Also known as tagua, corozo is a species of tropical palm found in northwest South America, starting north of Peru, all throughout Ecuador and Colombia, and southern Panama. The palm produces large fruits which contain seeds that are carefully collected, processed and used to make everything from artisanal figurines to high quality buttons.
Artists and manufacturers can make corozo into an endless number of beautiful items because, being less porous than ivory, it withstands most mechanized actions. Corozo can be treated with a laser, cut, pressed, heated, burned, bleached, tinted, and polished to extraordinarily bright finishes. After these treatments, the final appearance can be breathtaking. Corozo is a wonderful choice for buttons and other accessories, as well as for fine jewelry and other applications.
Absolutely. corozo seeds can be collected only after they fall naturally from the tree. Seeds that are picked from the palm before they fall are not ripe enough for button production. For this reason, our button production never harms the palm trees.
Corozo grows most commonly in remote areas of higher elevation. The process required to gather and transform these seeds from their original form into raw material is relatively simple, but it involves many steps. People with relatively little training can gather, prepare, dry, peel, cut, turn, grade and transport the seeds. Our process, which requires over five hundred thousand pounds of seeds every month, generates over one thousand full-time and part-time low-skill labor jobs in depressed and impoverished communities. These jobs help the communities to grow economically and prosper and, consequently, our button production increases the quality of life for the residents.
At a microscopic level, corozo is composed of very tightly wound fibers. Therefore, articles made of corozo are naturally durable, with excellent scratch, heat, impact and weather resistance. Clothing with corozo buttons can be machine washed, steamed, dry cleaned and even ironed with no harmful effects. Corozo is, however, a porous material that should not be submerged underwater for extended periods of time (24 hours or longer) as some warping may occur.
As the natural process of germination occurs, changes in the speed and density of seed formation create layers with subtly different densities. Because buttons are made from seed slices, these layers, with their beautiful, fingerprint-like patterns, are often visible.
No, because of the superior dyeing process we use, the buttons absorb the color several millimeters below the surface. That means the colors of our buttons will not run or get scraped off with a scratch.
MOQ is 1 gross (144 pieces)*. Our minimum order size to qualify for bulk pricing is 10 gross per model-size** item. There are several price break points as the volume ordered increases. A certain number of colors will be free of charge depending on the volume of the order; additional colors will be $5 each. Please inquire for further information.
* Limitations apply, please contact us.
**a model-size item is a specific model in a specific size I.E. E100 24L would be one model-size item and E250 24L would be a different model-size item.
Lead times can vary, but normally they are 5-10 business days for items in stock and 10-15 business days for all other orders.
We can customize just about every aspect of your order. You may order a completely custom shape, in any specific color and with any engraving. You can also choose from one of our special finishes, as well as any level of shine from matte to high polish. Please visit contact us for more information.
We accept all major credit cards, PayPal, check and wire transfer. Please contact us for details.
You must prepay all orders unless we agree to other conditions.
If you are returning an item for any reason whatsoever, we require that you return it within 14 days after you receive the merchandise. We inspect all returned items upon their arrival at our place of business.
If you are returning an item because of an error we have made, we will refund the full cost of the merchandise and all shipping charges.
If you wish to return or exchange items you purchased from us for some reason other than our error, you may also do so within 14 days of the date of your receipt of the purchase. Please Note: Corozo Buttons will accept returns of open packages as long as there are no missing items. Returns and exchanges in unopened (new) package conditions are not subject to a restocking fee; however, we will not refund shipping charges. Returns in opened or otherwise altered packaging are subject to a 30% restocking fee and we will not refund shipping charges.
Yes, you can purchase buttons in natural and then dye them yourself. However, we do not recommend that. Dyeing corozo is a very complicated process that takes much training and experience, as well as the right ingredients in the right quantities.
Custom button sampling can only be done for orders over 500 gross. Sampling for orders under 500 gross is allowed only for in-stock items. If the in-stock samples don't require additional work, then the samples can be sent free of charge. If they do require additional work such as dyeing, laser engraving or any other process then fees will apply.
No. All our dyes are certified to be nontoxic and biodegradable. Our buttons are safe even for baby clothing.
Production is done entirely in-house at our Panama City, Panama facility.
While it is not our main line of business, we often do sell corozo blanks from our stock, but they are subject to availability. We are able to source the blanks for you, but we need prepayment [no hyphen] or a guarantee of payment ahead of time. Please contact us for more information.
We currently have only one showroom, which is in Miami, Florida. We make an effort to attend several trade shows every year. Please contact us for more information.
Yes, we offer coconut as well. We can also offer horn buttons, if the horn is available to us.
Absolutely. We love to meet our clients face to face and would be happy to give you a personal tour of the facility. Please contact us if you would like to schedule a visit.
Yes, we make several other corozo accessories such as zipper pulls, loops, tags, etc. We can also make custom items, but bear in mind that we are limited by the size of the raw material seeds.
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