Types of Pin Backs
You may be an avid pin collector, or you may be someone who is just starting out your pin collection. Either way, you may not have given much thought to the design process. But..did you know there are different types of pin backs? Some pin backs are more secure, while others are better for displaying. Interested in learning more? Read on to discover the most popular types of pin backs!
These are one of the most popular types of pin backs! They have two metal prongs that you squeeze to fasten a pin or release it. Also referred to as military clutches, these pin backs are perfect for daily wear on clothing, purses, backpacks, etc. However, if you will be using your pin under rough conditions, you may opt for another type of securing option.
Rubber pin backs attach by being pushed into a pin’s needlepoint to fasten and release a pin. These pin backs can come in a variety of colors or shapes to match the actual pin design. Like butterfly pin backs, rubber pin backs are great for daily wear, and are actually one of the most comfortable pin backs if wearing pins against skin. Another great thing about rubber pin backs is if they are worn so much that they start losing their grip, they’re very easy to replace. Rubber pin backs are also perfect for use on pin boards because of the ease of removal.
Jewelry pin backs feature a metal locking mechanism that latches onto a pin needle. They are one of the more secure types of pin backs. To attach jewelry pin backs, you just push the metal nub of the clutch up before slipping the needle into the pinhole and releasing. These are popular and are liked by many because of their graceful design.
Deluxe pin backs feature an internal locking mechanism that grips a pin’s needlepoint to fasten a pin into place. Similar to jewelry pin backs, these are ideal for using on pins that are anticipated to get some rough wear because of their durability, or on thicker materials (ex: on a heavy coat, etc.).
Magnetic backs consist of two magnets, one installed into the pin itself and another to help it attach to materials. Since pins are attached using magnets, these backings work best when fastening to thinner materials, because it will allow you to attach pins to clothes or material without creating holes. Magnetic backings are preferred with kids a lot of times, since they don’t present any sharp objects, or are great to wear with expensive clothing, since they don’t puncture the fabric.
Flathead Locking Clutch
These pin backs are super easy to take on and off. They feature an internal locking mechanism that grips the spike of your pin. These are one of the best pin backs for actually keeping a pin secure. These are perfect to use when wearing pins on backpacks, purses, or other garments that don’t come in contact with the skin because of how secure they are.
Most people are familiar with safety pins. These are typically preferred if you wear your pin like crazy and want to ensure that you don’t ever lose it. Since the safety pin is actually attached to the pin, it’s a lot harder for the pin to come off. Safety pins are actually ideal for pins that are to be worn on hats, since they can be fastened sideways.
Do you have a favorite type of pin back? Have you tried them all? Do you use different backs for different things? Let us know in the comments below!
How To Care For Enamel Pins
Whether you’re an avid pin collector, or new to the pin game, it’s important to know how to care for your pins so they can stand the test of time! While it’s always a good idea to find a reputable shop that makes quality pins, there are a few things you can do at home to ensure your pins stay looking brand new!
Just like you would clean your house or your clothes, pins need cleaning, too, to maintain their original shine, and prevent (or remove) rust. It’s important to know whether your pins are made from soft or hard enamel. We do not recommend cleaning soft enamel, but read on to see some tips for cleaning hard enamel pins!
Microfiber cloths should be your new best friends. And, if you don’t have microfiber cloths, any soft cloth and non-abrasive polishing creams should do. The key is to make sure you’re not being too rough, as this could damage the pins!
You can start by removing the pin back from the pin before polishing. When polishing, be aware of the sharp pin! Start with a small spot first, to make sure that the polishing cream you chose isn’t too harsh on the pin (you can do this by using a small cotton swab). Once all is good, you can polish the entire pin, but be sure to be gentle!
Some people have reported having success with using toothpaste to polish pins, however, if you go that route, make sure you test a small area first!
Avoid Harsh Chemicals
When cleaning, storing, or displaying your pins, it’s important to remember to avoid any and all harsh chemicals. If your pins are displayed on a board or hoop or somewhere out in the open and next to objects you regularly clean with chemicals, take extra precaution to ensure that the chemicals aren’t accidentally getting on your pins.
Chemicals and solutions that can be damaging to pin enamel include household and chemical cleaners, and citrus/vinegar solutions. Also make sure that your pins aren’t stored/displayed on wood - the wood could have chemicals that could stain your pins. If you’re storing your pins on wooden shelves or furniture for any reason, simply lay them down on a piece of soft cloth.
The Environment Matters
In order to make sure your pins don’t fade over time, avoid overexposure to light and heat. Not only can repeated exposure to light and heat fade your pins, but it can also affect the durability of your pins.
Some pins also are prone to scratching easily, so if you have a pin collection, make sure you store them apart from one another.
It’s easy to care for your pins when you follow a maintenance routine, and avoid certain things! If you’re careful about how you handle your pins, where you store them, and how you clean them, they’ll be looking as good as new for years to come! Do you have any tips for caring for your pins? Tell us in the comments!
The Ultimate Guide to Gifting Pins
If you’re like most people, you may struggle to find the perfect gift for every single occasion - birthdays, holidays, baby showers, etc. If you’re looking for a unique gift for friends or loved ones, look no further! We’ve put together a few recommendations on how you can use pins for different occasions. Read on to see our selections!
Have you ever wanted to show your appreciation for teachers, but aren’t exactly sure what to get them? You definitely don’t want to be that person who gifts your or your child’s teacher their 100th mug (teachers, am I right!?)
Enamel pins make the perfect gifts! They can wear them, display them in their classroom, or sport them on their purse/backpack.
Here are our favs:
There’s never a shortage of invitations for baby showers, bridal showers, and bachelorette parties. While every mom or bride-to-be appreciates gifts from their registries, why not add a little something extra?
Pins can be small gifts for the future bride or mom, or serve as reminders for them during their pregnancy, wedding planning process, or even for years to come!
These are our favorites:
Do you run a business and have employees? If so, you may be wondering what you can get them to show your appreciation. A pin is a small gesture that has big meaning! Choose a design that fits your employee’s personality, to show him/her you truly care.
Here are some ideas:
Will Work For Coffee Enamel Pin
I Am Doing My Best Spinner Wheel
Too Many Tabs Phone Enamel Pin
Back to School
Adorning backpacks with pins are all the rage these days. Not only are you expressing yourself by choosing pins that reflect you and your personality, but pins serve as a great conversation starter! Use them to stand out among the crowd and truly make a statement.
Here’s some pin inspiration for those back to school days:
Progress Sketchbook Enamel Pin
If you’ve ever wished you could give a unique gift to a family member or friend, we’ve got you covered. Pins are a great option for expressing your kindness by showing your friends and family you truly understand them! Give them the gift of a pin that expresses themselves.
Psst...they also make for great stocking stuffers and Easter basket fillers!
Here are a few pins that make great holiday/birthday gifts:
Mini Hearts Enamel Pin Collection
Pick-Me-Up/Thinking Of You
There’s no better gift to say that you’re thinking about someone than giving them a pin! Pins can be great reminders when someone may be going through a tough time, or can be a fun “just because” gift! Since they’re so small, they’re super easy to ship for those friends/family members who live far away (or in COVID times).
Here are some of our recommendations:
I Am Blooming Spinner Enamel Pin
Inner Child Spinner Enamel Pin
So, the next time you're on the hunt for a unique gift for a family member, friend, or loved one, think about enamel pins! And let us know in the comments what pins you choose!
Enamel Pin Holiday Gift Guide for the Crafters, Artists, and Makers
Enamel pins make for some of the best and most meaningful gifts. If you’re looking for a gift for an artist, crafter or maker in your life, here are some of the best-selling designs:
Color Wheel, Floral Paper Trimmer, & Die-Cutting Machine Interactive Enamel Pin
Two of the most popular interactive pins for artists are the Color Wheel and the Floral Paper Trimmer Enamel Pins. Our newest pin, the Die-Cutting Interactive Enamel Pin, was just released in the October 2020 Collection.
Interactive pins are a fun “spin” on enamel pins! Equipped with moving parts, these pins allow you to interact with them via a spinner, or a piece that moves.
Card Maker, Rainbow Card Stock & Rainbow Envelope Enamel Pins
I started as a card maker in the paper crafting industry in 2014, and it was my greatest inspiration for starting The Gray Muse. I wanted to honor card makers and our love for everything related to paper crafting, particularly collecting supplies (like card stock) and sending happy mail.
What better way to equip your happy mail with a pin that embodies just that?! These are the perfect gifts to send to any fellow card makers.
Paint Brushes, Paint Water Cup, Rainbow Paint Brush, Paint Palette & Slim Color Palette Enamel Pins
One of my favorite hobbies is watercoloring. I just had to create pins that celebrate the art of painting. One of the main reasons I love painting is because it relaxes my mind and allows me to be creative and express myself.
These pins are reflective of that, and allow me to pair my true love for watercoloring with my other true passion...pins!
Rainbow Paint Brush Enamel Pin
Creativity Cart & Crafty Pegboard Enamel Pins
Perfect for those who are constantly creating, the creativity cart and crafty pegboard enamel pins pay homage to those who never stop crafting!
The Creativity Cart was made in honor of the Raskog cart that stores your favorite crafting supplies like paper, stamps, Copic markers, and other essentials, while the Pegboard pin is full of art and crafting supplies displayed with love on your wall!
Both make for super stylish gifts for loved ones.
Creativity Cart — Sold Out
Sewing Machine (Interactive), Needle & Thread, Rainbow Hoop, Botanical Hoop, & Scissors Enamel Pin
Calling all sewing aficionados! These pins are a favorite among the sewing community. From a machine to needle and thread, and even scissors and hoops, there’s a pin (or two) for everyone.
For those who love to sew or appreciate sewing, the interactive sewing machine enamel pin will be a favorite.
Interactive Sewing Machine Enamel Pin
Two Separate Hobbies & Make More Art Frame Enamel Pin
The Two Separate Hobbies pin was created because all creatives know that crafting and collecting supplies are indeed two different hobbies. :) Why not grab a pin to enforce that belief!?
The Make More Art Frame is a perfect gift to remind us that we shouldn't let perfectionism keep us from making art. It features screen-printed white text with the quote by Andy Warhol: "Don't think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it's good or bad, whether they love it or not. While they are deciding, make even more art."
Two Separate Hobbies Enamel Pin
Make More Art Frame — Sold Out
Whether you or a friend are a crafter, artist, or maker, treat yourself and your loved ones to the gift of pins!
Which is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below.