Every year at Pin-Depot, we have the exciting opportunity to assist our customers in designing products they can be proud to hand out.
WHAT IS A 3D MOLD PIN?
Typically, custom lapel pins consist of raised metal lines over recessed areas. These recessed areas can be filled with color or left empty, creating a 2D image much like a cartoon. For designs with more detailed aspects, however, some added depth may be in order. 3D molds are a great solution to add dimension and detail to your pin design. 3D molds are made by digitally rendering a 3D relief image, casting that image into a mold, and melting metal into the mold, much like casting a sculpture. They can be an excellent addition to a pin design, helping your art truly stand out.
WHAT ARE SOME GOOD USES FOR 3D MOLDS ON PINS?
1. PEOPLE AND ANIMALS
Standard pins have many diverse uses, but when it comes to images of people, especially realistic images of faces, the end result can be a bit flat, often cartoonish. A 3D mold can be used to capture a more accurate likeness of a person or even a group of people. A good example of 3D faces on metal can be found on most currencies, like George Washington on the U. S. Quarter.
2. ARCHITECTURE AND TECHNOLOGY
Statues, buildings, city skylines, vehicles, and machines all translate quite well to 3D molds. Their solid structures and clearly defined shapes aid in their portrayal as well. 3D molds can capture tiny details such as windows on a skyscraper or door handles on a car. The clean lines of a car or the numerous components on a circuit board all show up nicely on a 3D mold, adding that extra level of realism to the object on the pin.
3. ADDING MULTIPLE LEVELS TO 2D PINS
If your design lends itself more toward a standard 2D pin, but you want to add some depth, 3D molds can be a great option. Simply elevating a portion of the flat art with a 3D mold can add depth to your logo or illustration. Elevated 2D designs are also terrific solutions if you still want colored enamel on your pin.
VARIOUS TIPS FOR 3D PINS.
1. CONSIDER YOUR BUDGET.
While 3D molds can be a great option for your pin, they also come at a premium price. If budget is a concern for your project, you may want to consider whether a 3D mold is the best option for you. If your pin design is mainly a logo, or if it is a line drawing or an illustration, a standard 2D pin design may be a more effective choice for you. If you are looking for a piece of art that will help you to commemorate an award or achievement, 3D molds often add a level of detail that can appear timeless and more valuable than a 2D pin.
2. PLATING CAN MAKE ALL THE DIFFERENCE.
With 3D molds, some platings offer more contrast than others. Black metal, for example, is extremely dark. If your entire 3D design is done in black metal, small details in your design may be obscured. Small details may also be obscured by high polished metal as well. While the high polished silver and gold options offer more visibility for 3D molds than black metal, the reflective nature of high polished metal tends to be too bright for more intricate 3D designs.
While your needs may vary concerning plating, our general recommendation for 3D molds is antiqued gold and silver. The antiquing process darkens the recessed areas of the more subdued metal, ensuring that your design's raised areas are easily visible, while still maintaining clarity in the recessed details.
3. ADD A SPLASH OF COLOR WITH TRANSLUCENT ENAMEL.
Another way to set your 3D design apart is by implementing translucent colored enamel. If you want a specific portion of your 3D pin to be featured, or if you would just like to add a color overlay to your 3D design, translucent enamel could be perfect for you. Translucents are a glossy, see-through color option that looks similar to stained glass. They are effective if you want to color, but don't want standard enamel obscuring your 3D design. Overlaying a translucent color over a simple 3D pattern, like waves or scales, is a great way to add interest to any empty space you may have on your 3D pin.
3D pins can be a very eye-catching option for any pin project. If you have any other questions about 3D pins, or if you would like to get started creating some of your own, call us or visit our website today!