5 Creative Ways to Design Lapel Pins

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In the past few years, lapel pins have had a strong resurgence in popularity, becoming incredibly trendy in a variety of communities. Whether it’s underground punk music, cosplaying fandoms, or businesses, lapel pins have become a very hot ticket item. They’ve also brought on a wave of artists and designers who have begun creating wonderful designs that not only push the artform itself but continue to inspire others to do the same.

However, it can feel difficult sometimes to know just where to start when creating a lapel pin design due to how expansive it can be. After all, when you’re seemingly only limited by your imagination, where do you begin?

In this article, we’ll be sharing with you 5 tips for designing lapel pins that will help you get off your feet and into a creative atmosphere.

1. Put Limitations on Yourself

Even for those who have a good deal of experience with designing pins, letting your imagination get ahead of you can sometimes be an issue. To prevent this from happening, it’s helpful to put limits on yourself. For example, if you’re designing a pin to represent a fandom, perhaps sticking to one character at a time is a good way to pace yourself. Another situation might be if you’re designing a large character—putting just the face of the character might stand out clearer on a lapel pin than their entire body. It might seem like an odd practice to put limitations on yourself, but this can be an incredibly helpful way to boost your overall creativity.

2. Design According to Your Budget

Lapel pins are typically factory made but are still very intricate products. This is why the price of any given product tends to fluctuate depending on how complicated the design is. This is typically attributed to the amount of colors used, how many lines are in the design, and which colors are used. It’s useful to familiarize yourself with the general principles of lapel pin pricing so you don’t end up paying much more than you anticipated for a certain pin.

3. Design for Bulk

Because lapel pins are most efficiently ordered in bulk, be sure to make a design that makes sense to exist in large quantities. For example, if it’s a specific birthday message to someone, perhaps making it a universal sentiment will make it more likely to be a successful pin. Individuality is nice, but good lapel pin designers understand how to make something that feels individual but can be applied to many different situations.

4. Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Opinions

If you’re interested in making lapel pins, chances are you’re not just making them for yourself. By definition the artform is communal due to the large quantities required when making them, so it’s important to remember that you’re designing for a community. This means that making what you want to be important, but it might help to get input from those who will be your target audience. Because of this, don’t be afraid to show your design to others while you’re working on it to get input—you’d be surprised at how much helpful insight they will have!

5. Less is Always More

The biggest piece of advice any lapel pin designer can hear is that less is truly more. It’s very easy to let your mind run free while designing a pin, but this can sometimes miss the point of designing a good pin. Complexity is typically a double-edged sword—sure, it opens the door to more interesting, intricate designs, but it also makes it more difficult to see designs from a distance. By making simpler designs and sticking to a more limited color palette, you can make more lapel-appropriate designs and subsequently some wonderful pins!

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