My grandmother and my mother always saved the buttons from old clothes to be used again. Nan did many frugal things like this. She had a bag hanging in the pantry with string she had saved. (Of course back then parcels were tied with string not stuck with sticky tape.) To this day I still save buttons. It's come in handy time and again to replace missing shirt buttons. I once lost a fairly decorative button from a blazer I'd had for years. It couldn't be matched but luckily I had saved a set from an old one before sending it to the rag bag.