Monday, 31 October 2011

31/10: Coca-Cola Pin Trading Centres - Request for Volunteers

As you may be aware, during the Olympic and Paralympic Games, Coca Cola will be hosting the official pin trading centres. These are venues where pin collectors can come together and trade Olympic pins. The centres are manned by volunteers and Coca Cola staff who ensure that everyone has a great experience. They are there to explain the process to new traders and to make sure that everyone has a fair chance to display their trades. At present, the plan is to have two centres, one located inside the Olympic Park and another in a central London location. The Olympic Park venue will be open during the Olympic and Paralympic Games and accessible only to those with tickets which allow entry to the Park itself. The central London venue will be open from approximately a week before the opening of the Olympic Games right through until the end of the Paralympic Games and will be open to all.

If you are interested in volunteering to help staff one of the centres, then Coca Cola would like to hear from you. I have offered to collect the details of people who would like to be considered for a volunteer role in one of the Coca Cola Pin Trading Centres (CCPTC). At this stage, this is just a registration of you interest. There is no commitment and no guarantee that you will be chosen. We would, though, like to find out the numbers of people interested in helping out.

If you have been to one of the pin meets and given me your name, there is no need to email me, you're already on the list!

I appreciate that many readers live outside London and have other commitments, so if you could indicate your approximate availability that would help with assessing your interest.

If you would like to volunteer or know more, please drop me an email with your details to

Sunday, 30 October 2011

30/10: New Christmas Pins and White Logo Pin

New Christmas pins were announced on Friday along with a new version of the white logo pin.

The Christmas pins show Wenlock slam-dunking a present into a stocking (similar to the US version), Mandeville carrying a snowball and a printed version of the snowman pin released last year.

Pin 0854

Pin 0855

Pin 0288

The mascot pins are limited to 2,012 pieces each and the snowman is limited to 50,000 pieces. These pins are already available from Glamorous Living but most likely be available from all the main retailers.

Also announced last week was another version of the white logo pin. 

Pin 0445

This one is limited to 1.5 million pieces and is aimed at the mass market via high-street retailers rather than collectors. The main difference between this pin and the original is that the spaces between the digits are filled rather than cut through.

Monday, 24 October 2011

24/10: Pin Event - John Lewis, Oxford Street

This Friday - 28 October 2011, Honav and John Lewis will be hosting a pin promotion at the John Lewis store on Oxford Street, London. They will be promoting the Royal Parks, Icons of England and London Landmarks pins. There will also be some Mascot Special poses pins to be won.

The event runs from 11am until 2pm on Friday.

24/10: IOC Poster and Logo Pins

At the pin meet on Saturday, Honav announced the latest set of new pins. These are a series of pins which replicate the posters and logos of previous Olympic Games. They use artwork from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Museum in Lausanne.

Pin 0735
In total there will be 27 pins in the poster set each limited to 10,000 pieces showing posters stretching back to Athens 1896 through to Beijing 2008. Each pin is printed so that the detail of each poster can be reproduced. No details of price at the moment.

Pin 0789

The logo series is a little smaller consisting of 20 pins from Paris 1924 to Beijing. These pins are enamel. The first release in this series consists of 10 pins. More will follow. This series is limited to 5,000 pieces each. Again, no word on price at the moment.

These pins are mounted on a new version of backing card. The card is themed to match the posters and contains text inside which mentions the IOC Museum

Backing Card - Front

Backing Card - Rear

Backing Card - Inside

Retailers will be receiving details of these pins this week, so please be patient if your favourite retailer doesn't have details until later this week.

Sunday, 23 October 2011

23/10: 4th Unofficial London 2012 Pin Collectors Pin Meet

Yesterday saw the 4th pin meet for the London 2012 pin collectors. Our number grow steadily at each meet and this time we had 23 attendees of whom 11 were 'first-timers' to one of our meets. Collectors from Land's End and Calgary attended as well as those that live near the Olympic Park. There were a few familiar faces that were not able to make it, so let's hope that they will be free for the next meet.

Many of the collectors enhanced their collections and made some very good trades. Those that attended for the first time were welcomed into the groups and all of them were bitten by the bug I think. Speaking to them towards the end of the meet, I think they will be back for the next meet with traders in hand!

We were joined by two representatives from the London 2012 team at Coca Cola who shared some information with us about the plans for the Coca Cola Pin Trading Centres and listened to our ideas for designs for their range of Coca Cola pins that will be available next year.

Honav attended and announced their new range of pins which show posters and logos from past Games using artwork from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) museum's collection. You can read more about the new pins in a following post.

Originally we had hoped that a film crew from London 2012 would be joining us to record the event and make a small video promoting pin collecting and trading for their website. Unfortunately they had to cancel at the 11th hour, but have promised to join us at the next meet. They are fully committed to publicising pin trading to their readers.

We discussed plans for future meetings and the general consensus was that we will aim to get together next year in January and then once a month from March until Games time.

Thank you to everyone that attended and continue to make these meetings a success. As soon as I have details for the next meet, I'll post on the blog.

Finally, thank you to Jan and her team at the Railway Tavern in Stratford. Not only does she allow us to use the pub conservatory for our meets, completely free of charge, but she and her staff always make us feel welcome. We really do appreciate your support.

So, in summary a thoroughly enjoyable day. Not only a chance to trade pins, but to meet other collectors and see pins you have only seen pictures of before. I'm looking forward to Pin Meet 5 already.

Thursday, 20 October 2011

20/10: New Pantomime Pins

In readiness for the festive season, London 2012 continue their British Life series with a set of pins based on Pantomime.

The pins come as a boxed set of 6 and show a dame, princess, pantomime horse, pair of ugly sisters, a leading man and a "Oh no it isn't! Oh yes it is!" speech bubble. The packaging for this set is a little different and very well thought out. From the outside, it looks like a standard London 2012 pin set with the pink box and black lid combination. On the inside, however, the normal plain backing card has been replaced with a printed theatre curtain effect card. This sets off the pins very well indeed. Let's hope other future sets continue this idea.

The set is limited to 2,012 pieces, priced at £55 and is available now.

Pin 0988 
Pin 0989

Pin 0990

Pin 0991

Pin 0992

Pin 0993
No word on retailers yet, but feel free to post a comment when you see it on sale anywhere.

Monday, 17 October 2011

17/10: Sainsbury's Pin

A new pin from Paralympics Sponsor - Sainsbury's has been spotted in at least two stores.

The pin has a blue background with a stylised portion of the Thames and a basketball and football to form the word 'London' along with a London skyline which helps form a '2012'. The paralympic logo is displayed on a gold background.

There's no obvious reason for the timing of the release. Perhaps it's to coincide with 300 days to go the Paralympics which falls on 3rd November.

Thanks to a reader for the photograph.

Friday, 14 October 2011

14/10: Pin Meet - Saturday 22nd October

A reminder to you all that the '4th Unofficial London 2012 Pin Traders Pin Meet' takes place next weekend - Saturday 22nd October. Once again, we'll be meeting at The Railway Tavern in Stratford thanks to the generous owners who let us use the conservatory. Start time is 2.30pm.

Currently we have 25 confirmed attendees, so once again an increase in numbers on the previous meet.

According to TfL, the Jubilee and Central lines are operating around Stratford, so hopefully there should be no issues with transport.

For anyone who hasn't registered their interest yet, please drop me a line to if you would like to come or would like more information.

A special invitation to those who are just starting out with their pin collection and feel they may have nothing to trade. Please don't worry. OK, so you may not walk away with lots of new pins, but you will meet lots of enthusiastic and friendly collectors and be part of a group that is growing month by month. You'll make some very useful contacts and get yourself known in trading circles. It doesn't matter whether you have nothing to trade or have the complete collection (you know who you are!), you will be welcome. Drop me an email, we can chat beforehand if you would like to.

I have contacted a few sponsors regarding the possibility of some pins for attendees. At the moment I cannot promise anything. We were very lucky last time, so please don't be too disappointed if you don't each walk away with 3 new pins this time!

And now for some exciting news about the day...

London 2012 would like to come and join us and film the event in order to make a short video for their website which promotes pin trading to their fan-base. We all know that pin trading is the greatest spectator sport at the Games, and London 2012 would like to spread this news to their readers.

They are keen for me to point out, that no-one will be filmed or approached if they do not wish to be. Please don't feel that you have to be 'on show', but if you would like a chance to promote the hobby - here it is.

So, it should be an interesting day. If you've been before then I'm looking forward to seeing you again next week and if you haven't but think it might be for you, then please join us.

You can see the original invitation here (includes a map)

13/10: Wellington Boot Pins

A new series of 6 pins has been issued to celebrate the Wellington Boot. Each pin shows a pair of wellies in a different pattern with a complementary London 2012 logo.

Pin 0972

My personal favourite is shown above  - the Union Flag logo, but the other 5 pins show wellies with blue spots (0973), green spots (0974) and 3 varieties of tartan (0976, 0977 and 0979).

For those of you who like pins in the full range of London 2012 colours, pink spots (0975) and another variety of tartan (0978) are still to be issued making 8 pins in total.

These pins are limited to 2,012 pieces each. I wonder if some of these may be a sell-out in a short time?

These first 6 pins are already on order at Glamorous Living.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

13/10: New US Retail Pins

It seems there's lots of activity in the US with new retail pins being launched. 8 new pins have been announced due for release shortly.

These pins use many of the themes we've seen already such as the crown and weather however the Stonehenge and Downing Street pins are a welcome addition to the range.

As for all the other US retail pins, these are only for sale and distribution within the USA.

Friday, 7 October 2011

7/10: Two Sets of US Retail Pins

A quick scan across the internet today has revealed 2 more sets of pins being issued in the US for their retail market.

The first is a set of 2 pins available now to mark the Christmas period or Holiday season as its termed. The 2 pins show Wenlock slam-dunking a present into a basketball hoop (the same image used in LOCOG emails last Christmas) and another version of the snowflake design used in two separate pins in the UK last Christmas.

The other set of pins are 16 pictogram pins which are advertised as being available from November.

These are the first London 2012 pictogram pins to display the logo also.

As for the previous US retail pins, these are only for sale and distribution within the USA.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

5/10: McDonald's Pins

Over the weekend a few sellers on eBay have been advertising McDonald's London 2012 pins. There are 4 designs featuring the London 2012 logo with the McD Arches. 3 of the pins also feature London icons
of a Guard, Big Ben and a bus. They appear to be printed rather than enamel and no word on manufacturer.

I've heard conflicting information that these may be retail pins or staff only pins. If anyone has any further facts on these pins, feel free to add a comment.

Sunday, 2 October 2011

2/10: New London 'Union Flag Landlines' Pins

London 2012 are releasing a new set of pins which merge the blue, green and pink brand colours with the London icons line drawings theme. They form a set called 'Union Flag Landlines' and consist of 9 pins showing landmarks and buses along with the Union flag. Three of my favourites from the set are shown below.

Pin 0956

Pin 0958

Pin 0964

Each pin is limited to 50,000 and should be available soon.