National Blemish Week

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A face that is covered in blemishes and smiling with back teeth  surrounded by red text on a white background.

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This button was part of a collection released by Topps in 1966-67 called Ugly Buttons. Comic book artist Norman Saunders designed and painted 11 of the series of 24 buttons, while Wally Wood designed 13 (including "National Blemish Week") that were painted by an unknown artist. According to a site maintained by Saunders’s son David Saunders that documents his father’s life and work, not many of the buttons have survived, possibly due to the design of the tin back pin, which had a hair-trigger clasp that was prone to falling off.

In 1890 Morris Shorin founded tobacco distributor American Leaf Tobacco. World War I and the Great Depression caused the company to face financial difficulties, so Shorin’s four sons decided to relaunch it in 1938 as a chewing gum provider called Topps. One of the company’s earliest products was Bazooka bubble gum. In 1951 Topps released its first series of baseball cards. Over subsequent decades Topps created cards and other collectibles, such as buttons, for various sports and aspects of popular culture. Wood (1927-1981) was a comic book writer and artist who created items for Topps in the 1960s. In addition to the Ugly Buttons series, he and Saunders also designed the popular Mars Attacks science fiction trading cards.

Saunders, D. [n.d.]. Ugly buttons. Retrieved from

Catalog ID HU0033