Okay, okay, probably nobody needs instructions on how to do this. But I thought these pictures (from making my waistcoat) were really pretty … so here they are:
First: Pick your fabric, and buy your self-cover buttons – they come in two pieces, one with grabby bits on the inside and one that’s the button-back. I picked the pinky fabric because it’s what I’ve used on the back of my waistcoat (so won’t blend in with the blue/green fabrics on the front), and also because the centres of the flowers are all neat and pinwheel-y and I wanted to use those.
Next: cut circles out of the fabric, sufficient to wrap around (this took me a couple of goes to get the right size. Had I bought the slightly more expensive buttons-in-a-card-pack set, I would have had a template for this. Also, that pack warned on the back that if your fabric is very thin you need to use 2 layers, or strengthen it with interfacing).
Then hold carefully, and squish the fabric over the button. I found the best way was to line everything up, and then start at one point on the circumference, wedge it in around the metal hooks (using a fingernail), and then pull-and-wedge all the way round the edge, holding tightly to keep the centre lined up. Once gripped by the metal prongs, the fabric should stay put – if it pops up, go back and fix it. Then do the obvious thing: push the back on.