The first person to cash in on the smiley face was American graphic designer Harvey Ball, who was paid $45 to create a symbol to cheer up staff at an ailing insurance company. Before that, smileys had cropped up in various guises – Czech monk Bernard Hennet used them in his signature in the 1740s, while a crudely drawn face was discovered on a pot from 1700BC. But it was French journalist Franklin Loufrani who would finally trademark the image, launching The Smiley Company in 1972 as an uplifting symbol of “good news” in France Soir.

Roxanne First gold, diamond and sapphire Rainbow Smiley signet ring, £865
Roxanne First gold, diamond and sapphire Rainbow Smiley signet ring, £865

The emblem has endured: at 50, Smiley is registered in more than 100 countries, and distributes 68mn beaming products per year. Even jewellers have cottoned on, with designers using smileys to embellish earrings, pendants and diamond-speckled bracelets. Some pieces have full grins, their mouths filled with coloured sapphires; others add simpers to freshwater pearls. Layer with warm metals to give a cluttered, sunny twist.

Because I’m happy . . . 

Noa rose-gold and diamond Smiley mini pendant, £2,650
Noa rose-gold and diamond Smiley mini pendant, £2,650
Alison Lou gold Right On ring, $1,485
Alison Lou gold Right On ring, $1,485
Tiffany & Co rose-gold and diamond Tiffany T Smile earrings, £1,725 
Tiffany & Co rose-gold and diamond Tiffany T Smile earrings, £1,725 
Annoushka gold, diamond and yellow-sapphire Smiley Face charm, £3,900
Annoushka gold, diamond and yellow-sapphire Smiley Face charm, £3,900
EF Collection gold and diamond Happiness bracelet, £540
EF Collection gold and diamond Happiness bracelet, £540
Sydney Evan gold Happy Face hoop earrings, $870
Sydney Evan gold Happy Face hoop earrings, $870

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