Sardines! Tiny fish, packed in a can! The stuff of cartoons, the primary example of cramped quarters, a humble and inexpensive food, found almost everywhere.
So many of these come from Morocco- it’s one of their big exports. I love the matte printing on the labels, and they way they are decorative and fanciful, but often not very professional-looking. Something about sardines requires a common touch.
Send Sardine boxes from your home country! I will add them if I don’t have them already- see contact page for information. (Yes, I have been working on this for years- I buy sardines when I travel.) Thanks to everyone who has helped put this together thusfar. The collection is over seventy different boxes already.
And this sardine looks angry, in red and blue.
Mysterious cans with no signs of sardines…
This is my favorite one- psychedelic sardines! And a porron! And the backside, with the unappealing photo of sardines.
Oh oh!! One thing sardines should probably NOT be, is “Sparkly”!
This is my favorite minimal design for a sardine label, it also looks like it came from 70 years ago.
Scary packaging, unappetising. But the sardines were actually quite delicious.
A poetic image- that mackerels are like leaves of gold…
Fishing boats are for anchovies (are anchovies less cute than sardines?). The one on the right is Basque, and uses the Basque name first- Ondarroa (Vizcaya).
Showing the actual mushy fish doesn’t seem like such a great advertisement, but it’s quite common. I like sardine drawings better.
Sometimes bold graphics are enough, simple.
National Sardine Pride!: Here is Canada, and Spain
** Open call- if anyone has sardine boxes that they are willing to share, please write to me! I would love to include yours in my list.