Asking For Trouble is the creative pseudonym of Marceline Smith, an illustrator, blogger, designer and zinemaker based on the West Coast of Scotland. 

Marceline Smith

Originally trained as a printmaker, I found a new outlet for my love of colour and pattern by designing a range of handmade and printed products featuring my cute and colourful characters. I started Asking For Trouble in 2007 and have been working full-time on my creative projects since 2008. 

Starting with doodles from my sketchbook, or ideas that pop into my head, I work them into designs and patterns in Illustrator or Procreate. Then it's the difficult job of deciding what to get them printed on - printed paper goods, fabric yardage or even cut in wood or acrylic. The current range includes stickers, cards, notepads, pins & brooches, badges, keyrings and more. I collaborate with other makers to create cross stitch kits and polymer stamps and I also license my designs to companies internationally, where they appear on everything from mugs and iPhone cases to shower curtains and bedding!

My work is very much inspired by Japan and my visits there - I love the mix of happy kawaii characters on every corner juxtaposed by the traditional patterns of kimono and chiyogami paper. Most of all, my aim is to make you smile!

How I Got Here

I'm originally from Lossiemouth on the North East coast of Scotland, studied Printmaking at Gray's School of Art in Aberdeen and lived for 14 years in Glasgow before moving back to the seaside at Helensburgh in 2014. I've been a music writer, live concert photographer, computer technician and corporate designer before going it alone as a freelance web designer, illustrator, blogger and product designer.

Other Projects

I'm the co-founder and editor of popular daily kawaii blog Super Cute Kawaii and write blog posts there every week. I've been self-publishing my writing and art in zines and books since I was a teenager, and fulfilled a lifelong dream by publishing a real book with Pop Press/Penguin in 2019, The Super Cute Book of Kawaii. If I have any spare time, I help creative clients build Shopify stores (see my portfolio).


If you have an enquiry, or would like more information about anything, please contact me or have a read of my Press Features & Interviews and Frequently Asked Questions.