Even high-end designers are adding the playful emblems to clothes and accessories.

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“Emojis are the new black.”

So says Ellen Sideri, the founder and CEO of ESP Trendlab, a top trend forecasting and social research company in New York City. She’s referring to the raging popularity of smiley faces, hearts, rainbows and other imaginative emblems that can be found adorning garments and accessories in every category.

“Designers seem to be shifting from minimal style to a new maximal aesthetic,” Sideri says. “Fashion is becoming noisy again after many seasons of quiet simplicity.” And she adds that while, initially, emojis may have been bait for the younger set, “the desire for a bit of fantasy is striking a chord across all ages now.”

That’s evident at Saks Fifth Avenue, where a variety of graphics is moving far afield from kids and teen stuff and is decorating even the priciest designer duds.

“In ready-to-wear we are seeing a lot of symbolism that stems from the emoji influence — text embroidery, patches, applique,” says Saks fashion director Roopal Patel. “It’s playful, whimsical and something unique that taps into personal style. It’s special and something people don’t already have in their closet.”

Stacey Bendet, the CEO and creative director of Alice + Olivia, has taken the emoji trend into her own hands or, more precisely, her own image. Recently she released a series of 23 “Stacemojis” that are usable via iMessage. The cartoony #staceface character — sunglass-wearing, top-knotted — is a staple on many of the brand’s products.

But perhaps social issues have trumped trend when it comes to the rise of emojis, Sideri says. “Messaging has gone viral and a new activist consumer has emerged,” she says. “A dose of fun seems like the right medicine to combat the 24-hour news cycle we are currently faced with.”