Pin Grading

Pin grading scales vary from artist to artist, and what is Standard Grade to one artist may be considered Seconds Grade to another. Enamel pins are mass produced goods that are made by hand, and it is reasonable to expect some flaws. Please keep in mind that colors on your screen may differ from the actual colors of a physical product.

If you receive a pin that you strongly feel belongs in a lower grade than what you purchased according to the grading scale below, please email me with photos of your pin, order number, and a description of the flaws in question.


Collector/Perfect Grade 

These pins are near perfect. They are retained for product photography and display purposes. There are seldom ever enough of these in a batch to warrant selling them, so in the rare instance that they can be purchased, they are listed at a higher price.


Standard/A Grade 

Standard pins are likely to have minor flaws that aren't immediately noticeable. Examples include:

  • misplaced or miscolored flecks of glitter (very common in pins with glitter!)
  • slight discoloration or tarnishing of metal plating (very common in rose gold plating!)
  • slight texturing in metal lines
  • small air bubbles in enamel
  • small dust specks in enamel or screen printing (very common in pins with white/light colored enamel!)
  • light scratches or scuffs in metal or enamel
  • slightly over-filled or under-filled enamel
  • tarnishing on the backside of the pin
  • slight discoloration of enamel
  • variation in thickness of metal lines


Seconds/B Grade

Seconds pins are sold at a discount due to readily apparent flaws. Examples include:

  • significant discoloration of metal plating or enamel
  • small areas of missing or incorrectly colored enamel
  • significantly under-filled or over-filled enamel
  • enamel that spills onto metal lines
  • enamel that slightly spills into adjacent fill areas
  • misaligned, tarnished, or partial screen printing
  • multiple air bubbles or dust specks in enamel
  • scratches or scuffs in metal or enamel
  • significant areas of missing, misplaced, or miscolored glitter
  • shallow gouges in enamel
  • overly thick metal lines that significantly deviate from the design


Unsalable/C Grade

These pins have major flaws that compromise their intended function or design. These pins are not sold. Examples include:

  • chipping or excessive tarnishing of metal plating
  • enamel that excessively spills into other fill areas
  • enamel that covers multiple metal lines
  • broken or missing backing posts
  • significantly misaligned screen printing
  • deep, detracting gouges in enamel
  • deep or large scratches or scuffs in metal or enamel
  • large areas of missing or incorrectly colored enamel
  • illegible lettering
  • missing/wrong back logo imprint
  • overall poor quality