Logo Design Love

on logos and brand identity design


The smiley face was the symbol for the acid house generation.

Smiley logo
Smiley badge image via the British Museum

“Originally designed in 1964 as a logo for an insurance company, the smiley face was hijacked briefly by American counter culture in the 70s, before crashing back into popular consciousness with acid house in the late 80s.”

Quoted from Channel 4’s How Clubbing Changed the World.

Smiley badges
Photo credit: JammyJoker

“We adopted the logo. It represented what we were about: peace, love, unity, and happiness.”

Brings back some memories.

The full documentary is available to watch on YouTube (link removed in May 2014, no longer available, sorry).

Logo Design Love: A Guide to Creating Iconic Brand Identities, second edition

5 appreciated comments

  1. “Brings back some memories.”

    it does =)

  2. I’m loving this. Esspecially the fact that the smiley logo was used for contrusting purposes.

    I remember watching ‘How HipHop Changed the World’ last year, also with Idris Elba presenting. That was also a very cool documentery, that really opened my eyes to the influences. I loved it. Plus, Idris is one of my favourite actors :)

  3. Meredith

    What would emoticons be without dear ol’ smiley?

  4. meredith

    This has nothing to do with smiley…..just a cool logo video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=svOrt6w55P4&feature=related

  5. Will S

    As far as brands go, smiley face reminds me of the old Labatt Blue ads “Blue smiles along with you”. Also the old Blue bottle caps with the smiley face logo or sayings on the caps that mentioned ‘smile’ on them.

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