asking for trouble

Goodbye 2014

(illustration of me by Kookizu)

2014 was a pretty exciting year for me, what with moving house and quite a few trips, not to mention a pretty successful year for Asking For Trouble. Here’s what I got up to.

I'm a Featured Designer on Zazzle!


2014 started off well as I achieved one of my business ambitions by becoming a Zazzle Featured Designer with a big old interview. I added my first product of the year – We Make A Great Pair cards – and launched a new series of Japan interviews, starting with Emma of Emuse.

zazzle lunch boxes


February was a big decluttering month as I was spending a lot of time looking up and checking out flats in Helensburgh. Once I found my flat I realised I still needed to get rid of a LOT of stuff, though that didn’t stop me starting a new tapestry project, New products included cut and sew patterns for my Look Around coin purses, lunch boxes and some badge sets.

Spent the afternoon inside this. Pretty ace.


March was quiet on the blog, but very busy in real life as I moved to Helensburgh. Once I was settled, I shared a few corners of my new home and bought one of my pancake clocks from Society6 before going off on holiday to Brussels where we had an awesome time.

New view - now working from the sofa in my studio.


In April, I started working in my new studio/spare room, explored my new neighbourhood and checked out the local handcrafts show. I also shared some sneak peeks at new products, which all turned out to be pretty popular.

planet doormat


I started May out of town with a few days in London and Leeds, including Kyary Pamyu Pamyu live, Pick Me Up and A Deth P Sun exhibition. I shared a new Kaiwa Japan interview with Alan Bearos, was interviewed myself by Momiji, and was super-delighted to be drawn by the amazing Kookizu! I redesigned my Cookie Cute gift wrap, little knowing it would end up my biggest seller of the year and I would spend most of November & December folding and posting the stuff! Most excitingly, my custom designed doormat arrived!

say hello to the solar system


In June, I started a daily photo project, sharing A Book A Day, and moved my Japan Links posts to their own Kaiwa Japan Tumblr. I finally finished my Solar System characters, including an exclusive badge set for Shana Logic, and also welcomed back a new batch of my Sew Cute rainboots. I started updating my shop design and shared the process of designing some new sewing notions fabrics for a Spoonflower contest.

Finally got some pictures up at the weekend!


In July, I mostly enjoyed the lovely weather living my the seaside and also started hanging up some pictures. I added Too Wrapped Up to my stockists who also interviewed me for their blog. My sister came to visit and we reviewed lots of hilarious Japanese candy for SCK. I guiltily shared my pile of unfinished craft projects, but got lots done on my tapestry cushion while watching all the Commonwealth Games.

The Waverley!


In August, I signed up for two daily challenges, despite also taking a long Summer holiday. I managed to complete the daily business photo one, but I’m still saving all the Spoonflower drawing prompts for a a quieter time. With my time off, I finished my tapestry cushion, took a trip up North, finally caught a tarantula in Animal Crossing, designed new 5 Year Diaries and started playing with my new paper cutter. I also shared some throughts on making in a Blog Hop.



I spent a lot of September trying to wrangle my paper cutting machine, but eventually got some notebooks up for sale. I celebrated six months of living in Helensburgh by hanging some more pictures on my walls and signing up for my first local craft fair (it didn’t go well). My long-awaited stickers launched on Redbubble and I got some new polymer stamps made too.

glitter ghost


October was super-busy as I was working hard on the branding for my friends’ new post office/cafe/shop Penny Black. I also designed some new calendars for 2015 and interviewed Rachael of Hannah Zakari for Kaiwa Japan, the same week she interviewed me for their 10 Year anniversary! There was also time for a bit of a Halloween frenzy with a ghost garland printable, glitter ghost brooches and even some ghost marshmallows.

penny black


November was when Christmas orders started piling up, which I enjoyed decorating with doodles and do not bend banana stickers. I didn’t have time for much else, though I did make it to the Penny Black launch party to see all our hard work paying off amazingly. I teamed up with Walls Need Love for some cute decals and wallpaper and found the time to order a few new products including Jammie Dodger brooches and put together a pile of cross stitch kits. And I even managed to get started on a window seat project with my dad.

Having to put up my Christmas decorations in 15 minute bursts between more important tasks. Mantelpiece finally looking festively cute!


December was just orders orders orders with piles of gift wrap heading out the door! I did find time to make a jewellery display board and decorate my home for Christmas in kawaii style. I also shared a couple of new festive printables – a Snow Day garland and Cookie Cute Christmas cards, before shutting up shop and heading Up North for Christmas.

It’s definitely been a busy year! Here’s hoping 2015 will be just as fun.


Hello! I’m Marceline Smith, the designer and owner of Asking For Trouble. I create illustrated stationery, accessories and gifts using my cute characters inspired by Japanese kawaii. This is my business and personal blog where I write about my creative doings, inspirations, travels, Japan trips and daily life. Read more »

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All text, photos and illustrations are © Marceline Smith 2007-2024 unless credited otherwise. You may repost my images with full credit and link. However, do not reproduce full posts without my permission or use my images or writing for commercial purposes. Thank you!


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