Looking through the Button Museum collection, there are buttons that speak clearly of their time and those that seem like they could’ve been made just yesterday. I came upon this pair of advertising buttons for Persil laundry detergent and Sanitol talcum powder and was struck by how much they fall into the latter category– both designs come off as surprisingly contemporary for being made close to a century ago.
Though they’re not actually a pair, these two buttons compliment each other perfectly with the saturated background colors, white text and strong black shadows. Our best guess dates them to the pre-war period– the red one maybe from around the turn of the century and the aqua a bit later as it has a bit more of an art deco feel to it.
With hand-lettering and retro styles back into vogue, echoes of the buttons above can definitely be seen in current designs like the collection below.