Pin Grading

Did you know? 

Enamel pins are handmade! A worker uses a tiny syringe to fill up the enamel in the pin, every one by hand! This also includes casting the mold to polishing the metal and plating it. A lot of time and work goes into making enamel pins, and so even passing quality pins can never be 100% flawless.

I inspect all my pins myself, and grade according to a pass and fail method. Pins that fail to pass are labeled Seconds and offered at a discount. These are still lovely pins, they just have flaws that are more noticeable.


Passing Pins 

Also known as A-Grade or Standard Grade 

My passing pins are the best the shop has to offer. They are full-price and make great gifts or additions to any collection and look beautiful worn or displayed. However these pins may still include very minor imperfections such as 

  • Slight discolorations or unevenness in the metal
  • Small specks of dirt in the enamel 
  • Slightly uneven areas of under or overfill 
  • Small scratches or scruffs on the metal or enamel 
  • Small imperfections or nicks in the metal plating 

Second Pins 

Also known as B-Grade pins 

Second pins have more noticeable imperfections than the passing grade, but still accurately display their intended design. They are sound for a few dollars less than the standard grade. While their flaws may be noticeable, they still make excellent gifts and are wearable or great for display. As for the flaws they may contain 

  • Larger over or under fill of enamel 
  • Noticeable scratches of scruffs on enamel or metal
  • Missing enamel 
  • Noticeable black marks or dust 
  • Air bubbles in enamel 
  • Off-set screen printing 
  • Area of platting missing 
  • Backing post issues