For people who want something to do in their spare time, pin trading and collecting is an excellent choice. Custom trading pins are one of the most popular collectibles worldwide. With thousands of pins passing from owner to owner around the world, the pin trading hobby is surely brimming with activity. Thousands of enthusiasts buy, sell, and exchange pins with their fellows, constantly making their collections more exotic and stunning.
What fascinates pin collectors is the mind-boggling variety of custom trading pins. Pins have designs based on varying themes as diverse as religion or sports. Due to the different materials and production processes available to manufacturers, pins also vary in style and composition. Some processes, especially those involving the application of enamel, produce areas of rich colors outlined by lines of shiny metal, simulating a 3D look. Other processes, such as those which employ printing methods, may create pins which have a more simplistic design.
In addition, some custom trading pins may come with embellishments. For example, dangler pins have pieces which hang on the bottom of the pin, while bobble pins have components which can move back and forth and a manner similar to bobble head figurines. Other moving parts, like spinners or sliders, can also be found in some trading pins. There are pins which are more exotic. These include color changing pins and lighted pins, which have LED lights installed within them.
Various places and events are hotspots for pin collectors. Amusement parks have served as venues where collectors of all degrees can trade pins with each other. In particular, has served as a Mecca for collectors everywhere. Recurring events, such as the Olympic Games and various sporting events, are also attract collectors. Organizers, aiming to increase the popularity of their events and cater to a wider audience, sell or give away pins designed after the athletes, the teams, or the events themselves. These pins are also a way for sports fans to show off their support for a certain player or team.
When it comes to collecting trading pins, collectors have different motives. The majority simply want to experience the thrill of acquiring new pins and seeing their collection grow. Some people also join the pin trading hobby to become friends with other like-minded people. Being amazed by the different designs of custom trading pins, they are motivated to search for more varieties of pins to add to their collection. They especially seek out pins which have uncommon characteristics, such as those with attached embellishments.
Aside from those with a casual interest in pin collecting, there are some who take it even further. These collectors are those who devote more time and effort in building their pin collection. They prepare specialized storage devices for their pins so as to preserve their condition. Aside from going to common pin collecting venues like amusement parks, they also participate in auctions and other high-end activities. Through intense searching, they are usually able to find extremely rare pins, which other casual collectors may never encounter.
Almost all collectors hope to find limited edition pins or vintage pins, as those pins can make their collections stand out. Their rarity increases their value relative to other trading pins. In addition, vintage pins handled carelessly become damaged over time, lowering their value. Those vintage pins which manage to remain in mint condition can be sold at ridiculously high prices. One of the world’s most expensive lapel pins was once sold for £112 in 2011.
This desire to find special pins, as well as the thrill of finding new designs and discovering new friends, is what motivates collectors of custom trading pins to continue with their craft and improve their existing collections, testaments of their dedication to the hobby of pin collecting.