Buttons, badges and pins stand for a medium which is often underestimated and not taken seriously. That’s a pity, because designed properly, badges and buttons can effectively communicate ideas to your potential customers and impress them with something creative and beautiful.
In this post we cover some interesting ideas for design of buttons, badges, pins and clips — traditional handcraft which can be attached to cloth, bags, documents and whatever you can think of. You may use them to deliver some idea or message, in web design (e.g. Missy makes use of them) or in the merchandise for promotion purposes.
Not all examples presented below fit to all environments; some of them are more likely to be used in informal environments. You don’t want to have a Bart Simpson screaming at your boss during the job interview, do you?
Why buttons? Link
Buttons are powerful because they show what is important to the person wearing it, which ideas he or she supports and what kind of a person you are dealing with. Some buttons can make people pass away with a subtle smile, the other ones can send a message to the world, and as such, pose a very powerful medium to explore. Which is why we, designers, can make use of them, packaging ideas in small and “portable” objects of daily life.
So why not surprise your clients by handing in some pretty and creative pins, buttons or stickers one can attach to cloth, bags, laptops or personal documents? In most online-shops you can upload your own designs and produce dozens of buttons at a very cheap price. Therefore we want to focus your attention on the power of buttons and badges and give you some ideas for your future designs.
Buttons and Badges Link
Toy Robots – pinback buttons
Robots in the town! And they are pretty sweet, too!
We steal your mail to keep you safe
“Just in time for the postal rate increase.” Sometimes, buttons can make something think or laugh. This button may not make any sense, but it is provoking and as such desevers a place in our selection.
If you love ampersands, you’ll love this button, too.
Bird Talk (Red) badge
A twittering button for Twitter users. Or maybe talking about birds is one of your favourite subjects?
Cassette Tape buttons
Cassette Tape for record collectors. You can show what is important to you without saying a word about it.
Angel Tea badge
“Tea is a gift from the gods. Coffee is a gift from the ninnies.”
Badges: good. The Simpsons badges: better.
Buttons for Designers
Nintendo DS Lite button, Mario, Adobe and… do you recognize the man at the right in the second row?
BSW Buttons by ~thagerott
Pure typography can also be used for badges and buttons.
Mozilla and RSS buttons
The promotion of your products can be done with badges. In the examples below Firefox, Thunderbird and RSS buttons are presented. Well, literally RSS-buttons.
Dessert K: Kiwi Jelly
Mmmmm, tasty! Dessert Kiwi Jelly and Apple Pie. This fruity dessert is really happy. Dessert A-Z button series by hakee+ from Hong Kong.
Hello Jupiter Four Buttons
Buttons can also be pretty colorful.
These characters are pretty tough and sweet.
“i love u…” button
That’s an interesting idea. Two characters communicate via, well, external medium — a piece of thread.
Pop Labs Buttons
Pop Labs buttons have the form of a bottle cap.
buttons by ~scrape
Baby-Sitters Club Graphic Novel Buttons
Bota Fora Goma!
Buttons have a form of a cloth button.
Space Invader badges
Space Invaders are coming back. Pixel art can be used for badges as well.
Have you even been in love with the square root?
Uber Geek Badges
Have you even been in loved with the square root?
Icons can communicate ideas in your design projects. They can communicate ideas through your buttons as well.
1 + 1 = 2
Well, that’s kind of clear, but cute also.
Stencil Graffiti Button Set – Star Wars Fighters
Grunge and Graffiti art applied to buttons design.
Sending the message in the office.
TV Dinner Monster Pins
Skull Rock 6-Pack
Skulls don’t have to be scary. They can be sweet, too.
Made from 1960s Star Trek comic book.
Cassette Badge Sets
Pop art collage. “Get on your knees and confess”.
New Pocket Mirrors!
Radial Pattern buttons
Toilet Paper Buttons
Hm, this is an unusual theme for buttons design. But that’s exactly what makes them different. We don’t know what is the idea behind, though.
I Love Pirates button
Hey Cupcake! pinback buttons
Mi prima Carnal
Love is in the air. And on your button.
Reading is Sexy button
Proud to be green
Simple, nice and clean pattern on greenish buttons.
Sweet Skull 6-Pack
Unusual design: these pinback buttons with Japanese skulls and sweets on silver and red shiny, sparkly hologram papers.
Rob Jan’s “Fantastique” badge cloak
This is the back of a Star Trek Klingon patterned Science Fiction and Fantasy trophy cloak. This view shows the back and two side panels fully deployed. All of the badges are either drawn in the computer, obtained on line or hand drawn and painted by Rob Jan. Impressive.
old pin cushion
pin cushion 2
Warm ‘n Fuzzy Flower Buttons
drought relief – felt art
‘Strawberry Sundae’ wall art
Crafting 365, day 173 – pink teacups
Last Click Link
Plates of tarts
Hold on, Tiger! Thank you for reading the article. Did you know that we also publish printed books and run friendly conferences – crafted for pros like you? Like SmashingConf Barcelona, on October 25–26, with smart design patterns and front-end techniques.