How To Make Enamel Pins?

Written by Robin Brown on May 10, 2021
This guide will help you turn your designs into eye-catching enamel pins step by step.

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HOW TO MAKE ENAMEL PINS?

Step 1: Prepare your pin design

Tip 1 : Make sure that the linework is crisp and connected.
These lines are going to be what separates the colors. These colors are manually poured onto the pin so having thick enough and crisp lines are essential.

Tip 2 : Make sure that the design is simple enough.
Working on something that is 1 to 2 inches in size is hard enough. Having too many lines can make it hard to pour in the colors. Trust me, you don’t want to waste weeks going back and forth with the pin manufacturer doing edits. The simpler the design, the faster they can finish your pins..

Tip 3 : Do not use small texts.
This will not be readable particularly on a pin that is 1 inch small.

Tip 4 : Try to use bold lines and colors if possible.
As mentioned, the pins are quite small. Seeing the details from afar is almost impossible if you use thin lines. Muted colors are also less visually appealing. Unless you are working with pastel items, the bolder the colors the better.

Tip 5 : Do not use shading on your design.
It cannot be captured properly on a pin. You will just be wasting your time because the manufacturer will have you remove those eventually. They will not make enamel pins that are not designed according to their specifications. The same goes for transparent colors and gradients. Just stick to solid colors.

Tip 6: Make sure that you use the Pantone color matching system
In order to communicate what colors, you want for your custom enamel pins. Most manufacturers use this system to get the right colors. You don’t want 50 copies of a pin that doesn’t match your original design, right? .

Step 2: Decide enamel pins material

Hard Enamel Pins

Hard enamel pins offer jewelry-quality design and an incredibly smooth surface, while still being durable and long-lasting. The pins are made from iron metal that has been died struck. The manufacturer adds the enamel before the actual plating is done. And then they polish the surface for several times.

Because each color must be added separately, the hard enamel pin tends to be pricier but is more durable. The multiple polishing processes do not allow for highly-detailed designs.
hard enamel pins image

Soft Enamel Pins

Soft enamel pins feature a 3D-like surface that includes a textured surface with very fine details. Your design is stamped onto the iron metal. It is then cut to size. Afterward, the badges are attached to the metal plating. The enamel is then added onto the recessed spaces. The pins are baked to harden the enamel.

Soft enamel pins have bumpy surfaces unless an epoxy coating is applied to it. It allows for more details to be included in your design. It tends to be cheaper too.
soft enamel pins image

Step 3: Decide how many pins you need

Most of the enamel pin manufacturers would ask you to order 100 pcs as the minimum order quantity. If you want to low down risk, you can also work with a few companies which can custom sample pins such as vivipins, wizardpins.

Step 4: Find the right pin company

Once you have your design ready to be sent to the manufacturer, the next step is to find the right manufacturer. There are 7 points for you to find a right enamel pin manufacturer
-1 Do they produce the type of pin you want (hard or soft enamel)?

It is better to choose the vendor who can produce hard enamel pins; soft enamel pins; 3D cast; Die Stuck; off-set printing.
-2 What is the minimum order quantity for the custom enamel pins?

Most of the vendors required MOQ 100 pcs for the custom pins. But most of the time, you just need a small quantity for your design
-3 How long will it take to get the pins made and shipped?

Normally, it will take the vendor 2 weeks to produce the pins and 3-5 working days to deliver your pin. In case you need urgent order, confirm the delivery date before you place your order
-4 How fast the manufacturer responds to your queries?

Do they answer your call immediately? Do they respond to emails within the day? The faster their response, the higher you can put them on the list of manufacturers to consider.
-5 Any real customer reviews?

Whether they have a third-party reviews, and what other customers say about this company?
-6 Ask to see some actual samples of their work?

Some pins might look great on a photo but not in real life. Nothing beats having the actual product in your hand to really check out its quality. Check if the vendor was able to copy the exact color of the submitted design.
-7 Will they send digital proof before production?

Send digital proof of your design will avoid mistakes before production
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Article written by Robin Brown
Robin Brown is part of the content team at Vivipins where he develops resources to help customers start and grow their own businesses.
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