The top three iconic badge designs: throughout time
Can you remember how you felt, when you were a child, when you were given an award for work well done?
Those colourful cloth badges for each ten metre milestone achieved in the swimming pool? The shiny enamel badges for dance or sports? The school badge when you became a prefect, or head girl or boy?
It was always a thrill to stick a certificate on the wall, but a badge was something you could wear to show off your achievements and skills. It was a potent reminder that you not only belonged to an organisation, but had received recognition for achieving something.
While many of us may have sewn 10 metre cloth badges onto our swimming costumes and towels, or pinned an enamel badge onto our school blazers for our peers to admire, how many boasted owning an iconic Blue Peter badge?
Designed by the artist Tony Hart in 1963, this most distinctive of badges is instantly recognisable – and more than 500,000 have been handed out over the past 49 years.
The original was a white shield with a blue galleon. But since then, a further five colours have been introduced: green, to award environmental work; silver, for viewers who already attained a blue badge; purple, for children who take part in the show; and orange, for winners or runners-up in a Blue Peter competition.
However, the ultimate prize is the gold Blue Peter badge, which is given to people who have shown outstanding bravery and courage, or have represented their country in an international event. Recipients have included Her Majesty the Queen, David Beckham, Torvill and Dean and JK Rowling.
While few of us will attain a gold Blue Peter badge, many of us will have fond memories of being involved with the Scouting Association – as a Beaver, Cub or Scout – or Girl Guiding UK – as a Rainbow, Brownie or Guide – and working towards the myriad activity and challenge badges.
From basic cookery and artistry to sporting achievements and outdoor adventures, children and teens have long worked hard for their cloth badges and proudly worn them on their uniforms.
Staying with uniforms, there can be no prouder moment than when a member of the Armed Services receives his/her cap badge, the distinctive badge worn on uniform headgear that distinguishes regiments, ranks within regiments, organisations and nationalities.
These badge designs proffer a sense of belonging and depict the history of the regiment: such as the SAS’s King Arthur's sword, Excalibur, surrounded by flames; and the Mercian Regiment, with its striking double headed eagle. And there must be quite a story to the Royal Marines’, which comprises a lion and a crown, the word “Gibraltar”, the globe, laurels, a fouled anchor and the inscription “per mare per terram” (which translates as “By Sea, By Land”).
It doesn’t matter what kind of organisation or club you belong to, you can strengthen your sense of identity with a corporate name badge or custom made badge. We at Badges Plus help many organisations by creating personalised badges from any photograph or logo and crafting pieces that their members wear with pride.
Instil that sense of worth once more and think about how even the simplest enamel pin badge or bespoke badge can make a difference.