Account Navigation

Account Navigation

Currency - All prices are in AUD

Currency - All prices are in AUD
 Loading... Please wait...
C. Sanders Emblems

We're proud to partner with fine organizations across the USA.

  • Elks USA
  • Moose
  • RSVP Stock
  • How To Wear Lapel Pins

    Lapel pins are a classic men’s accessory that have never gone out of fashion. However, not all men are prepared to flaunt it because many are still unsure about how to wear lapel pins in the right way. Done the right way, (these) lapel pins can add a suave, elegant, and unforgettable flair to your outfit. In order to save you the hassle of figuring out how to wear this fashion accessory in the right way, we have put together this ultimate guide at C Sanders Emblems. This tells you everything you would like to know about this small accessory and how to wear it.

    History of Lapel Pins

    Let us first take a look at the long history behind how this accessory came into existence. The history of lapel pins goes hand in hand with the history of enameling technology itself which was developed by ancient Egyptians around 3800 years ago. However, it wasn’t until the 13th and 14th centuries that the Chinese invented and started wearing lapel pins as we know them today. As the popularity of enameling grew, so did the usage of lapel pins. Especially in the Revolutionary War and World War I, the use of this accessory skyrocketed among soldiers in battle and political supporters. However, in the last few decades, lapel pins have invaded every sphere of our social lives. Though it is a complicated accessory to choose, it is very much tied to the context in which it is worn and can prove to be a great addition to the wardrobe.

    Party Chatter version of Lapel Pin’s History

    There is a story regarding the history of buttonhole or boutonniere that often associates its invention with Prince Albert. The story involves his romantic gesture of pinning the flowers given by Queen Victoria on his chest. However, this did not ever happen. In fact, at that time, his jackets did not even have lapels. Lapels have been said to descend from early military uniforms. These uniforms had many holes and buttons. The top button among these was often left undone. This is where the original buttonhole came into being. The popularity of boutonnieres also increased in the 19th century. At that time, flowers (be) came to be associated with manliness making them regular in formal occasions throughout the 1900s.

    Lapel Pin Types

    In order to understand how to style lapel pins correctly as per the occasion and dress, you need to first understand the different types of lapel pins available. Some are more formal than (the) others. Hence, it is important to choose the right one for your suit to ensure complete justice to your style.


    This is the original accessory, a real flower, sported by (the) men on the side or lapels of a suit. It is one of the most formal of all. It is most commonly seen at weddings.

    Flower Lapel pins

    These are the most common lapel pins you will find at any social occasion. They look unique and are diverse enough to be tailored according to the personal taste of the wearer. They are often fashioned with fabrics like satin, silk, velvet, cotton, and linen. Formal events like balls and weddings often have men wearing silk or satin flowers. If you are looking to spruce up your evening rotation or are heading towards the races, cotton is a great choice. They can also come in the form of a pin too.

    Stick pins

    Made from different metals such as copper, gold, or silver, stick pins are a more contemporary choice for the modern man. They are shaped like a thin long needle that pops into the metal fastener neatly. These pins are ideal for making a subtle and elegant statement at any event as they are not as large and obvious as their flower counterparts. This makes them a great choice for both esteemed engagements and casual outings. There is a huge range of metal pin emblems available today making it an ideal choice for showing your inner quirkiness.

    Button Pins Or Mini Badges

    Mini pins or badges are a fun way of personalizing an outfit. While metal pins are for style, a button pin or badge often has a symbolic value. Considered to be a subtle variety of metal stick pins, badges have a small pin protruding from the back of the emblem instead of being attached to a metal long stick pin. They are small, compact, and quirky, often made from enamel. They are one of the easiest pins to be added to your collection so as to add some personality to your outfits. Just like cufflinks, they too are available in a range of designs like precious stone pins, vintage pins, or personalized badges.

    Thank You Button Pins


    Unlike other lapel pins, brooches are fastened to the men’s suits with a hinged pin. They are larger than any of the above pins and often have a vintage element or precious metal. Brooches are usually associated with women’s attire, such as the apropos brooches worn by former Secretary of State Madeline Albright.


    How to Wear Lapel Pins

    Wearing a lapel pin is a pretty straightforward endeavor. Most of the lapel pins are attached to a post that slides through the buttonhole of your jacket and stays there with a clutch back attachment. If the buttonhole is not visible or is on both sides of the coat, it will always go on the left side of your jacket. Traditionalists often like to keep the pin invisible at the back of the lapels. However, there is no distinct rule regarding lapel pins and you can wear them at the front for a more youthful and fun look. In the end, it all comes down to personal preference. However, there are some important rules as per the attire that should always be followed when deciding about the placement of the pin. Let us further understand how to wear pins for different occasions.

    How To Wear A Lapel Pin On A Tie?

    Even if you are not wearing a jacket, you can always wear a lapel pin on the tie. When in this scenario, place the pin in the middle of the tie. However, if you are wearing a tie with a jacket it is best to place it on the left placket rather than on the tie.

    How To Wear A Lapel Pin On A Shirt?

    You can wear a lapel pin on a dress shirt even if you are not sporting either a jacket or a tie. For the positioning, place the pin on the left side near the heart where a coat lapel would usually be.

    how to wear a lapel pin on a shirt

    How To Wear A Lapel Pin On A Blazer

    Lapel pins can be showcased on a more regular basis if you place them on your blazer or coat. They can be used as an everyday accessory. Many formal jackets and coats often feature a buttonhole on the left lapel for a lapel pin. Even if the hole is not there, you can pin the same on your top left lapel or even the collar to impart an element of individuality to your look.

    how to wear a lapel pin on a blazer

    How To Wear A Lapel Pin With A Pocket Square

    Though there are no rules regarding the lapel pins and a pocket square, it is best to have them colour coordinated to some extent. However, as with all the (menswear) accessories, do not be too matching. Take advantage of this piece and be as creative as you want.

    How to wear a lapel pin with a pocket square

    Dos and Don’ts of Wearing A Lapel Pin

    Here, we will talk about the rules of wearing a lapel pin in a formal way, as it is the only place where rules apply. Formally, lapel pins are a men’s accessory that should be used with care for the statement and context of the occasion they are being worn for. Here are some important dos and don'ts regarding how to wear enamel pins.


    • Always wear the pin on the left lapel of the jacket.
    • Always place the pin on the buttonhole of the jacket. This will serve the dual purpose of hiding the hole and keeping the rest of the jacket safe from any punctures by the pin.
    • Always carefully pierce the coat fabric for your pin. For repeated uses, try to use the previous hole so that there are not too many punctures on the lapel.
    • Try and match the design and metal of the lapel pin with other accessories. This makes it both a (s) personal affiliation as well as a fashion statement. Other matching accessories can be cufflinks, watches, belt buckles or others.


    • Never place the pin anywhere else apart from the left lapel.
    • Make sure that the pin is not ridiculously oversized or looks out of place with the remaining part of the outfit.
    • Never use a pin unfitting to the event that you are attending. When you are uncertain of the tone or theme of the occasion, always use a neutral pin.
    • Never wear more than one pin at a time. However, there are certain events like military events that make wearing multiple pins acceptable and expected, it is not so in other situations. Multiple lapel pins on a jacket tend to look cluttered and distracting.

    Choosing A Lapel Pin To Wear

    Now that you understand where you wear the lapel pin, and on which garment, it is time for the finishing touch. Let us now learn how to choose from the wide range of lapel pins available in the market. Though these rules are not clear cut, they act as a thumb rule that can be kept in mind for most occasions.

    Soft enamel pins: These are bright and durable pins. They can be used for several purposes such as children’s clubs, souvenirs, or even school sports teams.

    Hard enamel cloisonné pins: They are mainly used to demonstrate a high status and class. In line with this purpose, these pins are often utilized by the fraternities, sororities, government agencies, corporate brand, country clubs and many others.

    Photo-etched pins: These are great for designs that are very detailed. They act as a great option for participation and membership awards where a lot of wording is required.

    Die Struck pins: These pins are a great option when you are looking for a distinguished and classy look. A two-tone finish makes them perfect as (a) long service pins or medals.

    3D lapel pins: Diecast pins or three-dimensional lapel pins add a more unique look to your personality. You can choose to wear them on many formal occasions such as balls and weddings.

    Metal pins: Match the metal of your pin with the metal on the outfit. This includes your cufflinks, belt, watch, tie clips, or any rings. So, either go all silver or all gold.

    Colorful bright lapel pins: These lapel pins look best when worn on a neutral shirt. This is because the contrast works its magic. However, do not wear clashing colors. In order to avoid doing so, it is best to gain some basic knowledge of common color combinations, or place the pin on a plain dark material.

    Flower pins or pastel pins: They are a more subtle and discreet accessory that works well with most of the other accessories. They are also more playful rather than bolder in their styling.

    Do remember, the point of wearing a lapel pin is the highlighting of physical attributes or to make a statement.

    A Final Word About How To Wear Lapel Pins

    If you are still thinking of an occasion to wear a lapel pin, the short answer is wear it anywhere you want. Today they have arrived in the market in so many designs and styles that you can even wear them in your everyday commitments. Today, children show off their awards on backpacks, and collectors display their pin collections on hats or vests. (You should just know when to use which pin to add that flair to your personality.) Though they may seem a little daunting at first, (but) a little bit of experimentation can work wonders for your look. The number of compliments will surely offset any feeling of being overdressed in your mind. Remember, confidence is the key to making any fashion statement. Contact us at C. Sanders Emblems for any question you make have today!


    We're here to help


    Request a Quote Online