‘Safety first!’: How We Make Maovember Pins.


maovember 2014 CCP 1.jpg

Safety first!” is the motto at Central Pin Processing (CPP) when it comes to making our maovember pins, a key source of revenue in the mission to fund cataract surgery in rural China.

How do we make pins?

First, there is an intense design process during which dozens of adjustments are made based on input from dozens of sources. You wouldn’t believe the fistfights we have over fonts and kerning!

Next, we head to a trusted printer to get top-notch paper versions, with our preferred production size an A4 sheet.

Then each label is painstakingly separated from that sheet using a manual cutter. You want hand-crafted? Go CPP!

After that, we move to the assembly line for a two-step process using the pin machine we affectionately call “Old Tavvy“. First, we press the maovember design between a plastic covering and a metal backing. Then, we press that trio onto the base, including the metal pin mechanism.

That’s it! After numbering and bagging the pins for delivery, we enjoy a nice cup of coffee while giving each other thumbs ups in our clean and safe environment. This year, we have already successfully completed six production runs without any injuries!

Just to stress that we follow “best pin practices”, here is an example of what we don’t do:

maovember 2014 cpp

Maovember focuses on quirky events for good causes. Our 2022 partner is Library Project, which has furnished thousands of reading rooms in rural schools. Learn more about Maovember here. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.