News

New Stockist: October31st

If you wish it was Halloween all year round*, you’re going to love my newest stockist! October31st is a UK-based online store dedicated to everything spooky so you can get your Halloween fix without waiting until October.

october31st

They’ve just relaunched their website and it includes quite a few of my Little Ghosts! The range includes cards, badges, brooches, stamps and patches, plus some sticker sets that I no longer have for sale myself.

october31st

There’s lots of other spooky cuteness too, including these cute cat coasters! Check it all out at October31st.co.uk.

*Personally, I would prefer 6 months of Easter and 6 months of Halloween.

Creative Work

Sister Portraits With Procreate on iPad Pro

I haven’t been sharing much of what I’ve been drawing in Procreate recently with my iPad Pro & Apple Pencil. I’ve got a post of tips coming up next week but first here’s a recent drawing and timelapse so you can see how I work now.

Japan thank you card - marceline smith

Once me and Nicolette announced we were planning another sister trip to Japan our family have been helping out with our savings. I drew this thank you card to send out after Christmas of us wearing our current favourite outfits.

marceline

You may recognise me from my current avatar! Note the tiny space shuttle necklace. I didn’t plan to draw us for the card, but I had so much fun doing me and I knew it would make for a nice keepsake.

Here’s a timelapse from Procreate of me drawing Nicolette. It starts with my own face, since we are sisters. It goes past so quickly but my general process is as follows:

  1. Sketch out the rough shapes with a brown pencil. This one was easier because I had the figure template that I had previously drawn in Illustrator. Otherwise, there can be a lot more erasing and redrawing.
  2. Use that as a guide to draw the real outline with a black pen. What you don’t see in these timelapses is all the draw line / erase / try again / erase / over and over until I get it just right.
  3. With symmetrical things like the arms, legs and dress I draw one half, duplicate the layer, flip it and then join them together.
  4. Colouring! I like to use a big charcoal brush and then erase back to the lines. It’s just easier on my wrists. If I’m using a light colour, I add a strong background so I don’t miss anything that might show up on another layer on in a transparent background.
  5. Reference. For something like the dress pattern, I pasted in a photo from Nic’s Instagram. That helps me get the pattern and colours right. Obviously, I simplified it a lot (see below). I did the same for my necklace and trainers.
  6. Repeat pattern. Since I do a lot of pattern design, it was easy for me to create a rough repeat area and then duplicate the layers to cover the dress. You can see in the video that I left too big a gap first time and had to go back and try again!
  7. Fin!

dress pattern

After I’d done both of us, I hid the backgrounds and imported us into a new file. The Japan background was just done with watercolour brushes and the text with the script calligraphy pen. I had them printed by Funky Pigeon (forgive me) so they could be sent directly, since we couldn’t both sign it personally.

I hope you enjoyed that! I’ll try to share more Procreate timelapses soon but I always have to edit them as often they have a whole other drawing first because I duplicated a previous drawing.

News

New Enamel Pins: Happy Apple & Mt Fuji Hugs

I love designing (and collecting!) enamel pins so I’ve been excited for two new ones to arrive. Want to meet them?

kawaii mt fuji japan enamel pins

Mt Fuji Hugs

A lot of people missed out on the original Mt Fuji pin so I made a new one that’s even friendlier. He just wants a hug!

kawaii apple enamel pins

Happy Apple

Not one of your 5 a day, but this little cutie will cheer up any outfit. I really like the packaging for this one.

enamel pins secure locking backs

I’ve also added the option to include a secure locking back. These can’t be pulled off the pin so are much safer if you wear your pins outdoors. Choose to add one for 50p in the dropdown of any enamel pin product, or buy a pack of 3 for £1.

kawaii enamel pins

My pins are quite a little gang now. Check them all out in the enamel pins section of my shop.

Free Things!

PO Box & Mail Swap

I recently fulfilled a life long dream and now have a PO Box! UK/EU laws require me to publish my address all over the place and it was starting to feel a little uncomfortable. It also opens up opportunities for fun! By which I mean SURPRISE MAIL SWAP.

PO Box - askingfortrouble

I love sending and receiving surprise mail, but it’s not really that much of a surprise when you have to ask for the address. I’ve always wanted to revive the Summer Postcard Club so this is a good replacement and runs all year round. You don’t need to restrict yourself to postcards either.

postcards

So, a promise! If you send something to my PO Box, I promise I will send you something in return, even internationally. It may take a while but it will happen.

You can find the address on my Contact page so I look forward to hearing from you and will be stalking the postman even more than usual.

Shopping

Recent Purchases – January

I’ve scheduled in one of these posts for every month this year so I’ll remember to share all the fun stuff I buy. I sensibly put all my Christmas money in my Japan savings account so I didn’t buy that much in January.

keyring

I did stalk Eva Stalinski on Instagram waiting for her to reopen her shop so I could buy one of these sad keys for my keyring. As soon as I saw it, I had to have one. My keys are pretty boring (and both for my front door) so this is perfect to add some cuteness.

enamel pins

I bought some enamel pins from my wish list as well. I’ve had my eye on the ghosts from Northern Spells and then couldn’t resist a snow bunny too.

enamel pins

I also got my pins from the Crowded Teeth Kickstarter (I love Saturn Sprinkles so much!), a night sky pin by Danger In Design and a Rainbowholic rainbow pin, which will be going on my spring/autumn jacket.

enamel pins

Some of these pins were bigger than I expected so my board is running out of space. I already have a bigger one but I need to paint it first.

speaker

To help my goal of listening to more new music, I bought a Bluetooth speaker. I didn’t realise quite how life changing this would be, but the sound is much better than my laptop speakers and I can easily carry it around the house for packing orders, cooking or cleaning.

sharpies

And finally, pens! I have bought quite a lot of stuff for my journal, but I already showed you most of it. These Twin Tip Sharpies have become my favourite pens for journalling – both tips are great for writing, they don’t bleed and the colours are perfect. The light blue and navy blue are my favourites.

rainbow mail

I also got some Rainbow Mail from Rainbowholic but you can read more about that in my post with Natasja at Super Cute Kawaii.