The Badge Works story started about 80 years ago, when the Patrick Brothers purchased an industrial property that was then situated on Drewery Lane in the Melbourne CBD.
It begun life as a photography studio, but with a bit of a twist, they would mount the photos onto badges.
Over the years they developed the badge side of company and the Patrick Family were the first to design and produce the “one-piece badge”,
which is a single piece of tin wrapped around with the pin on top.
During the war times when materials couldnt be sourced from Japan they had to be reproduced locally, so The Badge Works begun using plastic moulds for ping pong balls, kupi dolls and all sorts. The war brought on lots of need for badges to both support and oppose the war. Conscription badges can be found the Melbourne Museum, along with various historic appeals over the years such as Aboriginal rights.
In the 70s The Badge Works moved to the giant warehouse in North Melbourne where it is situated today. Like an industrial wonderland, inside is a symphony of tin slicing, badge punching and decades of Australian history. In the archives of badges produced over the years are all the great sportsmen, like Bradman and the entire 1940s cricket team, through to famous Aussie slogans like Give Gough A Go!
Today The Badge Works, and it’s parent company Patrick Australia Pty Ltd are run by John Patrick, the grandson of it’s founder. John was a printer by trade, one of his giant single colour printers can still be seen in the The Badge Works today, although it hasn’t been turned on in decades! John took over the business in the 90s when his father was no longer able to run to business due to his health. He is one of the nicest guys you’re likely to meet.
The Willy Wonker of the badge world.