It feels like we blinked and now we're at the end of another wild year. As the final chords of 2023 play out, we find ourselves reminiscing about the past 365 days at Pins.
One thing we've always stood by, since the day we launched in 2009, is that this whole business isn't just about a print on a t-shirt. Of course, we take pride in providing top-class service and producing quality products, but at the end of the day, we wouldn't be where we are without this incredible community of musicians, artists, bands and brands.
That's why it's so exciting to reflect on the year and see how our community has grown. It's made us pretty stoked for next year!
Before we get all soppy and drag this thing out, here's our Pins 2023 Wrapped, if you will.
PINS TATTOO CLUB TURNS 1
Our tattoo merch division, Pins Tattoo Club, turned one year old in November! It has really been an exciting journey seeing the Pins tattoo community grow.
We partnered with Cornwall Tattoo Show in the UK and Bulgaria Tattoo Expo in Europe to provide some tasty tattoo merch and look forward to more convention sponsorships next year.
Our studio also hosted a fun flash day with The Body Architects, with live music by SA music legends We Kill Cowboys.
ICYMI, we started including other unsung heroes of the industry into our spotlight features - a spin-off of the Merchandiser Spotlight that we've been running for about a year now.
This includes merch designers, photographers, directors, tour managers, and more. You can read some of the latest ones on our blog here.
We hope to grow this feature segment to include a more diverse range of experts within the music industry and really highlight the incredible work of those individuals behind-the-scenes.
TECH-FEST SEND-OFF & DAMNATION FESTIVAL
We're honoured that we got to partner with UK: Tech-Fest the last couple of years and build a good relationship with their team. We're sad that there won't be a Tech-Fest in 2024, as it was always a highlight of our year. (Fingers crossed that the team will make a return soon.)
Another highlight of our year regarding festivals is Damnation, of course, and this year was nothing short of amazing. We got to cook up some mint merch and enjoy the sick line-ups both festivals had to offer.
Rather late than never, right? We decided (begrudgingly) to set up a TikTok mid-year, and it's actually been pretty fun making some more lighthearted content. We don't know what we're doing here, so bear with us!
Follow us here if you feel like it.
Alongside the expanded spotlight features, we also have our The Scene playlist which went global this year. Working with clients from around the globe, it was only fair to start including good tunes from all over, and the playlist now stands at over 1000 new releases included this year. Here's to another year of bangers!
Damnation and Tech-Fest weren't the only parties we attended this year. We also had the honour of sponsoring our friends over at Takedown Festival in the UK and Ramfest in South Africa, each festival showcasing an incredible line-up of talented artists.
We're so glad events like this are in full swing again, and we're stoked to get more involved with festivals in 2024.
MERCH FOR GOOD
Merch for Good is a collection of exclusive t-shirts designed by some of the world's biggest artists & musicians. 100% of profits from each sale go directly to Trekstok, a UK charity dedicated to supporting young people living with cancer.
We're proud to have partnered with Merch for Good since April of this year to provide all printing and fulfilment services for this inspiring company.
METAL MERCH DAY
We played dress-up for a day in support of Metal for Good's Metal Merch Day. Since we wear music merch every day, we thought it fitting to spin it on its head for a day and go the opposite. Let's just say, we'll leave the suit and ties to the corporate world.
With more bands and musicians releasing vinyl, we thought it was about time we added some customizable slipmats to our product range. These turned out to be highly popular, with some bands choosing to include them as freebies in their vinyl sales.
As we bid farewell to a year filled with good music, tight deadlines and thousands of t-shirts, we acknowledge that Pins & Knuckles truly wouldn't be what it was today without our loyal clients and fellow musos.
Here's to a new year, where we continue to amplify the voices and stories that make the music and alternative scene a vibrant and interconnected tapestry. Thank you for being part of this journey, see you in 2024!