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Leda buttons were produced by General Plastics as a separate brand from around 1958, the name ‘Leda’ having been trademarked in September 1957. Advertising in 1958 referred to “Leda by Beauclaire”. In 1963 F. W. Williams Holdings Ltd. bought a 50 percent share of Beutron Australia Ltd., and made an offer for General Plastics, which was described as being “integrated” with Beutron. Some Leda cards had the free cotton wrapped around the card, which was a G. Herring/Beutron marketing tool, further confirming the ownership of Beutron of General Plastics Ltd/Leda.
Entries from the 1960 Sydney ‘Pink Pages’ directory: General Plastics made the buttons, but Roger Berry distributed them.
Leda had various labels on the cards, including Boil Proof, Fashion Buttons, Permaloid, Permalon and Permalite. Whether this actually refers to varying plastics or not is anyone’s guess without chemical testing! Often the same button appeared with different names, as seen below, so I doubt there were real differences between the button types.
Leda-Beauclaire cards, c.1958
The cards so marked probably date before the examples simply marked “Leda”. There was a need to introduce the new brand to existing customers, before the name Beauclaire was dropped. Also; none of the ‘Leda-Beauclaire’ cards have the G.Herring feature of added cotton. This happened as General Plastics started to struggle, and to be absorbed into G.Herring (or Beutrin Australia, as it became).
Change of graphics: Possibly early 1960s
A little curiosity
Sample Cards: late 1950s-1960s
A sample book from the late 1960s
Leda Buttons Sold Under Other Brandings
Leda style buttons are found on Embassy (G.J. Coles brand) and Kencrest (David Kennedy brand) cards. See below for comparison: