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Soft Enamel//Most popular As Low as $0.55

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Offset Printed//Glossy finish As Low as $0.56

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Hard Enamel//High perceived value As Low as $0.70

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3D Cast//Intricate outer shapes As Low as $0.58

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Flag PinsAs Low as $0.55

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Volunteer Pins11
Volunteer Pins As Low as $0.55

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sport pins 10
Sport Pins As Low as $0.55

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vivipins Employee lapel pins 10
Employee Pins As Low as $0.55

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Custom Lapel Pins: Exclusive Guide (Updated 2019)

This guide will teach you everything that you need to know about custom lapel pins.

The secret behind no minimum quantity orders.

Why some manufacturers can offer better prices?

Why some companies can delivery fast?

How to find the right supplier?

Lets get started…

custom lapel pins exclusive guide


Title What is lapel pin

Chapter 1

What is a lapel pins?

Main Applications of lapel pins

Chapter 2

What are the main applications for lapel pins?

Pin Design Tips

Chapter 3

Pin design tips

Pin Types

Chapter 4

Pin types

Pin Color

Chapter 5

Pin color


Chapter 6

Pin size

Custom order with no minimum quantity

Chapter 7

Custom order with no minimum quantity

Turn around time

Chapter 8

Turn around time

Right pin manufacturer

Chapter 9

Right pin manufacturer

Why some factories have better price? (2)

Chapter 10

Why some factories have better price?

Chapter #1:

What is a lapel pins?

A lapel pin is a small pin worn on clothing, or most often, it is worn on the lapel of a jacket

That is why we call it lapel pin.

lapel pins meaning

So, no matter if it is a soft enamel pin, a printed pin, a Die Struck pin, or a  Cloisonne’ Hard Enamel Pin, all of them can be referred to as a lapel pin.

But why do you hear about enamel pins so often? In fact, enamel pins are the type most often searched for through Google.

vivipins google ga datas

The reason is: most of customers prefer custom enamel pins, especially soft enamel pins, which tend to be the most popular.

chapter #2:

What are the main applications for lapel pins?


Thanks to the online lapel pin ordering systemit has become easier than ever before to order custom pins.

You can use custom lapel pins as a reward for your staff; or maybe you can simply sell your design; and sometimes, you can even use them for trade with others.

And in this chapter, I will introduce the top applications for custom-made lapel pins.

main use and application of lapel pin
vivipins awards2


When one of your team members reaches an important milestone, a custom lapel pin will give them the proof that they need to know that they are a valued member of the team. 

And customer service pins, years of service pins, recognition & service pins, motivation & teamwork pins, and academic pins are different types of customized award pins.

vivipins festival pins

Festivals & Events

A custom lapel pin is a great souvenir for events and festivals.

Whether it is worldwide business conference, a day of commemoration, your wedding, or a birthday party, providing customized lapel pins allows people to remember that experience for a lifetime

vivipins branding3

Corporate Branding

Custom-made lapel pins with your company’s logo would most certainly increase brand visibility.

Give the personalized pins to clients as a thank you, hand them out at conferences, or provide them to your employees.

vivipins charity pins


The best way to raise awareness about your charity or non-profit is through a custom pin. Put your brand and your cause on the pin, and then give them away as gifts for people who make donations.

vivipins trading lapel pins

Trading Pins

Custom trading pins don’t need to be for sports teams! You can make custom lapel pins with your favorite celebrity, music artist, or television show to trade with other enthusiasts.

vivipins specialty pins

Specialty Clubs

Whether you are in a sorority, a shrine club, or another fraternal organization, custom club pins will let everybody know who your members are.

vivipins military pins

Custom Military Pins

As an ideal way to honor the camaraderie of a military unit, you can design custom pins based on your squad, rank, or mission. Keep the servicemen and servicewomen in mind with pins that support their military service.

vivipins school pins

School Pins

From kindergarten to university, every school can benefit from having their emblem on a top-quality custom pin. Students, faculty, and parents can wear them to show their support for their institution.


The whole point of a custom-made lapel pin, is that you can put anything on it! From gifts, to art, to branding for a business, you can use a custom-made lapel pin to showcase exactly who you are.


 Pin design tips


In this chapter, you will lean about tips to help you design your own pin.  

Be sure to note that there are different requirements for custom enamel pins and printed pins.

The below knowledge will help you avoid mistakes in the design process.

pin design tips

1. Pin design for enamel pins

If you look into the enamel pins, you can find that they contain many small blocks, divided by a metal die line.


soft enamel line

This is the way that manufacturers actually make custom-made enamel pins:

– Stamp the metal base& create small blocks with the die metal line.

– Add the enamel to the small block.

The metal line will stop the enamel from mixing. 

So, the artwork for your custom enamel pin design should:


1.) Have strong, bold & simple lines

The bold line would turn out to be the die metal line in the pin.

Why simple lines?

As the metal line is stamped by mold, you cannot create very tiny and complicated lines because they may have trouble showing up.

2.) Avoid color gradients

vivipins color gradients logo design

Each individual block can only enamel a single color, so enamel pins can not produce the effect of color gradients. Like Instagram logo.

That is why you should avoid color gradients in your design.

3.) Keep it simple

Keep lettering and details to a minimum.

As enamel pins are similar to jewelry, and not like ad buttons or billboards, you do not have too much space to express details.

2. Pin design for offset-printed pins

Sometimes your pin design may have a color gradient, with many details included in tiny lines.


And more importantly, you do not want the factory designer to change your design.  

In that case, you can choose offset-printed pins.

Offset-printed pins work by simply printing your design to the metal base, and then covering it with epoxy resin to protect the print.

So, there are less limitations for offset-printed lapel pins.


3. Digital files that you can submit to the pin supplier

In fact, you can submit any kind of file to the supplier including: JPEG, JPG, GIF, PNG, EPS, PDF, PSD, AI, BMP, TIF, TIFF, and more!

Just make sure that your artwork is clear enough.

But most manufacturers prefer AI format, which will save them crucial time when preparing the production-ready file.

4. Size of the artwork file

Custom lapel pins come in a number of different sizes, but what about the design artwork?

No limitation!

The designer can change your artwork to fit the pin size that you need.

But remember, the bigger the design, the clearer it’ll be. So, just make your file is as big as possible.

That is why they prefer vector graphics, like an AI file that can be easily enlarged.

5. Changing artwork after submission

After you submit your artwork, the pin supplier should send you production-ready artwork for your approval.

If you find something wrong, or dislike the design, just ask them to change it.

You deserve 100% satisfaction. Why not?

But you would need to avoid changing the design after the file approval process and order confirmation process is complete.


After the production-ready artwork is approved, they will begin the production process. If you ask them to change the artwork, you would be required to pay the difference for that part of the manufacturing process.


Conclusion for pin design:

1. Prepare a clear file for the pin supplier.

2. Keep your design as simple as possible.

             3. Use simple lines and avoid color gradients for enamel pins.

              4. Avoid changing the design after the production-ready artwork is approved.


Learning About Different Pin types


If you find yourself asking the question, “what is the difference between hard enamel pins and soft enamel pins” or “why should I choose offset-printed pins, this guide will clear everything up for you!

different pin type hard enamel pins vs soft enamel pin

Hard Enamel Pins – The Highest Quality

Hard enamel pins offer jewelry-quality design and an incredibly smooth finish, while still being durable and long lasting.

Key Features:

  • Extremely high-quality manufacturing
  • Smooth, glass-like exterior
  • Long-lasting and durable composition
vivipins hard enamel pins

Best Uses:

The Hard Enamel Pins can be used for everything from building brand awareness to commemorating an important milestone, making them the most versatile pins.

How They Are Made:

To ensure the high-quality design of the pin, they require expert, handcrafted details, which are then filled with hard enamel pastes by hand before being kiln-fired at extremely high temperatures. Then, they are polished using high-grade stone before being plated and sent off as the finished, jewelry-quality product.

Production time:

7-15 business days after art approval.


Price: ☆☆☆☆☆

Quality: ☆☆☆☆☆

Durable: ☆☆☆☆☆

Soft Enamel Pins –Vibrant and Versatile

Soft enamel pins feature a 3D-like surface that includes a textured surface with very fine details.

Key Features:

  • Bright, brilliant colors
  • Textured metal detailing
  • Fine intricate crafting
vivipins employee pins

Best Uses:

Soft Enamel Pins are perfect to attract attention, making them an ideal choice for trading, giveaways, branding, and more!

How They Are Made:

First, each soft enamel pin is hand enameled before being kiln-fired. Next, they are hand-polished and plated to ensure each pin is a top class product, while still being priced affordably.

Production time:

6-9 business days after art approval.


Price: ☆☆☆☆

Quality: ☆☆☆☆

Durable: ☆☆☆

Die Struck Pins – High Class Look

Die Struck Pins include intricate detailing combined with a first class finish that makes them very attractive.

Key Features:

  • Jewelry-quality finish
  • High-quality look
  • Affordable Priced
custom lapel pins landing page die cast

Best Uses:

Die Struck Pins look so close to valuable material, that they are the perfect choice for awards, gifts, or to mark special occasions.

How They Are Made:

Custom Die Struck Pins are made by sandblasting the background before polishing the raised areas to offer a stark contrast that works to highlight the design.

Production time:

6-8 business days after art approval.


Price: ☆☆☆☆

Quality: ☆☆☆☆

Durable: ☆☆☆

Offset-Printed Pins – Perfect for intricate designs!

Also known as photographic lapel pins, they use offset printing to capture detailed designs that include colors, gradients, and other intricate designs.

Key Features:

  • Use offset or laser printing process
  • Capture detailed designs
  • Scratch-free epoxy finish

Best Uses:

Ideal for any design that includes gradient colors or shading. Offset-printed pins are the best way to capture sports logos, business logos, or other pins to be traded.

How They Are Made:

The pins are first cut from a metal sheet to get the right shape and size. Then, a base color is spread on the pins before the design is printed onto the pins and coated with a clear epoxy that keeps them scratch-free.

Production time:

 7-15 business days after art approval.


Price: ☆☆☆☆

Quality: ☆☆☆☆

Durable: ☆☆☆

chapter #5:

Pin Color


Color quantity is one of the top-4 important factors that affect the price of a pin.

The more color, the more expensive.

That’s another reason for why you need to keep your design simple.

pin color
vivipins color number


As per our experience,


80% of design use 3-5 color,

10% use 1-2 color,

5% use 6-8 color,

5% use more than 8 color

While your artwork may have more than 8 colors, you would need to contact the particular pin supplier to verify the price.

Color difference.

You would find that, quite often, the real products’ color is different than what you had seen on the website.



Color difference. As the brand, setting, or age of the PC/phone monitor is different, you could potentially see tremendous differences in color.


vivipins color difference

(sheet from qualitylogoproducts)


But how can you avoid this?

Use Pantone color or CMYK color to choose the color number.


Enamel pins  Use Pantone color.



What’s Pantone color?

The Pantone Matching System (PMS) is a color system used in a variety of industries, but primarily printing.

You can use pantone color finder  to find the right color number.

And most of the time, the pin company will do this for you.


Offset-printed pins use CMYK Color


vivipins CMYK Printing

What is CMYK?

It is known as the four-color process. Like inkjet printers, cyan, magenta, yellow, and black inks are used to print various colors.

And the pin maker will also use the CMYK printing process for your order.

CMYK vs. PMS (Pantone Matching System)

chapter #6:

What is the best pin size for your design?


You have your design and you’re ready to order your custom pins.

But what size should you choose for your personalized pins?

1 ; 3/4 or smaller?

In this chapter, I will show you how to choose the right size.

pin size

Pin size will affect the price

The bigger the size, the more expensive.



#Production cost:

Larger pins would need more material and time to customize.

Some big size pins would need 2 pin backs, big size box to package.

#Freight Fee

Larger size is more heavy, and then freight fee would be higher.

Pin size will affect the detail of your design 

Small size limits you to less detail. 

Big size increases your threshold for detail.


0.75″ – 1.25″

Great for simple designs, but with less detail

Suitable for

Company Logos

Sponsor Pins

Promotional Pins

Freebie Pins


1.50″ – 2.00″

Average pin size, good for medium to high-detail pins.

Pins with Text

Medium – High Detail

Good for Most Requirements


2.25″ – 3.00″

Great for Pin that really Pop!

Pins with High Detail

Pins with Complicated or Detailed Design

Artist Pins

Showcase Pins


This is precisely why the manufacturer will always ask you to specify the size of your custom pin.

Average team trading pin size is 1.75″  ; 90% of teams order 1.50″, 1.75″ or 2.00″

The following pin size comparison guide should help you to get to know the size better!


chapter #7:

Custom lapel pin orders with no minimum quantity. 

You only need 20 personalized pins for your event, 

but you find that most of the custom lapel pin manufacturers require at least 100 pieces as the minimum order quantity.

Why can’t they offer a no minimum order requirement?

How can you find the factory who can make a custom lapel pin without a minimum quantity requirement?

You find the answer in the following resource:

custom lapel pins no minimum icon
custom lapel pins no minimum post
Check Out This Resource

chapter #8:

Turn around time



Short intro:

No matter if you have an urgent order or not, you want to have your custom lapel pin fast, right?

This chapter will teach you how to find the right pin manufacturer who can delivery your pin fast.

turn around time for lapel pin production

How fast can the pin company produce your custom pins?

Quick Ship Pin (4 ~ 10 days)


How to ship a pin as fast as 4 working days?


They have stock die struck brass pins (have been plating, or stamping info yet).

And your design will simply be digitally printed (off-set printing) to the pin.

stock pins mold


  1. You can custom your pin fast.
  2. The price should be much cheaper. If the price as high as a custom shape pin, that is not a fair price
  3. Small order service should be available


  1.  Cannot ordera custom-shape pin.
  2. Cannot produce a custom-madeenamel pin.
  3. Cannot produce a custom 3D cast pin orDie-struck pin. 
  4. Limitationson sizes and shapes.

How fast can the pin company produce custom-shape pins or enamel pins?

Standard production time for most pin companies: 15~20 working days.

If you need an urgent order, they can typically finish in 5~10 working days.


Why some manufacturers produce pins fast, but others slowly?

  1. Priority or not?

As you know, the factory would arrange their pin orders in a queue. Most pin factories need to produce custom-made pins every day. If they set your order as a priority, they can ship your order faster!


  1. Production management and supply chain.

Some factories can produce pins faster because they have:

– Better production management

– More automated machines

– Longer work times (some even work through the weekends, and graphic design teams that work until 2am)

– Their factory is located in a lapel pin town


What is the fastest speed to make a custom-shaped pin?  

As per our experience, we can produce pins (small order) in 3 working days.

(If you can find a pin manufacturer that can make custom pins faster, just leave a comment below).

chapter #9:

How to find the right pin manufacturer?



Short intro:

It is easy to find tons of custom lapel pin manufacturers, 

but how do you find the right pin manufacturer? 

This resource will show you how you can find the right pin manufacturer, and you can use it today! 

custom lapel pin manufacturer
vivipins pin manufacturer
Check Out This Resource

chapter #10:

Why some factories custom pins cheaper?

Short intro:

You would find that some pin factories can offer better prices, and faster turn around times, without sacrificing quality.

In this chapter, I will tell you why this happens.


You know that Detroit is motor city, right?

It is also a major lapel pin manufacturing hub (we can call it a lapel pin town).


In that lapel pin town, there are many pin factories, plating factories, molding factories, and printing factories.

(Open-mold, plating, and printing are important processes while factories personalize lapel pins).

And the custom lapel pins produced in this town are much cheaper, and delivery times can be much faster.

Automated Coloring to improve productivity


Three reasons

1. These towns have cheaper payroll costs 

As the plating and printing processes have the potential to pollute the environment, (we haven’t adopted the technology needed to avoid pollution yet), they cannot build these kinds of factories in affluent areas.


    2. Save Big on FreightFees

As all the factories are in the same area, you can save money on freight fees. 

That is why some factories need 3 weeks or even 1.5 months to personalize your pin – and the price is high.

They need to send their pins to plating factories in other cities to do the plating, and then send them back to finish the rest of the process because their area does not allow the plating process.


3. Factory Specialty

In a lapel pin town, those factories are focused on their business, which will make prices more competitive.

It will play like this:

Better price — > more orders;  More orders — > better price

That is why the factories that we invest in are in that lapel pin town.


Want to know how to make enamel pins? You can click here 

If you want to find a lapel pin factory right now, or need more pin factories as a backup, just contact our sales representative. And remember, as our factory is located in the pin town, price, turnaround time, and quality is competitive!

Want to order your custom pins now?

Custom lapel pin in minute with online ordering system

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Need a new pin manufacturer as a partner?

It is welcome to contact us, test our company, to see whether we can be the right one. Risk-free.


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