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Devoted to Denim: My Pinned, Patched, Perfect Jean Jacket

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Winona chapter.

There has been immense growth in the buying and personalizing of denim jackets, especially because there are so many different aesthetics to choose from, whether you want vintage, preppy, or a cluster of different niches in one killer accessory piece. If you’re lucky enough, your parents may have saved their beloved Levis or you can walk into any Forever 21 and find denim of every wash, distress level, and overall cool factor.


For some, it’s a wardrobe accent and for others, it’s a denim suit of armor. But no matter your devotion, there’s no arguing that the world is a better place for having patches and pins for practically every interest. I loved my jean jacket before I began this process, but every piece of the puzzle tells a bigger story, and coincidentally also a story about me. So here goes nothing: the complete breakdown of my patchy, pinned-to-almost-perfection denim jacket.


  • Chicago: One of my favorite things about living in the suburbs of Illinois is my proximity to downtown Chicago. My bestie Jess and I like to pour over all sorts of goodies in pin and patch shops, and I believe I found these at a store called Foursided on Clark St. I loved the Chicago dog because it’s a staple of the city as well as Rail Rider for the routes on the El, even though I’m anything but.

  • Cycle Sisters: This one was awesome because it says Cycle Sisters so it could be the phases of the moon or a well-executed, subtle period cycle joke; it’s for you to decide!

  • Everybody feels like you: This graphic heart is so, so, so cute. I put it right on the pocket as a reminder that even though it can be difficult wearing my heart on (or close to) my sleeve, at some point or another, “everyone feels like you”.


  • Frida Kahlo: This little dress is so quaint, and Frida is a strong woman with stronger brows. Of course I needed her! Also from Foursided.

  • Cher and Dionne: As another friendship foundation, bestie Jess and I ADORE the movie Clueless. It’s been a staple in our friendship since freshman year and so this pin set of two was perfect for us. I gave it to her as a grad present. She has Dionne on her upper lapel and my Cher pin is right on the breast pocket. Leave this pin off my jacket? Ugh, as if!

  • Moon baby: Keeping the theme with the Cycle Sisters, this moon just looked so cherubic and happy-go-lucky. I don’t really know what a moon baby is, but I’ve always loved the saying, “live by the sun, love by the moon”.

  • “Her Story” pin: This was found in my latest visit to Foursided, and I LOVE it so much because it’s a cute little graphic pencil that has Her Story flowing from the pencil. It perfectly encapsulates my love for writing as well as a female-forward feeling that accompanies writing alongside so many strong and sassy souls in Her Campus. In. Love.

  • Newsreel is watching you: I found this thrifting at Treasures Under Sugar Loaf. I could have spent HOURS going through the buckets of vintage pins, but this one jumped out at me because I’m a Mass Comm nerd, and it reminded me of Mass Media and Society.

  • Relatively stable: Not only is it how I feel on a daily basis, but also it’s such a cute color and perfect size for a pop of sass on the lapel.

  • Cafeteria lunch victim: This was another Treasures Under Sugar Loaf. I do not consider myself a cafeteria lunch victim, but the cartoon foods were too cute to pass up. Plus it was only like 50 cents!

  • Misc: One of my biggest weaknesses is bulk buttons and pins. The miscellaneous pins range from a feminist symbol to an ominous-looking motorhome with an ambient glow from the windows. I have a postage stamp for a nostalgic reminder of handwritten sentiments, a Rosie the Riveter for a flash of female empowerment, and other little cute symbols that I can’t explain other than I’m a little obsessed (followed by the justification that they can usually be purchased with pocket change).

As is probably evident by this article, I have a fondness for all sorts of punchy graphics and statements that speak truths about me, so much so that I made a deal with myself where I cannot buy new pins and patches until all my previous purchases are on the jacket. While my blue jean baby is far from being complete, I hope this article gave you a little insight into who I ampins and patches and all.


My name is Hannah Hippensteel, and I like to say I'm a Chicago city-slicker, but I'm actually from the 'burbs. I'm currently a senior at Winona State with a major in mass communication-journalism and a minor in sociology. Catch me enjoying all Winona has to offer: the bluffs, the incomparable Bloedow's Bakery, and not to mention, Minnesota boys. With a goal of working at Teen Vogue, Seventeen or Glamour magazine, I'm soaking up every opportunity to keep my finger on the pulse and share my personal voice!
| 2018-20 Club President/Campus Correspondent | Hailey Seipel is a senior at Winona State University who is studying Applied & Professional Writing and Journalism. She has been passionate about writing ever since she was little, and a dream of hers is to author poetry, sci-fi and romance novels. Until then, she is interested in working as a creative/blog writer, technical editor or project coordinator after graduating. In her free time, Hailey enjoys listening to music and reading leisurely.