Disney Pins from around the World

This week I thought I would discuss Disney Pins. On my first trip to Disneyland in 2015, I had no idea about Pins - and I certainly had no idea just how many different types and themes there were. In the Disney store (Downtown Disney) there are entire rooms of Pins! So much choice it was overwhelming.

In the parks, people had their pins mostly attached to their lanyards. Usually, they have a theme going. Say, if you love Peter Pan, you might have a Peter Pan, Tinkerbell and Pirate themed pins on your lanyard I also saw Pins attached to bags and clothing. I spoke to several Pin collectors in the Disney stores - one guy had them all attached to his denim jacket and I was in total awe of his collection that he was just wearing. He said that you needed these special metal protectors on the other side of the pins so that the pins did not fall of the jacket! With the average Pin costing $10 USD, they are not cheap to lose! 

During the Millennium celebration in 1999, people began trading pins. The 2005 Piece of History set has some of the rarest pins. Each pin contains a tiny piece of an actual Disney Ride. The first in the series was the 20000 Leagues under the Sea Pin. It contains a splinter of the rides Submarine Porthole in it! The Tower of Terror Pin has a piece of the elevator cord embedded in it!
Pin trading involves swapping your Pin for someone elses in the park. In particular, Cast Members are obliged to swap with you if your Pin is an official Disney Pin. This happens in the American Parks, but not in the Asian parks at all.

Most people trade their pins, but I prefer to keep all of mine. I decided to start a collection of pins representing my favourite attraction rides as I thought it would be a nice souvenir of our trip (and small to bring back to Australia). I did not know at the time how I would display or keep them - but then I found on the internet, you can display them in a picture frame with a black felt board as backing. The images then 'pop' with their metallic colour. I love that they are all shiny and metallic, and some of the detail is astonishing, particularly the ones with moveable parts. I also love that they are truly collectible, with alot of fan sites dedicated to Pins.

The Ball moves- Just like in the ride!
I think there is actual glitter in this bottle

Mickey and his sword move back and forth

Traveling to Hong Kong and Tokyo Disneylands, I was disappointed that the selection was not as great. Hong Kong had a good range of Pins, but they were more 'generic', not relating to a popular Disney movie theme or attraction, and were generally of Mickey only. They did have a few of their unique rides though, such as Mystic Manor. Hong Kong Pins were very colourful and more elaborate (i.e the pins open up to reveal a different picture or spin around to display a new picture!). 

This was one of our favourite rides in Hong Kong Disneyland and this pin is supposed to glow in the dark (it doesn't)
This Pin spins around to reveal a new picture

This Pin opens up to reveal a hidden picture
Another of the 'glow in the dark' pins from Hong Kong Disneyland (it doesn't glow in the dark)

Hong Kong 10 year celebration Pin. This Pin opens up to reveal a picture inside (like a book)

The Tokyo Disneyland Pins however were almost non existent. I think in one store I counted about 10 pins in total - and that was the most that I saw. Most of the Pins did not indicate they were from the Japan park. The Pins were also very generic and related to the theme (Easter) at the time. 

We just happened to be at Tokyo Disneyland on this date!
Tokyo DisneySea had even fewer pins. But they did have one very big pin (that is about 5 cm long). Japan is not the 'go to' place to get Disney Pins. Apparently a long time ago there were many Pins available in Japan.  I believe there were also issues a long time ago in the Japanese parks of people buying up high numbers of the Pins in the park and reselling them outside the park at inflated prices. It is a shame that there is not a huge selection of Pins in Japan. As some of the rides in Japan are totally unique, it would have made a great souvenir of the rides there.

This was the only Tokyo DisneySea specific Pin (5cm long) I found in this park.

Lastly, one of my friends last year visited Shanghai Disneyland and bought me a Shanghai Disneyland 'One Year Anniversary' Pin! Shanghai Disneyland actively participates in Pin Trading and has a large selection of Pins to choose from.

Shanghai Disneyland Pin celebrating the parks first anniversary

There is also a distinction between a 'Limited Release' and a 'Limited Edition' pin. A Limited Release means that the Pin was released over a set time period. There could be lots made during that time. A Limited Edition means only a set number were made - say 500 pins and thats it. Also, there is what is known as the 'Scrappers' Pin - a poorer quality pin that is sold sometimes on eBay. It generally has mistakes or something is wrong with the paint work at the mmanufacturing stage. Be wary of purchasing 'Scrappers Pins' online by mistake.

Hope you enjoyed reading about Pins from around the world. I keep mine in a black picture frame with black felt backing. At the moment, there are a few non-Disney pins on my board - but in time - they will all be Disney:

To read more about DisneySea and Disneyland's around the world, please go to:
Tokyo Disneyland

Until next week,
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Anonymous said…
Oh these are cute! We have been to Disney HK and Disney World Florida but we've only collected pins from Disney World - what a bummer.
KJ said…
Thanks for your comments. A good excuse to go back to get more Disney pins!

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