Tasty illustrations by Birmingham’s Joe Rogers (aka Rudiger/Colourbox). He creates lapel & bag badges via the Prickie badge-on-demand service, for those young (or ancient) enough to wear badges without people pointing and laughing,…

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… and he also does illustrations for those who want to freshen up their print materials or have a portrait for the wall…

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Pete Ashton has more thoughts about the role of badges in promoting local talent.

I remember my uncle telling me about how he scouted around the backstreet workshops of Birmingham in the late 1970s, and was able to buy up thousands of the original casting moulds for collectable badges (armed forces cap-badges and the like) for 50p a time, or less. Birmingham has a long history in this trade, of course, arising originally from the button trade. An old Post article says…

“In the history of badge making Birmingham stands supreme. There is no other place in the world where generations of talented die-sinkers, enamellers and other expert artists in the medallist and badge making business have produced so many and such a varied output.”

A few jobbing badge-making firms are still around, such as Fattorini and Firmin & Sons.

And the historic skills-base still feeds into Jewellery Quarter firms who make designer cuff-links, broches (badges for the middle-aged?) and tie-clips — such as LBB

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