The team at Studio Dais are inundated with questions on custom made enamel pin badges daily. We answer every email like it’s our first, but we have started to see the same questions come in every week. So we figured we would create a blog post on all the important questions you are asking. The answers here will also apply to most other products, like our PVC badges, woven and embroidered patches, die-struck and die-cast badges and woven labels (to name a few). So let’s get straight to it!
Where Can I Get Custom Enamel Pin Badges Made?
Us of course! Studio Dais has over 10 years’ experience in the manufacturing of custom made items. We started out in clothing and accessories production in 2010, working with small to medium sized clothing brands and a select number of high street retailers. This allowed us to strengthen our knowledge on understanding what quality meant in the big league of promotional merchandise. Around 2015 we moved into hardware such as promotional metal accessories like belt buckles, jewellery and then into promotional merchandise items such as pin badges, woven patches, sporting medals and custom coins. When you decide to work with Studio Dais, you are putting your worries to rest. We know all of our clients are busy, and that’s why we exist, to take on your problems and let you get on with what you enjoy. Simple.
Why Are Custom Made Enamel Pins So Expensive?
Pinning ain’t easy! And to be fair we don’t think they are that expensive. On average, if you buy 100 enamel pins, and they cost you £165, £1.65 per badge is not too bad in the gran scheme.
That’s 100 customers to engage with, if each of those 100 customers is impressed enough to come spend £30 on your website to buy a T-shirt because you gave them a badge, that’s potentially £3000!
Making enamel pins requires a very time honoured and time consuming process. It’s as much an art as it is a science. There are up to 10 different stages to making your custom made enamel pins. Below we will briefly summaries most of them.
The 12 Steps Of Custom Lapel Pin Success!
- ARTWORK CREATION (by you then we prepare for manufacture)
- ARTWORK PROOFING
- MOLDING / DIE STAMP CREATION
- BADGE STAMPING / CUTTING / TRIMMING
- SOLDERING PIN TO BACKS (hand done and very tricky)
- PLATING ALL BADGES IN BATH (nickel, copper, gold etc)
- ENAMELING BADGES BY HAND OR MACHINE (adding colour)
- DRYING, CURING, HARDENING STAGE (can take up to 4 days)
- POLISHING ENAMEL PIN BADGES (this is the most tricky job)
- SCREEN PRINTING ENAMEL PINS (added service to add more detail)
- PACKAGING ENAMEL PINS
- PACKING AND POSTING YOUR CUSTOM MADE BADGES
The 12 Steps To Custom Enamel Pin Badge Success!
These 12 steps could take anywhere from 15 days (rush) to 28 days (standard). So you see, making custom badges yourself at home is not quite as easy as ordering a custom made badge from Studio Dais. When you (yes you) are in the game of business and manufacturing, you have to work months in advance. If you plan to sell custom pins over the Christmas season, you need to start thinking about them in advance, like in August/September time, get your designs into production and receive them by at least end of October / November, then spend at least 15 days preparing your photography, online SEO, advertisements and social media presence to get them sold.
Did you know some high end fashion brands like Prada, Burberry and the like work three years in advance! They anticipate seasonal demands, trends and style that far into the future! We don’t advise you do this!
Can You Make Custom Enamel Pin Badges At Home?
Not really! But… If you could would they be any good? Maybe not. You can make anything at home though, providing you have the right equipment. Lemon squeezers are really good for getting all the lemon juice out of the lemon, but if you have not got one to hand, you need to use your bare dry hands. You might only get half of the potential lemon juice out of the lemon using your hands. Sometimes having the right tools means you are capable of so much more. Making custom enamel pins is no different. Let’s assume you don’t have any of the seriously big heavy equipment we have. You definitely won’t have a CNC cutter or stamping machine. You might be able to make 5 before you gave up with hands bleeding.
Cheap Is Not Always Better. Buy Cheap Buy Twice!
It’s easy to try save money where we can but the reality is you often end up spending more. In the example above, making 5 enamel pin badges in your garage might take you 2 weeks with standard hand tools, and you would need to be a master craftsman and have artistic flair to succeed. Then you have 5 hand made badges in total. For 2 weeks’ work. Let’s assume you worked 5 days a week and 6 hours a day, chopped 1 finger off and cracked all your skin. You might now be tempted to sell each badge for £100 to cover your time and your production costs.
£100 For A Custom Made Enamel Pin Badge?
No one will buy a badge at £100. If you had decided to let us manufacture your 100 pin badges, you could have spent those two weeks working on your brand, the online hustle, growing your social media presence or even learning about crypto currency investments! Then 3 weeks later you receive 100 professionally made custom enamel pin badges that you can sell for £5 or £9 each, making a potential £900! Remember, cheap is not always better (unless you really do want that sweet hand made look of course). Please trust us as your best option for a one to one enamel pin producer and bulk lapel pin supplier with super fast turnaround!
How Much Do Custom Enamel Pins Sell For?
You can set your prices to what you want. On average, £5 to £10 seems to be the average sell price for most modest looking custom pins. Although some can sell as much as £20 or £25 for limited , extravagant or rarer badges. It all depends on your brand positioning and what you think your customers or fans are willing to pay. Sometimes you might just give badges away, as a marketing exercise.
SME, Charity, NGO, Organisation and Institutions
This is a great way to use custom made pin badges if you run an already established business like a coffee shop, clothing store, SME business, NGO or even a larger organisation or charity. You could use your pins for competitions and giveaways to entice customer engagements on social media or simply surprise customers by adding your custom badge designs to their online orders. Maybe keep them on display in your physical or online business and tempt customers to spend more than X amount to receive a free custom branded badge. There is no set rule on how much you should sell a custom pin badge for. This is the joy of running your own business, you make the rules that work for you!
Are Custom Enamel Pins Bad For The Environment?
In a word, no. Single use plastic bottles and single use plastics are though. Every action has a consequence; some are just far worse than others. Manufacturing metal badges and other such products will have some effects on the environment. The consumption of electricity to power machines, the use of raw materials such as various metals, the shipping and transportation etc.
Custom Made Enamel Pin Badges Are Not Single Use!
But our custom made pin badges are not ‘single use’. They are intended to be cherished and held for a very long time (unlike single use plastics!) So we can safely assume that enamel pins and our other metal promotional products as well as our soft goods like woven / embroidered patches and woven clothing labels are not bad for the environment.
What Is The Difference Between Soft And Hard Enamel Custom Pins?
Not much difference to be fair! Hard enamel pin badge at some point in their manufacturing journey look just like soft enamel pins. All modern day hard enamel pins start life as soft enamel pins which are then sanded and polished. Soft enamel pins feel textured and tactile, while hard enamel pins are smooth to the touch. Hard enamel pins require a more time consuming process and require real craftsmanship when it comes to getting them looking good! Sanding and polishing too hard will result in fine scratches, too soft and you can get uneven looking badges. No one wants that!
Soft Enamel Pins vs Hard Enamel Pins
On the picture above, notice the recessed enamel, which sits below the metal ridge lines on soft enamel. It’s not actually ‘soft’ as some people think amusingly. They are called ‘soft enamel’ as they were first manufactured after the classic hard enamel pins known as cloisonné lapel pins. The designation of ‘soft’ was just a way to describe that they were a different manufacturing process as well as overall look compared to the classic cloisonné lapel pins.
Above is a Mini Cooper car made by the soft enamel pin process as you can see the enamel paints are recessed below the die lines. Soft enamel lapel pins are generally cheaper and faster to manufacture than hard enamel pin badges.
Silk Screen Printing
Metal enamel pin badges have certain production limitations. Such as fine details need to be simplified, for example the badge on a footballer’s shirt.
Studio Dais vector
Final Soft Enamel Pin
Or the blue in a person’s eyes is difficult to achieve with badges smaller than 35mm. For the more creative designs with a great amount of detail, we can also screen print fine details onto hard enamel badges only. This is because once the hard enamel badge has been sanded and polished smooth, it then has a flat smooth surface to screen print on, just like screen printing on jersey jumpers or T-shirts. It’s the same process of silk screening.
I Am Not A Designer, How Can I Turn My Good Ideas Into Good Custom Enamel Pin Badges?
Good ideas need good execution! You will be happy to know that Studio Dais offers a free professional design service to get your napkin sketches into production ready designs. However, if you are a designer and good with drawing programs we happily accept your finished Adobe Illustrator or Adobe Photoshop files. No matter what stage you are at, we can work with you to create jaw dropping production ready designs. This applies across ALL of our custom made products we offer. We have a dedicated team of 4 graphic designers with a combined 50 years’ experience between them!
Upon ordering either via our website or direct through email, you will be assigned to one of our designers who we feel is best suited to your requirements (each one has a unique style of their own). We can swing back and forth till you are happy with our designers’ artwork proofs and then once you have signed it off we will then proceed to production stages. Simple!
These are just some of the questions we receive regarding our custom enamel pin badges and their production as well as for all of our other products and services. We hope they have helped you out some, please pass these on to anyone who is wanting to get into making custom pins and other promotional merchandise!
Feel free to contact us HERE if you would like to discuss any new ideas you may have!