Jeffrey A. Garoutte
If you were a girl during the
1980s, you probably were given friendship
pins. . .and, more than likely, you created a multitude of your
own and gave them away to all of your girlfriends as well.
pins have been a long-standing, easy craft item for decades and,
even today, there are web sites dedicated to nothing but
friendship pins and the patterns that the tiny beads can make by
placing several of the safety pins together in a row. Kids make
them. . .senior citizens make them. . .but in the early 80s, girls made them.
If you were a proud recipient of a
coveted friendship pin, you proudly displayed it (along with every other
friendship pin that you received) on your tennis shoes, attaching them
to your shoe laces. Whether you wore leather hi-top Reeboks, kangaroos,
jazz shoes or a worn out pair of Chuck Taylor’s, if you had friends, you
had pins on your shoes.
We found this very helpful color code
online (see below). But, I'll admit that I was unaware that
specific colors carried any particular meaning at the time. The
friendship pin was just fun to make and receive. The colors had
more to do with the personal taste of the maker than any overt message.
Universal Bead Color Code
• White: gentle, pussycat
• Red: strong, vigorous, sweetheart
• Orange: calm, buddy
• Yellow: intelligent, good friend
Green: envious, enemy
• Turquoise: sensitive
• Blue: happy, hugs and kisses
• Black: sad
Because of the ease and low cost, this is a trend that is still going
strong today. They even still make their way into today's
fashions. Check out this super
cool friendship pin watch on
If you are planning an 80s party, how fun would it be to set up a pin
making station with all the supplies for guests to make their own pins.