Interestingly, the United Nations logo was originally designed for a lapel pin. It turned out to be really good that they decided to pass the lapel pin design off as their official logo. UN logo pins were produced afterwards and may indicate that the bearer of the pin is affiliated with the United Nations.
Some use lapel pins as a symbol of membership to a particular group or organization. It can also be used as a badge indicating that the wearer belongs in a particular event. It can be used as entrance passes or VIP tickets to an event or activity. In any case, lapel pins are very useful. Aside from being a flashy ornament, it can be used for a lot of other things.
Most lapel pins are manufactured in China. Since the process is fairly easy, the lapel pin industry has spread all over the globe. Custom label pins can be made from lapel production companies. These are lapel pins with customized designs.
There are six basic types of custom label pins: cloisonné, soft enamel, photo etched, photo dome, screen print, and 4-color processed. These types have almost the same fundamental material in the pin itself. They only differ in the color embellishment and other parts of the process.
Cloisonné was developed by the Chinese a few hundred years ago. It is the process of stamping out the pin from a sheet of copper into grids and the recessed areas are filled with enamel powder. Each grid is colored in one by one. It is fired at 900 degrees and cooled after. The finishing touch includes grounding down the surface of the pin and plating the copper. The pin is polished for a cleaner look.
Soft enamel consists of separating the areas of color with strips of metal. The areas of color rest below the metal surface and is covered with epoxy for a good finish.
Photo etched and photo dome processes differ in the application of the design. Photo etched custom label pins begins by stamping out the shape of the pin and the design is chemically etched into the base metal. The design should be printed on the negative side of the photograph. On the other hand, photo dome makes use of vinyl. The design is printed on vinyl and applied on the metal base. Basically, photo dome is similar to photo printing. The pin starts off as an image and is glued to the metal. The surface is flat since the design is only a photo print. Both processes end with the pins coated in epoxy for protection.
Silk printed lapel pins utilize the same procedure in silk screening. Blocks of solid color are applied via a silk screen. Epoxy is used for the finish.
The 4-colors process allows the blending of colors. This process is best used for complicated custom label pins designs. There are over hundreds of colored hues to choose from and another hundred to include color designs and blends. The amount of colors to be used is unlimited.
Other useful tips are for the design itself. When you are making the design, it will be easier to start with simpler color combinations and basic fonts. Once you have the hang of it, then you can experiment with more creative ones. Have the pins made by experts or establishments familiar with pin production. If you are interested in making your own pin, ask the producers if you are allowed to observe the process.
The trick is to know the best process used to produce your design. It will be easier to consult an expert first. Do extra research when necessary.