are aimed primarily at button collectors. I love buttons dearly, but don't know that much about collection. It's always fun, though, to get a glimpse into other spaces where people geek out on things. And the world of button collecting runs very deep.
Most of the booths have row upon row of these display cards, where buttons are organized by material or type. And the collectors flip through them looking for treasure to add to their collections. There's even a show, where people submit specific collections for judging. (Indiana State Button Show is one of these!)
But here's why you'd love a Button Society show: poke boxes! Poke boxes are my new best friend. Many booths have them, and they range in price from a quarter a button up to a few dollars a button. You rummage about, creating that glorious button-rattle sound, and you fish out the treasures. And there were so many treasures.
It's a good thing I went into that room with a specific budget and no extra cash, is all I'm saying. I had planned to save out a few bucks to buy myself a coffee for the ride home, but ten minutes into the show, I was all, ‘Screw the coffee! Are there any extra coins at the bottom of my purse?!’ ...I spent all of $20.00, and amassed an incredible haul for that amount...
I should add here: button dealers are some of the nicest people on earth.
So, yes. If your city has a Button Society, I can't recommend enough that you check out their shows. Oh, the crafting possibilities! Whether you sew, make jewelry, do mixed media, or any of a hundred other crafts, you'll find wonderful materials at a button show. They're like a great hidden resource, right under our noses.”