Souriez en Français

Additional Images
Text on Button SOURIEZ en français
Image Description

Red smiley face and black text on a rust stained yellow background.

Back Paper / Back Info

Heavily rusted.

Back Style
The Shape
Additional Information

“Souriez en Français” translates to “smile in French.” This is paired with a smiley face similar to the classic yellow smiley face that was designed in 1963 by commercial artist, Harvey Ross Ball. Ball was commissioned by The State Mutual Life Insurance Company to create a happy face to raise the morale of their employees. His version was created in 10 minutes. The design was printed onto more than 50 million buttons. Neither Ball nor the company copyrighted this smiley, so it was continually used by other businesses in their promotions.

The design and concept is quite simple and was definitely used before Ball’s 1963 version. However, his has become the most iconic. Variations have been used for advertising campaigns and in popular culture ever since.


About Harvey Ball. (n.d.). Retrieved September 12, 2020, from

Catalog ID SM0206