How Many Lapel Pins Can You Wear?

October 16, 2023

Lapel pins are a superb way to show your affiliation with anything close and dear to your heart. Whether it's a company, a country or a sports team, it's perfectly acceptable to wear multiple lapel pins. If done right, lapel pins can take your fashion game to the next level.

Adding a lapel pin to any suit is a fun way of enhancing personality and interest to your attire. It can be a cost-effective way to showcase your style but also a great way to display to others, things or causes that are so dear to your heart. Sometimes referred to as suit pins, lapel pins are not designed to distract others. Instead, they're meant to add a subtle air of class and elegance to what should already be a stylish and well-fitting suit. But how many lapel pins can you wear? Well, let's find out.

It's faultlessly acceptable to wear more than one lapel pin if one is decorative and another is either symbolic or promotional. In other words, there's nothing wrong with wearing a decorative lapel pin, a patriotic lapel pin, and a promotional lapel pin all in one suit. It's also acceptable to wear many lapel pins if they show your position or progression in an organization. For instance, you can wear multiple lapel pins to show your achievements or advancement in a military organization.

Here are a few guidelines on how to wear multiple pins. But before going into that, let's highlight some important details.

Table of Contents

What is a Lapel Pin?

A lapel pin is essentially a small pin worn on a lapel jacket. Although lapel pins are principally decorative or ornamental, they can be used to show the wearer's close affiliation with an organization, a country, a sports team, a club or even a cause. Lapel pins are also a superb way of showing the wearer's class or achievement in various areas such as membership in an organization, military service, employee recognition awards, professional association, and patriotism.Lapel pins come in various forms and sizes and can be attached to the suit in several ways. The backend of the lapel pin is the part that is attached to the jacket and is as important as the front. In addition to ensuring that the lapel pin is perfectly held in place, the backend can be a great way to customize the lapel pin to make it even more outstanding.

How to Wear Multiple Pins

There are strict rules that specify how to wear multiple lapel pins and how they should be placed. As such, let's walk you through how you can do it perfectly.

Attaching the Lapel Pins

Most lapel pins have a metallic face, a short point, and a detachable backend. The best way to attach a lapel pin on your jacket is to remove the backend, push the pin into your lapel (jacket) until the short point appears on the other side and then reattach the backend.Keep in mind that the lapel pins must sit upright on your lapel. In other words, they should never be upside down or appear at awkward angles. This is generally because having your lapel pins in an upside-down position, especially if they're symbolic, may be offensive or show negative sentiments particularly to those who hold these organizations dear.You should, therefore, tightly clasp the lapel pins on the back so that they do not rotate when you're in motion. Again, it would be very inappropriate to wear a symbolic lapel with the main intention of being disrespectful to others. Unless the lapel pin is for decorative purposes, the main reason for wearing symbolic lapel pins is to show how the organization or cause represented on the lapel pin is so dear to your heart. As such, do not wear it if means nothing to you. For instance, it would be a faux pas to wear a military lapel pin if you've never been in the army or if you're not closely related to the owner.

Proper Placement of Your Lapel Pins

It's essential to note that the proper placement of your lapel pins can depend on your clothing, what the pins represent, and your gender. Just like you would wear a single lapel pin, multiple lapel pins should be worn on the left. The main reason why lapel pins are worn on the left is because we generally use our right hands for handshakes and other things, so having your lapel pins on the right would only mean that they're covered when you're using your right hand. Again, wearing the lapel pins on the right will make them look wrongly positioned and this may derail your elegance.We must, however, note that there are instances where wearing your lapel pins on the right may not be a serious faux pas. For instance, you can wear your lapel pins on the right if you're left-handed and generally use your left hand to greet people. Again, you can also wear your lapel pins on the right if you are observing strict codes that instruct you to wear the lapel pins on the right as they do is certain military organizations.

Here is how to properly place your lapel pins on various clothing.

  • On a Jacket - The lapel pins should be placed on a suit or a jacket if you're wearing one. They should typically go on the left side of the jacket, just near the heart especially if they symbolize important causes to you.
  • On a Tie - If you are not wearing a jacket but sporting a tie, you can attach the lapel pins toward the middle of the tie. It's, however, not-so-appropriate to wear multiple lapel pins on a tie as they may seem out of place and messy. But this doesn't mean you cannot wear a lapel pin or two in the middle of a tie unless they're a total mismatch.
  • On a Shirt - If you are wearing neither a tie nor a jacket, you can place the lapel pins on the left side of the shirt near your heart.

We, however, have to stress that it's always appropriate to wear your lapel pins on a jacket rather than anywhere else.

Do's When Wearing Many Lapel Pins

The most important thing when wearing multiple lapel pins is to ensure that they're displayed in a manner that makes you most comfortable. You should also make sure that the lapel pins are arranged perfectly and respectfully, especially to those around you. Here is what you should do.

  • Make sure that you first wear the jacket to allow you to see where the lapel pins go on the jacket.
  • You should use your tie knot as guidance on where to place your lapel pins. For instance, the first lapel pin should be marginally below the tie knot and an inch from the edge of your jacket's lapel.
  • The second lapel pin should be next to the first.
  • The third lapel pin should be below the first and the fourth below the second.
  • It can be very fashionable to match the metal, color, and design of your lapel pins to your other jewelry and accessories such as your watch, belt buckle or cufflinks.

The Don'ts of Wearing Multiple Lapel Pins

  • You should not overcrowd your jacket with lapel pins unless they all commemorate an achievement such as in a military organization.
  • Do not puncture your jacket with too many pinholes.
  • Do not place the lapel pins anywhere else other than on the left side unless you're following certain strict codes.
  • The lapel pins shouldn't be ridiculously oversized or feel out of place with the rest of your outfit.
  • Avoid lapel pins that have religious, political, militaristic, sporting, social or any other message that's disrespectful or unfitting to the event that you are attending. If you're not sure of the theme or tone of the event, neutral lapel pins can be the best way to go.
  • Keep in mind that using many lapel pins can be distracting and cluttered, especially if wrongly done. As such, do not wear many lapel pins if they don't make you comfortable.

Wearing Multiple Lapel Pins Your Way

As we noted earlier, lapel pins are a superb and fun way to enhance your fashion and elegance. This means that you can choose to break the rules and wear them your way as long as you do it sensibly and respectfully. Whether you want to use your lapel pins to make a social or political statement, add a pop of fashion or color to your outfit or want to display your hobbies, causes or interests, do not let the rules limit you as long as you're not attending a formal event.You, however, have to be conscious of the attention or repercussions that your lapel pins might bring. If you're trying to make a political or social statement using your lapel pins, make sure that you do it in a way that will not send harm your way or leave you on the wrong side of the law. For example, do not wear Nazi lapel pins where they're banned as this may send a very wrong political message.No matter which style you choose, lapel pins are a superb way of adding a style quotient to your already superb fashion. Just wear them sensibly and respectfully and you'll radiate elegance.If you're looking to make custom pins, you can request a free quote and free design here.

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