Lapel pins can be the hottest branding tools for your customers and clients. They can be the ultimate tool for their styling and self-expression. How well you get to deliver these conveniences depends on how better you take care of the lapel pins when they are in your hands.
The business guide to maintaining lapel pins
Inspect inventory when the pins arrive
Sometimes orders take weeks or months to get delivered. Depending on where the lapel pins are coming from, there is a high risk of damage occurring during transit. The manufacturer's or shipper's responsibility is to ensure that your consignments are well packaged and properly stored during shipping. Don't sign for damaged pieces.
Conduct a thorough check of the inventory on arrival so you can make the necessary claims if you have to. Document the losses or damages resulting from the shipping process. If you fail to document damages quickly, the losses may never be resolved.
Clean them not once, not twice but always
It is easy to keep the original shine on the stylish handcrafted lapel pins with a regular cleaning schedule. Metal pins must be cleaned with a piece of clothing to strip off dirt and other contaminants from the surface. The right cleaning approach can help to prevent or remove rust from the surface of the pin.
Regularly inspect for damages
As you store and sell your lapel pins, it is easy for your stock to get damaged or scratched. Lapel cleaning should always be accompanied by parts inspection. Have your stock control department regularly check your lapel pin inventory for signs of surface peeling or broken parts. Endeavor to have these fixed with solutions such as refinishing or re-gluing.
Check regularly for signs of damage so you can seek prompt repair:
- Check whether the pin is secure
- Is the lapel pin shiny or dirty and faded?
- Are there visible signs of scratches?
- Is the finish chipping?
Understand what the warning signs mean
If your stock is made of ornamental enamel pins and the surface begins to tarnish, wear off, or become discolored, polishing and waxing may be appropriate. These techniques work well for hard enamel pins, including those with silver or gold finish.
If you have a big stock of lapel pins, you may most likely spend a long time with them, and so waxing is recommendable. The approach keeps off oxidation and corrosion. It keeps them shinier and could even help to accelerate sales. No matter how long it takes to sell them, with regular polishing and waxing, these pieces will look new when a customer buys them.
If the attachments are coming loose, call a professional repairer to fix them back in place. Old inventory should be regularly checked for such structural issues that arise due to age and daily handling. We recommend having your pieces inspected and re-fixed every few months.
Invest in microfiber cloths
DIY enamel lapel pin care techniques include cleaning with a soft toothbrush. A soft piece of cloth is still applicable in this case, especially where you must clean many lapel pins. Consider investing in soft microfiber cloths for this task and schedule daily cleaning. Lapel pins that have been in storage for long may start to develop stubborn stains and dirt. Diluted ammonia works reliably well for such cases.
Your maintenance regime should include scratch removal
The gold or silver finish on your lapel pins may get scratched from daily handling. It can be costly to send such pins back to the manufacturer for retouching. There is a workaround. Use toothpaste to remove the scratches. It might be a time-intensive method, but it works reliably well.
Store lapel pins away from harsh chemicals
Do not use harsh chemicals when cleaning your pins. That may damage the paint or the finishing of your stylish pieces. When they are not on display, keep your lapel pins covered, preferably by a piece of cloth on a clean and dry place.
The most reliable cleaning methods are the easiest
Before you even consider diluted ammonia or toothpaste, go for warm water and mild soap together with a soft piece of cloth. Be sure to rinse and dry your pins thoroughly.
Avoid overexposure to light and heat
Lapel pins with gemstone enhancements and certain die finishes might be susceptible to heat and light. Prolonged exposure to light and heat can lead to fading and color change and negatively impact your button pins' durability. Store your inventory in a cool place and away from excess light.
Do not store your pins on wood
Wood and other treated surfaces could have chemicals that can stain or tarnish your pins. Lay down a piece of soft cloth or paper before storing your lapel pin on wooden shelves Silvery pins fare best when stored in boxes lined with felt. It helps keep away moisture and prevents overexposure to air-this technique removes the need for regular polishing.
Invest in a dehumidifier
To prolong your pins' beauty and lifespan before they reach the customer, keep them in a dry place. Work with a dehumidifier to attain the needed low humidity levels where tarnishing cannot occur. You might notice that custom pins show signs of tarnishing in the summer months. If you have excess inventory dehumidifiers and silica packs can help you keep them looking new for longer.
Keep them apart
Some pieces scratch easily-separate soft enamel from hard enamel lapel pins. Keep the pins with silver finishing away from those with gold finishing. This technique helps to prevent staining and tarnishing -speared by moisture and oxidation-when the pieces are bundled up together.
Put them on rotation
The idea is to avoid overexposure for your display lapel pins. Give them a break by rotating with what's in storage. This technique can limit the risk of fading and tarnishing. Further, it is a chance for your clients to see something new whenever they visit, which can help with sales.
Wipe them at the end of the day
By the end of the day, the pins in your shop would have accumulated dirt and moisture. It is not ideal to leave these on until the next morning. Wipe with a soft piece of cloth to remove moisture, dirt, and other contaminants that could jeopardize your stock's beauty and sparkle.
Get more care tips from the manufacturer
Before you close a deal, get the right maintenance and care information from your lapel pin supplier or manufacturer. They should disclose the different metals and materials used to make the pins and the finishing techniques employed. Only then would you accurately know the right way to clean and take care of them. Magnetic pieces could be problematic when stored with other metals. Copper pins might be more vulnerable to oxidation, while mild polishes could restore the sparkle to the lapel pins with a silver finish.
Allow time to dry
After cleaning your lapel pins dry them thoroughly before storage. Even the smallest amount of moisture remaining on them can destroy your entire stock. We recommend leaving them out to dry for about half an hour after cleaning before putting them back with the rest.
Call the pros if you have to
When you notice structural damages to the pins or their attachment pieces, a professional visit will do more good than a DIY attempt. You want to deliver the best quality lapel pins to your customers and so having issues fixed before selling is a no brainer. If you see deep scratches, broken clasps, or lost parts, it would be good to call the manufacturer or qualified repair guys for professional assistance.
It's vital to have your lapel pins professionally cleaned and inspected at least three times a year for big inventories. Getting your pins serviced regularly will keep them in good shape until the point of sale. A professional can advise you on further maintenance tips.
Make a shop care kit
We recommend having your lapel pin care supplies at a central and accessible place in your shop to ease cleaning and repair. It can be tempting to ignore the maintenance needs of your enamel and ornamental pins if you have to hunt down materials whenever it's time for cleaning. Have a care kit box that contains:
- A soft-bristled brush that can get into crevices
- Soft microfiber cloth for cleaning and drying
- Silver polish and jewelry cleaners for your ornamental pins
- Glue for reattaching broken pieces
- Rubbing alcohol for cleaning hard and metals
Establish a maintenance framework
If you are working with assistants, everyone should be on board with regular cleaning and maintenance of your lapel pin inventory. Offer guidance and education on why that is necessary and provide clear guidelines on how the maintenance should be accomplished.
When using polish: Test a small inconspicuous area of the pin before using it on the rest of the pin.
In storage: Watch out for metals that are more susceptible to tarnishing and prioritize these for every day polishing.
Cleaning solutions: Follow the manufacturer's guidelines. Do not use harsh chemicals or vinegar, for these will damage both the metal and enamel.
Soft enamel pins: No need for polishing soft enamel. Just wipe regularly with a soft cloth.
Hard enamel: Don't use an abrasive brush and chemicals when polishing hard enamel pin
The use of toothpaste: This can substantiate or replace polish if you move a small inventory. Nonetheless, test it on a small place of the pin first before using it liberally.
No polishing machines: Don't use a polishing machine to speed up the process-it will damage your soft enamel pins. Be gentle and consistent: The key to maintaining a quality lapel pin stock is to clean them gently and regularly. Fix structural issues as soon as they occur.
Keep your shop clean and uncluttered
The proper storage of lapel pins requires enough space to prevent scratching, oxidation, and metal contamination. Create the required space by uncluttering your shop and storage area. It should be easy to see the condition of your pieces at a glance.
Stay informed on the status of your stock
Have a plan that streamlines communication between you and your people on the ground. Your shop assistants are better informed about the status of your lapel pins because they interact with them daily in the sales process. Seek regular reports from them to guide your decisions in care and maintenance.
Weatherproof your shop or storage area
It is essential to protect your lapel pins from the elements; otherwise, your stock may end up irreparably damaged from moisture or heat. You can prevent losses by ensuring that the storage and display areas for your lapel pins are weatherproofed, dry, and air-conditioned.
Take your time in cleaning
There could be faster ways for cleaning lapel pins than the painstaking polishing and brushing. Beware though that machine cleaning can lead to rough handling, scratches, and even breakages.
Place signage in your shop
Your customers deserve to know what materials and processes are used in the making of their lapel pins. Placing information that discloses these details for every piece could help your inventory move fast. More importantly, though, this information will work as a guide for your staff in cleaning and maintenance.
For some reason, your lapel pins may not sell as fast as you expected them to. Over time, maintenance costs may soar and hold your business back from its true growth potential. Remodeling is an option that you might want to explore to help your items move fast. Work with a lapel pin maker that can help you recreate your pieces into something else, something more personalized for your type of customers.
The bottom line
Maintaining the beauty and value of your wholesale or retail lapel pins is a concerted effort that requires regular inspection, cleaning, and repairs. It all becomes easier when you work with a lapel pin manufacturer that supports the process with prompt and damage-free deliveries, and professional repair and servicing assistance. That describes us at PinProsPlus. Work with us for beautiful and durable pins that sell fast.
Contact us at (801) 544-1005 to learn more.