From The Hunger Games:
My next guest is also unexpected. Madge walks straight to me. She is not weepy or evasive, instead there’s an urgency about her tone that surprises me. “They let you wear one thing from your district in the arena. One thing to remind you of home. Will you wear this?” She holds out the circular gold pin that was on her dress earlier. I hadn’t paid much attention to it before, but now I see it’s a small bird in flight.
The past perfect tense (had + verb-ed) is used when we're referring to a past event that happened before another past event. But the sentence in question doesn't mention the other past event, so I suppose it is implied but what is it?
The excerpt is the third mention of the pin. The other two are quite far from it, my excerpt being from Chapter 3 and the others from Chapter 1, just a few paragraphs away from each other:
“You won’t be going to the Capitol,” says Gale coolly. His eyes land on a small, circular pin that adorns her dress. Real gold. Beautifully crafted. It could keep a family in bread for months.
“It’s to the Capitol’s advantage to have us divided among ourselves,” he might say if there were no ears to hear but mine. If it wasn’t reaping day. If a girl with a gold pin and no tesserae had not made what I’m sure she thought was a harmless comment.
I suppose that that was on her dress earlier refers to these two quotes from Chapter 1.