19 ways to wear brooches, buttons and badges

As I attempted to tidy up my jewellery stash the other day, I uncovered some treasures I’d all but forgotten about: a glittering peacock-shaped brooch that belonged to my mother, pearl-encrusted pins found in a dusty thrift store in the Adelaide Hills, a traditional Latvian brooch from one of my dearest friends, and a cluster of badges emblazoned with such cheeziness they can still make me laugh out loud.

Each one of them held a special memory or meaning for me. But, I couldn’t remember the last time I wore any of them. Sound familiar?

Yet pinning a special treasure to part of an outfit is a simple way to make your look unique – as unique as the different places and faces that make up that crazy patchwork of your life.

So because brooches, buttons and badges (and all things starting with the letter B) should never be kept in the corner, here’s 19 fab ways to get pinnning.


1. Showcase your favourite trinket against a monochromatic background. Think display case in a jewellery shop.


2. Button your shirt up to the top, and wear a large brooch at the collar.


3. Secure some bling onto a fabric head-band.


4. Wrap your waist with a sash or men’s tie, and fasten with a brooch.


5. Cluster in themes, and scatter on a jacket lapel.


6. Add pizzazz to your ponytail by pinning onto your hair elastic.


7. Create an original necklace by attaching a brooch to a chain, ribbon or length of leather.


8. If you’re breastfeeding, use your brooch as a handy reminder of what side you nursed from last, and switch sides accordingly.


9. Add a quick and easy touch of glamour by pinning a sparkly brooch to your messy bun.


10. Personalise your beret, beanie or fedora with enameled or sparkly brooches, and pin fun buttons to a baseball cap.


11.  Channel Sarah Jessica Parker in Sex and the City and pin an oversized bloom or accessory.


12. The ’90s were awesome, and your band badges still are. Bring them back in with another classic from the decade – the denim jacket.


13. A delicate brooch on a fitted knit screams ‘sweater girl’. Work it.


14. A classic shift dress in a solid colour with a feature brooch never goes out of style.


15. Secure a scarf or wrap with an unexpected  little something special.


16. Dress up a basic cloth tote or diaper bag with something that shows a bit of your unique character.


17. Personalise a woven or fabric cuff with your favourite badge or pin.

18. Position a brooch in the region between your clavicle and shoulder to draw attention to your face.


19. Accentuate your curves by pinning at the narrowest spot on your waist.



How do you like to wear your brooches, buttons and badges? And what are the stories behind your favourites?

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