Poppy appeal

The Poppy pin badge for Remembrance Day so well designed that you take it for granted. Mass produced, everyone can wear this badge. Die cut crimped red paper flower, symbolic of blood, a green leaf, a bright green plastic stem and black centre with raised letters. It is fixed with dress making pin which is handed out with the badge. You give what you want for the badge. The money is a donation to charity and the badge is a display of your support for the cause.

Other more elaborate versions of this badge are made – in enamel or other materials. They have a fixed price. When you pay for them, are you judging the worth of the object? It is not disposable. Do you save it for next year? The relationship with the buyer is different.

The paper version is so simple and egalitarian, it makes the others seem misplaced. It has something in common with Andy Warhol’s comment on Coke. A bottle of coke is always the same. The President cannot have a better coke than the person in the street.

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