Are Radical Pin Badges The New Slogan T-Shirt?

by MR Magazine Staff

In a world of throwaway Primark slogan tees, a quiet subculture of badge makers are making radical statements through pins. From Planned Parenthood to Black Lives Matter, or just your favourite meme, these designers are putting pop culture to the metal. “I’m in a Facebook group called Black Pin Maker League — it’s like a secret society.” Kirby Afua is describing a creative online community of illustrators, artists and makers — specifically pin makers — who are at the forefront of a community quietly making waves. She’s reeling off some of her favourites, “it’s just a lot of us from around the world sharing ideas. There’s one I like by Coloring Pins who does a ‘black is the new black’ one and a black Daria one that can represent your politics without having a massive slogan t-shirt saying ‘Black Lives Matter — a lot of them are in-jokes, or for people who know”. Back in the mid-00s, if you had something to say, you quite literally said it with your chest, leaving bold slogan t-shirts to make your statements for you loud and proud. While this is still the norm — everyone from Dior to Topshop have produced political slogan t-shirts in the past season — it also comes pinned into a lapel in the form of a pin. Quieter at first glance thanks to their unassuming size, it’s here that people have been making some of their most radical statements. Read more at i-D.