Kanukama's mother of pearl buttons emerge from the oyster shell

Turning craggy oyster shells into glistening pearl buttons

Making Kanukama's mother of pearl buttons is a long, time consuming process.  They are all made by hand using simple tools to shape, carve and polish them.  

Taking off the nacre from the oyster shell

First the nacre is taken off the oyster shell.


Cutting out the button blanks

Button blanks are then carved out of the shell. As the Myanmar oyster shells are so large, many buttons can be carved from the nacre.

Sanding the buttons

Each blank button is then sanded three times, each with a more finer sand paper to make sure that they are smooth. 

Carving the button's shape

The finer details of the button is then carved and slowly a Kanukama mother of pearl button comes to life.

Kanukama's mother of pearl button emerges

Kanukama's mother of pearl button slowly emerges.  For a simple round button, a button maker can make around 500 in a day.  The carved buttons take longer, typically just around a 100 are made in a day. 

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