How to Organize Pins

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A Plethora of Pins...

Collection of vintage pins

... or a Board of Brooches

As I wrote this, I struggled. Brooch sounds so ooooollllldddd 😫 But pins are for sewing (and Pinterest) aren’t they? So I did a little research. And subsequently got sucked into the internet time warp; who would’ve known there was that much to learn about brooches?!?!

Quite interesting actually. They’ve been around forever as fashion and function, some with symbolic meaning and some just to hold up your loincloth. I will spare you the novel and just break down a couple key points:

What's the difference between pin and brooch?

Technically speaking, pins and brooches are both decorative pieces of jewelry that attach to clothing with a sharpened metal wire on the back. Pins are the general category for such pieces of jewelry, and brooches are a specific type of pin.

So. Brooches are fancy pins 👍 I guess moving forward, we can call them either one.

Is it Brooch or Broach?

According to Merriam-Webster:

A brooch is a piece of jewelry held on with a pin or clasp, while broach is most often a verb meaning to introduce a new subject into a discussion. However, ‘broach’ has historically been used as a noun as well, also referring to the jewelry.

Ah, so nice to have clarification on that. On this page, we’re going to have to ignore the fact that the spelling looks wonky and stick with ‘brooch’ as I’m kind of a stickler for grammar and such.

I cut a piece of cardboard to the size I needed (just an old box side. If you’re an Amazon fan I’m sure you won’t have any trouble finding boxes around 🤭) 

Cover that with fun fabric. I find that thicker works best, it holds up nicer with pins poking through and hanging off. Lay the fabric right side down, set the cardboard on top, and cut the fabric about 1-2″ bigger on all four sides. With your handy glue gun, fold over each side of the fabric and glue onto the cardboard. The corners can get a bit bulky so it might require some trimming and fussing with, but the looks won’t matter so do whatever you need to do 👊

Now it’s time to attach it to wherever it is going to live! Mine is on the side of a wooden shelf/dresser. Use small brad nails to attach it. One in each corner is probably fine, but if it’s large or you want it more secure feel free to use a few more along the edges. You can attach it to your wall instead; if that’s the case use longer nails and try to hit a stud behind the drywall so the nails don’t pull out of the drywall and the whole thing falls off 😋

That’s it! Carefully poke your pins and/or brooches in from the top down; don’t worry about having the pin end poke back out to close it, they can just rest open in the cardboard. Step back and enjoy looking at them all 😊 But don’t forget to wear them often! Add some ‘you’ to your outfits.

Need some ideas for using your brooches?

  • As previously mentioned, holding up your loincloth bahahahaha
  • Adding some pizzazz to your ball cap; brim or cap
  • Holding a scarf closed
  • Pinning your shirt in place
  • In an elastic in your hair, or glued onto a bobby pin
  • On your shoe; in the laces, or pinned through the side
  • Cuff of your pants if they’re rolled up
  • Back pocket of your jeans, but be careful when you’re sitting
  • On a scrunchie on your wrist, or pinned across multiple beaded bracelets
  • Pinned on your purse

Here is a post showing other ways to wear pins from the incredible Missus Smarty Pants (an expert styler who I’ve been following for well over a decade!) It’s got some cute photos for inspiration, and a bonus placement tip for different body styles. You can jump over to that post by clicking this link: 


Do you have an idea I haven’t thought of? How do you use your pins? Let me know in the comments!

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