What Are Lapel Pins?

What Are lapel Pins? | Custom Pins Now

How do lapel pins work?

Lapel pins work by poking the nail through the clothing and attaching or pushing a small butterfly clutch over the pointed end of the nail behind the clothing.  This keeps the pin securely attached to the clothing and keeps the point from jabbing into your skin.

While the design of the pin may be the interesting part, it seems the clutch on the back is how the lapel pin really works.  After all, it keeps it attached, it protects you from a serious injury, and makes sure nothing gets lost.

Since the clutch offers so much, maybe it should get a little more attention when ordering enamel pins.

There is a myriad of different types of clutches, also known as pin back attachments.

Butterfly clutch

– if there is a standard, this would be it.  It is also known as a military clutch.  It is small metal clutch that you pinch two side wings to release it from clutching the nail.  It is easy to put on and off.  It holds reasonably well under normal wear.  Free with every order.

Rubber clutch

– this is the new kid on the block and has gained popularity in the past 5 years.  It might even replace the butterfly clutch as the standard.  Essentially the same shape as the butterfly clutch but made of rubber. It has a hole just smaller than the nail.  You push it on and pull it off as it is held by friction as the rubber grips the nail. Free with every order.

Deluxe clutch

– of the standard type clutch,this is the king.  It has all the bells and whistles for being so tiny.  It has an internal mechanism that locks the clutch to the nail.  It cannot come off unless the right push/pull motion is made to unlock.  The butterfly clutch and the rubber clutch hold equally well, but can fall off with too much motion or pressure.  The deluxe clutch will not.  It got its name for a reason,and does cost a little more.

Stick pin

– this is an entirely different type of attachment, and is more for women to wear with nicer clothing.  Unlike the thicker, rougher nail put on the back of normal pins that is perpendicular to the metal shield, the stick pin is a delicate, dainty pin that runs parallel to the back of the metal pin.  Typically, it will be 1.5 to 2.5 inches in length.  It is attached by poking it through the clothing, going down, and then poking it back through to the front of the clothing.  A small delicate cap is then put over the point of the pin to protect. It has a much daintier look and feel.

Magnet back

– this is the best of the best for back attachments.  There is no nail involved.It is perfect for those people that have a hard time putting a hole in their clothing.  See our post about “Do Pins Damage Clothes” A magnet is put on the back of the metal shield, then a second magnet goes behind the clothing and the two magnets connect to hold the shield in place.  These magnets are strong and durable and work through most clothing regardless of thickness.

There are other attachments, but we will leave them for another day.

Now that you know what are lapel pins, and how do lapel pins work, here are a couple other interesting questions people often ask.

What are the lapel pins worn by democrats?

A few democratic senators wear a lapel pin described as “warming stripes” meant to bring attention to global warming.  The stripes symbolize rising global temperatures over the past 70 years.  

What are the lapel pins worn by congress?

You might see a Page wearing a lapel pin with a complex design decorated with an enamel shield of stars and stripes, a gold border, and an eagle above the shield.  This pin is exclusive and indicates the Page worked in the House of Representatives and has access to certain areas.

The power of the pin.

Your now an expert on lapel pins.  The only other thing to know is that lapel pins have been around for over one hundred years.  Why because they tell stories, they help people remember, they unite people.  

In our polarizing democracy there is one thing that both Democrats and republicans can agree on and that is wearing a lapel pin.  They may be different pins, but they see the ability of the pin to convey a message far and wide.  We like to call it the power of the pin.

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