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1. A small slit in a garment or piece of fabric for fastening a button.
2. Chiefly British A boutonniere.
tr.v. but·ton·holed, but·ton·hol·ing, but·ton·holes
1. To make a buttonhole in.
2. To sew with a buttonhole stitch.
3. To accost and detain (a person) in conversation: "He was also frequently buttonholed by White House lobbyists" (Terence Moran).

[V., sense 3, probably alteration of button-hold.]

but′ton·hol′er n.


a person who buttonholes
References in periodicals archive ?
These machines can also handle a wide variety of styles, fabrics, and sizes-a buttonholer can be adjusted to produce as many holes as style dictates; a seamer can sew a 28- or 38-inch inseam.
Noting this surge in interest, former NDP leader Ed Broadbent, one of electoral reform's staunchest buttonholers, said recently on CBC Radio's "The House" that 15 years ago, people's eyes used to glaze over ten seconds into a conversation on electoral reform; now, he quipped, the glazing starts at 30 seconds.
They include such things as modified kitchen utensils, boxtop openers, buttonholers, and spring-loaded scissors.