Thought you knew all about lapel pins? Think again. Boost your knowledge with these interesting facts and helpful tips about lapel pins.
From recognizing special achievements to practicing a little self-expression, lapel pins are a great way to wear a stylish accessory with pride. If you’re wondering where the lapel pin came from and what it means, look no further.
Check out this handy guide to learn five fun facts all about pins that you might not know about, so read on to learn more!
1. Lapel Pins Are Inspired by Boutonnieres
As the men’s suit started to become a fashion staple, seamstresses and designers added a hole in the lapel. This hole was originally designed to keep fresh flowers, giving the man a look of wealth and distinction. As time went on, this hole, also called a boutonniere, was referred to as the “buttonhole flower.” It originated as far back as the 16th century and is considered a sign of wealth, good luck, and protection.
During the 19th century, the boutonniere was accompanied by other accessories on the lapel like jewel-encrusted pins and watch chains, which eventually also lead to the lapel pin. What better way for men to express themselves than to add a unique and shiny pin to their already well-made suit?
2. Pins as a Status Symbol
Brooches and lapel pins have been used for centuries as a way to show off someone’s affiliation with a specific part of society. While women tended to wear jewelry to showcase their wealth, men tended to sport lapel pins. Italian men were all about pins as they wore a fancy brooch also called an enseigne. This pin was usually worn on the brim of a hat to show that they made a successful religious pilgrimage.
For some people, the pins were a protection charm that helped to prevent danger. However, the most impressive way people wore lapel pins was to show an affiliation with the military or as a part of a particular group.
3. All About Pins: Soft and Hard Enamel
Today’s lapel pins are usually made enamel which combines color, durability, and affordability. Soft enamel is typically more affordable and is a perfect option for casual wear or for giving out team awards. Lapel pins made of soft enamel are the most widely used thanks to their colorful designs and practicality. And while hard enamel lapel pins are similar to soft enamel, they also have a few distinguishing features.
A hard enamel pin is heated to increase its strength. Once the pin is dry, it has a smooth, crisp finish that helps it showcase much more intricate detail. These pins are geared toward the more fashion-conscious wearer, but both are equally durable and can be made in any design.
4. How Do Lapel Pins Stay in Place?
The clasp or backing of the pin is what keeps it neatly attached to your lapel, hat, bag, or anything else you choose. These attachments come in a variety of different designs depending on the manufacturer and your preference.
Stick pins are the original lapel pin and they’re easy to use thanks to their simple design. The pin itself is attached to a slender metal stick and then placed directly into the buttonhole. A thin needle at the top slides up and down to secure or release the pin for ease of use.
Today’s lapel pins are often found with a butterfly clutch. This mechanism was made popular by the military and features a sharp point on the back of the pin with a metal “butterfly” attachment. You simply squeeze the sides of the butterfly to release the pin, then press down to reattach it.
Other examples of lapel pin attachments include a magnetic design. Using two strong magnets, the wearer just places the pin on the outside of the garment and sticks the other magnet on the reverse to keep it in place. The most secure form is called a screw and nut, and all you do is simply screw the nut behind the pin in place to keep it neatly on the lapel.
5. Pins Can Be Used for Anything
One wonderful thing about pins is that they can be created in almost any design imaginable. This makes lapel pins a great way to recognize achievements, give out awards, or to use as a fashion accessory.
Many sports teams use lapel pins so fans can show off their team, or they can be given to teams as an award. You’ll also find these pins on police officers, firefighters, and others who work in the public sector too.
Lapel pins can be worn as a symbol of a specific group, a sign of military ranking, or they can even be worn by employees to show off a company logo. And, since these pins can be made into almost anything, they’re easy to customize. Many artists create their own unique designs in the form of a lapel pin. From animated characters to your favorite rock band, these accessories are the perfect form of self-expression.
Make Your Pin Unique
Now that you know all about pins, it’s easy to see why they’re such a beloved item. Choose a pin for your organization, sports team, or school to give people an accessory to be proud of. What once began as a man’s fashion accessory for the suit, today’s pins are worn by everyone and on everything.
Visit our website for a huge selection of free art and amazing pins, and contact us today to get a free quote on all your lapel pin needs.