asking for trouble

11 Years of Blogging: May

It’s the last post in this series! It’s been a lot of fun for me to see what I was blogging about every month from 2008-2019, so let’s have a look at May.


May 2008 has a big Asking For Trouble milestone – the time I made a rash promise to bake Shopify a cake and ended up sewing them a cupcake finger puppet, which I named Cakeify. That was my first original kawaii character, who eventually turned up on some products. I also invented Book Hearts, experimented with fabric-covered notebooks and made more Geisha gocco prints. It was also nice to reminisce about my last time at All Tomorrow’s Parties – a music festival at a holiday camp. I will never forget watching the penultimate episode of LOST with my pals in a chalet instead of the live bands we had paid money to see. This recap we all did on diskant is still hilarious.


May 2009 has another felt Cakeify, this time in plush form with his friends. I still have these on my studio sofa. I also came up with some new Cutie Fruity characters, which came from sketchbook doodles. New things included vintage flower badges and some new shoes at Zazzle.


May 2010 doesn’t have much of interest at all but I did get a test copy of my first Busy Bee Organiser made (and shared the design inspiration from my actual to-do list). I also designed some tiny cards in tracing paper envelopes, which I later used as inspiration for my folded gift tags.


May 2011 has me very busy planning and launching my zine distro Pushpin Zines. I had a lot of fun with that and still love the design – I wish it had been more successful, but I just didn’t have enough time for it. I was updating my Tokyo Shopping Guide too with posts on Character Street and Design Festa, where I bought this amazing Bunny Sushi Guide.


May 2012 has a really nice press photo from when my products were featured in Wish magazine. I also did some origami to try out my new origami paper packs and other new products included colouring books and wooden Pancake brooches.


May 2013 has my favourite Day in the Life post ever, where I did post-it note doodles. Look out for some new DITL stuff on Patreon next month! I finished my seasonal fruit and vegetables charts – little knowing they would become one of my best selling products – and was also doing some cross stitch for fun.


May 2014 is a very busy one! I was still organising my new flat including a custom made planet doormat and hanging maps on my walls. I shared a look at the process of redesigning my Cookie Cute gift wrap, and also added 3 new cards and some stationery. I had the honour of being drawn by Kookizu and interviewed by Momiji. And I went on a mini trip to London and Leeds including the Pick Me Up art event.


May 2015 is a 5 A Day month with new gift wrap and Carrot & Pear brooches – I must bring those back as wooden pins sometime. I shared some advice posts including my on-demand design process and how to deal with complaints (as both a customer and shop owner), while the My Art History series covered my years at Moray College (between high school and art school).

star pins


May 2016 is when I was away in Japan by myself for 3 weeks! I shared some last minute planning and did a Day in the Life post while I was there. I also revealed the exclusive products I’d made for Super Cute Box and there were some new on-demand products including paper cups & plates, towels and zipper pouches.

kawaii wooden brooches - askingfortrouble


May 2017 has me still blogging about that 2016 Japan trip including visits to Osaka, Arashiyama & Kyoto and Nagoya, plus a guide to seasonal flower festivals and what to do on a Tokyo layover. My paper craft tutorial is for Peapods and I also share some tips on promoting your on-demand stores. I launched my first set of wooden brooches and designed some new packaging.

100 Days of Kawaii Characters


May 2018 has me busy with my 100 Days of Kawaii Characters – and using them for Spoonflower fabric. I shared some of my design process for repeat patterns including Mt Fuji & Bumblebees and Solar System and a long life update.

If you’re reading this in the future, you can also check out all my posts for May 2019 or catch up on the whole series. I hope you enjoyed reading these posts – and thanks again to Laura for the idea.


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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