A box shape that has a button, when you click the button the box opens, when you choose the emote the box closes.
Another option would be to have the whole strip going along the top of the hotkey command bar, its long enough lol
people can usually determine my mood by what I say not by a stupid smiley face... I don't want or need to see 120893471209378120938 icons at the bottom of the screen. Delete them and have an option to open an icon window for those candy enough to want emotes.