A Pin Trading Novice Meets her Muse

Entertainment Reviews

I come from a family of collectors. My Grandmother collected crystal bells. My Grandad collected model eagles and pen knives. My Aunt collected key chains. My Great Grandmother collected leather bookmarks. My cousin has a Bat Cave. I could keep going, really, I could. So I do have hoarder tendencies for the most part, yet there are certain things that are not hoarded, but carefully curated. In the past decade it seems that my particular poisons have become less and less popular. And so my collection of floating pens grows by maybe one pen every other year, while I find myself voluntarily relinquishing my erasers, unless of course I come across a rainbow.

All Images: Sarah Pinault

I have resisted pin trading. And when I say “resisted” I mean that since my in-laws returned from Disney World 9 years ago with lanyards covered in pins, I have quarterly talked myself down off the ledge before leaping full body into the world of pin trading. I have spent countless hours scrolling through Ebay, and Pinterest, and Instagram, and Facebook marketplace, marveling at the enamel wonders within. Did I mention my dad collected pins and buttons for most of my formative years? I may have a genetic predisposition to this that it’s best not to fight. I was due to attend a conference at Disney World this April, that was sadly canceled. I had already begun prepping my Ebay purchases, and scouring online for the best possible pin trading locations.

Then came Pinny Arcade’s collaboration with Animal Crossing New Horizons, and dear reader, I dove straight in.

The new pins from Penny Arcade’s Pinny Arcade line are exactly as they should be. A set of four consisting of Tom Nook, Isabelle, Timmy and Tommy, and KK, well be still my beating heart. This set retails for $30, which is just $7.50 a pin and seems cheap for brand new pins as far as this newb can see. Measuring 1 in tall and 0.5 in wide (reverse that for Timmy and Tommy) the color on these pins is even more vibrant than the pictures led me to believe. There is also a Christmas themed Animal Crossing set, but my husband appears to have hidden my credit card! If the next set includes Pascal and Gulliver, there will truly be no hope for me. As soon as these arrived I was instantly raiding my velvet jacket from 1995, and my jewelry boxes in search of the stragglers that had made their way into my hands over the years.

Had I known the sheer joy of attaching pin to lanyard years ago, I fear I may have walked this path many moons earlier (that’s no moon, it’s a pin). Kuchi Kopi was an impulse purchase two years ago, when I was in the beginning stages of my love affair with Bob and his burgers. Kuchi Kopi being a family favorite, I purchased a blind box hoping but not daring to dream that I would actually get the pin I wanted, and I got him.

In a similar way, when I opened my blind box Mario pins from Penny Arcade, I hoped and was rewarded with Yoshi, who has been my favorite driver since the early nineties. My son quickly stole KK from the Animal Crossing set, while I quickly stole my husband’s Storm Trooper, a gift from his parents on the trip to Disney World that stoked the fires of this collector’s heart. Gonzo and Tigger are products of the same trip.

But where do I go from here? Do I wait until the parks reopen in full and take the long postponed journey down I-95 from Maine to Orlando? Do I contact that local Facebook Marketplace seller? Do I join a club? Do I start trading with friends? The possibilities appear to be endless, and my enthusiasm just in it’s toddler years. I have so much more to come. Though if you see a rainbow eraser, or floating pen, please, still let me know!

GeekMom received various Super Mario and Animal Crossing items for review, the natural bent towards obsessive collection is a personal problem.

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