Vintage Whistler Mountain Resort pin. This gorgeous pewter cutout pin was a souvenir for people visiting Whistler Mountain in British Columbia. Whistler is what brought me to BC amongst other things so I snagged a bunch of Whistler and Blackcomb pins at my last pin meet. Visiting Whistler these days and skiing is quite the luxury. I was shocked the first time I rode there; Whistler has flushing toilets at the top of almost every lift. In most cases you are very close to a fully licensed bar as well. This logo is a bit of a throwback, so much that I don’t recognize it. There are many places to ski in North America, but I will always consider Whistler to be the holy grail of resorts.
Lillehammer 1994 Winter Olympic Games Håkon and Kristin Logo Flag pin. This is a really solid hard enamel pin with the Lillehammer mascots. This pin is a heavy dose of nostalgia for me. The logo itself is very “early 90s graphic design”. Great pin
Lillehammer 1994 Winter Olympic Games Håkon and Kristin Mascot Kodak Photo Sponsor pin. These cute mascots are riding on a 35mm roll of film! Kodak was a major Olympic sponsor for many years but no longer. They are focusing on Bitcoin mining now. This vintage pin has great patina for a 24 year old pin. The clear coat on top of these pins always yellows and gets weird over the years but at least it will be safe in the event of a global nuclear holocaust! Cute pin!
Lillehammer 1994 Winter Olympic Games Håkon and Kristin Polar Bear Mascot pin. I have been watching home movies today so I’m still feeling nostalgic. I loved finding these Håkon and Kristin pins at pin club because I found some I never knew existed. This is one of those pins. These kids are riding a polar bear. Okay, first off, where the fuck are the parents? This is clearly dangerous! Even though the polar bear looks friendly and is smiling, it’s a killing machine. This is some irresponsible behaviour at best. Sure, maybe in Norway this sort of thing is normal but where I come from this is just plain foolish.
Lillehammer 1994 Winter Olympic Games Håkon and Kristin Mascot Kodak Sponsor pin. Kodak was an Olympics worldwide partner sponsor for many years, actually ending a decade ago in Beijing. Here is a beautiful sponsor pin with bomb-proof clear coat in case of the apocalypse. Håkon and Kristin were the mascots in 1994, two happy little modern day Norwegian children in viking gear. In 1994, I remember my Dad’s return from the Olympics was a triumphant one! He brought back tons of stuff from Norway, but the thing I paid the most attention to was the GALLON ZIP full of pins. These happy little kids were on almost all the pins in the bag. Full disclosure: this pin was acquired more recently due to a strong nostalgia attack at my pin club. As soon as I found one, I needed them all! These pins warm me up with many happy family memories, especially of my brother. He gave away a Håkon and Kristin pin to a very young pin trader who was admiring it on Granville St during the Vancouver 2010 Olympics. “This is what we do when the @pinmeme brothers have their pin book open during the Olympics.” I am very proud of him for this and many other moments.
Los Angeles 1984 Summer Olympic Games LAPD Skywatch pin. The LAPD had more than one eye in the sky for 1984 Games. It’s funny to think of the Goodyear blimp in a dystopian police state future. No? Really? Just me?
Moscow 1980 Summer Olympic Games Misha Mascot pin. This character was also known as Mishka. This sweet little bear character is a strong contrast from the image of a big, scary Russian Bear. This is one of the oldest Olympic pins in my collection. I like the look of the 1980s Moscow puns so there may be more in my future!
Los Angeles 1984 Summer Olympic Games Joint Security Task Force pin. This pin includes all the heavy hitters: US Marine Corps, US Air Force, US Navy, US Army, LAPD, LA Sheriff’s Dept, ATF, FBI, and US Secret Service. I love Law Enforcement puns that are made specifically for the Olympics. This started in 2002 when the military / law enforcement presence was very strong in Salt Lake City. I thought it was an interesting juxtaposition. On one hand you have this incredible joyous celebration of global harmony through athletic competition and on the other hand you have the constant threat against the safety and security of everyone at the games. This pin was hand-picked for me by a fellow club member at Pacific Pin Club that knew I wouldn’t be able to pass a pin like this up for a trade. I love these types of pins because this pin would not have even been available in a retail setting during the games. This would be given to members of the listed organizations, usually in limited numbers. While the design isn’t the most compelling thing in the world, I do like the “antique” finish and bootleg Olympic Rings.
Pyeongchang 2018 Winter Olympic Games Soohorang pin. Soohorang is the white tiger mascot of the 2018 Winter Olympics in Korea. He’s a pretty sweet white tiger dude so I’m pretty pumped about this one. There are lots of cute Soohorang pins that I still need to collect but this is the first one in my book. My dad got me this pin for Christmas so it’s very special to me. Korea is really cool and I hope to visit someday.
Atlanta 1996 Summer Olympic Games FBI Georgia State pin. I love collecting FBI Olympic pins because they are never available at retail and you have to usually personally meet someone from the FBI. Also, this is politically topical at the moment so why not celebrate the FBIs involvement in the 1996 Olympic Games. This gold plated pin doesn’t feature any colored enamel. The cutout shape is really cool as well. Sweet pin!
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Hudson’s Bay Company “Pin of the Week” MukMuk LE 500 pin. Oh man I was gunning for this pin for officially one year before I landed it. FRIENDS OF PINMEME WILL REMEMBER: I’m a MukMuk collector. This is probably the rarest of all the MukMuk pins in existence. During the 2010 Games in Vancouver, HBC had a weekly pin release you had to line up for. MukMuk was one of the first weeks, so they were difficult to find once the Olympics were in full swing and MukMuk had become a runaway fan-favorite sensation. This pin was very casually ZAPPED to me by a member of my pin club. It turns out he had two of these and knew I had been getting turned down on trades for one for a year. He refused any pin I tried to give him as thanks, and just asked for future consideration if I find any pins he’s looking for. Consideration: granted. I’m thankful for this hobby because it has helped me embrace my inner pin nerd and helped me build friendships with really awesome people I wouldn’t have met outside of pins.
Beijing 2008 Summer Olympic Games Athlete’s Village Technology Team pin. Made a trade for this red and gold beauty at my last pin club meetup. The Pacific Pin Club is great because there is such a wide variety of interests represented. Who knew the Athlete’s Village IT team would have such a cool pin? Also, the outline of this pin kind of looks like a skull 💀. Usually I only collect pins from Winter Olympics in the interest of not getting too crazy. This is my first pin from Beijing!
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Chinatown Dragon Street Light and Street Sign pin. Chinatown is an awesome Vancouver neighbourhood just bursting with Chinese culture. There are really dragons on top of the lamp posts there. E Pender represent!
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Gastown Steam Clock pin. I love this pin because the Steam Clock is the most bullshit awful tourist attraction in Vancouver. Located on Water St in Gastown, the clock is a regular clock that releases steam and plays a little song every quarter hour. If you ever want to have a good time, check out the one-star Yelp reviews of the Vancouver Steam Clock; people hate it. Locals and visitors alike can see through the touristy bullshit charm of this beloved outdoor clock.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Dragon pin. This pin is an homage to the Chinese heritage here in Vancouver. I love the detail on this pin, with all the individual dragon scales. This looks like a tattoo design, cool stuff!
Salt Lake City 2002 Winter Olympic Games CoSport VIP Guest pin. This pin is a BRUISER! A completely normal person can put this pin on and suddenly they are transformed into a Very Important Person. I love the design of this pin. This is the apex of geometric snowflake logo pin. What a monster this pin is!
Salt Lake City 2002 Winter Olympic Games Team USA Roots Beret pin. This beret was a highly sought-after piece of the Team USA Opening Ceremony outfit. Salt Lake City had been gripped by "beret fever" with hopeful customers waiting several hours for the chance to purchase a navy microfleece chapeau. This seems to be a running theme during the olympics: a popular, patriotic clothing item whips the public into a frenzy. This huge increase in demand leads to suffocating scarcity with people willing to queue for a very long time and quite possibly harm another human being in order to obtain the object of their desire. The pin market seems to follow suit: those who can't get their hands on the real thing settle for a pin! These were AWESOME traders during the games.
Salt Lake City 2002 Winter Olympic Games CoSport Team USA Snowflake pin. I LOVE this pin design. The abstract geometric snowflakes are usually in full effect for winter olympic pins. This one is gorgeous with an awesome cutout design.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Maple Syrup pin. Maple syrup is the best and up here in Canada, syrup is serious business. This pin has an awesome translucent fill that looks exactly like maple syrup.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Muk Muk Team Équipe VANOC pin. This was a VANOC exclusive pin during the games and includes my favorite little dude, Muk Muk! He's holding his famous foam finger high to the sky. Let's never forget that Muk Muk did not start as an official mascot. He was originally a SIDEKICK, a mere afterthought. Muk Muk became an official mascot by petition of VANOC. Even though he was a late addition, I still love him.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Team Equipé Quatchi and Miga Bus pin. I am always into vechicle pins and this one fits the bill. BEEP BEEP GET THE FUCK OUT THE WAY THE VANCOUVER 2010 TEAM ÉQUIPE BUS IS COMIN THROUGH!! Miga and Quatchi are living that #vanlife
Rio de Janeiro 2016 Summer Olympic Games CBC pin. This is one of three giveaway pins from CBC from this past summer. This hard enamel pin has a very intricate screen printed design framing the logos. The olympic rings on the pin means CBC paid the IOC for their right to use the image- and it doesn't come cheap! Very nice.
Rio de Janeiro 2016 Summer Olympic Games NHK Domokun Carnival Outfit pin. This pin is reason I collect Rio pins. I love Japanese media pins and Domkun is a great character. Japanese media pins can be highly sought after, with Doraemon and Pikachu pins commanding over $100 easily. This one is amazing!
Rio de Janeiro 2016 Summer Olympic Games CBC pin. This pin was given out at the CBC stations around Canada during the 2016 games. The gold and leaf motif of this pin is a good look in my opinion. The design evokes Brazil but isn't too over the top. My next two posts are from Rio as well. I normally don't collect summer olympics but I have made an exception for Rio. The pins that came out of Rio were exceptionally festive and colorful, just like Brazil.
Salt Lake City 2002 Winter Olympic Games Utah Olympic Oval Cast pin. Only initially available to volunteers and staff at the Oval Venue, this pin has a badass speedskater sillouhette. All the cast pins had this aesthetic and each venue had its own pin.
Salt Lake City 2002 Winter Olympic Games Olympic Village pin. This pin commemorates the Olympic village where all the various countries that are participating live and stay during the duration of the Olympics. The Olympic Village is not accessible by the public due to privacy and security concerns. Olympians, their coaches and support teams have access to fitness facilities, support services and most notably a McDonalds where everything is free!
Salt Lake City 2002 Winter Olympic Games Olympic Square Official Cast pin. This pin is a little banged up, but it went through a lot before I got it (or at least that's what I like to tell myself). This staff was only for the hot shot employees/volunteers in the Olympic Square. The Coca Cola Pin Trading pavillion is where my little brother and I learned to trade / hustle pins! My twelve year old brother was barely tall enough to see on top of the trading tables lol.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Bobsled Maple Leaf pin. I love these cutout two layer pins. They are a great way to elevate any subject matter. The translucent fill on the maple leaf is next level 🍁
Nagano 1998 Winter Olympic Games Team USA pin. People at my pin club who went to Japan for 1998 claim it was one of the most lucrative pin events in recent memory. Gift-giving is so big in Japanese culture that it makes sense people would be buying many little presents for one another. Pins make great gifts, especially if you get your hands on something you know someone would really like.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Canadian Maple Leaf Hockey pin. When Canada beat the US in the gold medal hockey game, Vancouver shut the fuck down. The cheers could be heard everywhere in the city, particularly downtown. I had to walk to work because throngs of red and white hooligans shut down the bus system. Everyone was Canadian that day. Everyone.
Salt Lake City 2002 Winter Olympic Games Guitar and Cowboy Hat pin. Guitar pins are another favorite of mine. Music goes hand and hand with the Olympics, often there are features concerts every night of the Games. In 2002, I got to see Cheryl Crow and Barenaked Ladies perform! I had a chance to see Train with some tickets I won, but I disliked "Drops of Jupiter" so much, I couldn't bring myself to do it. We sold my tickets to a scalper and went out to dinner instead. I stand by my decision 15 years later.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Snowboarding Maple Leaf pin. There was a whole series of these pins for each sport but there were TWO snowboarding ones - probably one for downhill and one for halfpipe. What a sick-ass cool fuckin dude this guy is cruising down the hill. This teal maple leaf has a gorgeous multilayered pin design using translucent color fill and a sharp little screen print of the VANOC 2010 Logo. Recognize!
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Roman Numerals Snowboarding Grab pin. Whaaaat look at this sick fucking air. Amazing grab. The amount of stoke here is MONUMENTAL. This pin has a lot going on: 3D snowboarder on it's own layer, roman numeral cutout design, and full color screen printing for the logo.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games Snowboarding Maple Leaf pin. Check out the fuckin sick air grab here! What a half-piper this shredder is, eh? Very nice style on this pin too. Transparent filling with different layers?? Screenprinting? Stacked double pin? Get out of here with this one!
Vancouver 2010 Olympics Oakley Thunderbird Totem Pole pin. This pin was exclusive to Oakley employees during the 2010 Olympics. I love the weight and 3D design of this pin. It's got a double back and an awesome Oakley logo right in the middle.
Albertville 1992 Winter Olympics USPS Official Sponsor pin. The United States Postal Service has been operating in some form since 1775. 217 years later, the USPS sponsors the Olympics in Albertville. This is a classic type of sponsorship pin- just the logos of the two organizations presented side by side. This pin would have been produced by USPS using the official Albertville Olympic logo complete with the rings. Any time you see the rings on a pin, you can be damn sure someone paid a lot of money to use them. The IOC is agressive and litigious enforcing the use of the Olympic rings. This is about as official as it gets.
Albertville 1992 Winter Olympics Long Track Speedskating Stamp pin. This pin is an actual stamp, sandwiched between plastic. The design screams early 90s and I connect with the subject matter. Since this is legal tender, it will never lose value.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) maple leaf pin. This pin is a total gem from the last pin trading event I attended. This is a legitimate CBSA Olympic pin with the VANOC stamp on the back. These pins were originally only possessed by CBSA agents, which really gets me excited. It is an amazing design with a nice maple leaf at centre. This very official looking pin was a welcome addition to my collection and is not leaving my grasp any time soon!
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Opening Day Quatchi and Miga Olympic Flame BC Place February 12, 2010 pin. This pin commemorates the first day of the 2010 Games in Vancouver. This pin has a lot going on: a Canadian flag, the Olympic Flame, mascots, VANOC logo.... the list goes on and on. This is a retail pin that still holds a little bit of trading weight. I love how many things are going on here.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics United States Federal Air Marshall Badge pin. I have always been obsessed with Olympic pins with a law enforcement agency tie-in, or is it law enforcement pins with an Olympic tie-in? Either way, this one is an eBay score which has dubious origins. Not really having a source that was an Air Marshall, this pin could be a "fantasy" creation to make money off suckers that lust after this sort of stuff (me). Consensus at my pin club was that it was a pin that was "around in 2010" and these fringe pins now hold more interest than they did back then. This pin is probably not legitimate, but I dig the look and badge with maple leafs.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Aboriginal Series Headdress pin. This is another pin in the series celebrating aboriginal culture. There is only a few I am missing: some footwear, a feather and a traditional hand drum. I eventually want all of them.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Aboriginal Series First Nations Canoe. This canoe is the first pin in this series to be an authentic local reference to the aboriginal peoples of the Pacific Northwest. I love the shape and look of this pin so much, I have accidently traded for it twice!
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Aboriginal Series Dreamcatcher pin. Original to the Ojibwe Nation, they were intended to catch any harm in the air around them. This was appropriated by the New Age community which produced versions of dreamcatchers that did not bear much resemblence to the originals. As far as pins go, this one was quite popular in 2010 and held some serious trading weight. It has a great shape and cutout elements. I was happy to finally pick one up at Pacific Pin Club. If you are in Vancouver, join us this Sunday to check out a large array of lapel pins and pin traders. Check out www.pacificpinclub.org for more information
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Aboriginal Headdress pin. This pin depicts a war bonnet made of eagle feathers. This headwear is not typical of First Nations here in the Pacific Northwest, but rather the Great Plains tribes.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Wildlife Series Grizzly Bear pin. Grizzlies are no joke! Up north you have to burn your trash so they don't come looking for it. Don't try to shout and scare these guys off, you are better off playing dead! I would certainly soil myself.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Wildlife Series Canadian Goose pin. This majectic honker is mid flight on it's way to find some food! Maybe worms after a fresh rain or snails down on the beach? Geese have always freaked me out because I was attacked by one as a small child. I find they are mostly nice and get a bad rap.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Wildlife Series Black Bear pin. The proper way to greet a bear is by saying "whoa bear" when you encounter a bear in the woods. This is how you remain bear aware and the bear remains aware of you. The proper inflection of "whoa bear" should be relatively calm but clear. Should the bear approach you, the tone should become more assertive and direct. If you try playing dead with a black bear they are likely to take a bite out of you.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Wildlife Series Bald Eagle pin. This is from a series I started collecting when I got back into pins this past September. I didn't know about this series during the Games because they were quite scarce. I have all of them, with the exception of the otters. If you have the otter pin, let me know. I have always loved bald eagles because I am a proud American. It's funny, I have never seen as many bald eagles as when I moved to Canada! They are everywhere here, I see them down near the Vancouver Museum all the time.
Rio 2016 Summer Olympics Green Road to Rio Team NBC pin. This pin is the same color as the pool in Rio. Remember they were pretending nothing was wrong? But it's like, guys, that shit is green. Something is fucked up with that.
Rio 2016 Summer Olympics NBC Road to Rio pin. This is the second in a series of three Road to Rio pins. Media pins are desirable because of their exclusivity. These? Not so much, I ordered them off the NBC Sports website a few weeks before the games.
Rio 2016 Summer Olympics Team NBC Road to Rio Red pin. Media pins hit home for me always and I love the design of this one. NBC Sports made three of these Road to Rio pins with the plane graphic. Savage.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Unofficial Bobsledding Oh Shit pin. This is my final Oh Shit pin and it's a bit of a downer. On the day of the opening ceremony Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili was killed after sustaining injuries on a training run at the Whistler Sliding Centre. His death cast a really serious feeling over the cermony and the Olympics, with Georgia even saying they may back out of the games entirely. The country of Georgia decided instead to stay and honor their fallen comrade. Without the context of the other pins, this pin would be in extremely poor taste.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Unofficial Curling Oh Shit pin. Curling gets clowned on a lot. During the 2010 games, my brother separated his shoulder snowboarding. He recovered with strong painkillers and watching hours of curling! He told me "I finally get why curling is so exciting." He got really in to it.
Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics Oh Shit Unofficial Figureskating pin. Oh Shit! This series of pins features athletes beefing it while participating various Olympic events. It was a limited set that someone had made for the games. I'm a sucker for unofficial merchandise and so here we are.
Atlanta 1996 Summer Olympics Cabbage Patch Kids Olympikids Relay Track and Field pin. Cabbage Patch Kids are from Georgia originally, so it would make sense that there would be such a presence during the Atlanta games.
Atlanta 1996 Summer Olympics Olympikids Cabbage Patch Kids Gymnastics Vaulting pin. In 1996, there were special Cabbage Patch Kids to celebrate Team USA. These pins were released in a series to commemorate these dolls doing all the summer sports. The "O" in this one is the wrong color, making it a super rare variant of this pin.
Denver, Colorado 1976 Winter Olympic Games pin. Here is another pin representing an Olympics that never was! The 1976 Winter Olympics were awarded to Denver in 1970, but by 1972 voters rejected the games due to budget and environmental concerns.