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Happy March everyone! I've been browsing seed catalogs, ordering some gardening tools and drooling over the latest David Austin Roses catalog, so I thought I would sprout a seed on your devices, as well. This flower stems (pun intended!) from my fabric collection Lambkin for Art Gallery Fabrics!

↠ Click to download the digital desktop background 

↠ Click to download the digital smartphone background

↠ Click to download the printable PDF Desk Version

↠ Click to download all of the above as a .ZIP file

Here's a little glimpse at our month. If you'd like to follow along with all the fun, I would love to meet you over on Instagram!

March 2018 Calendars by Bonnie Christine (2)

Please note: all images, patterns and designs are © Bonnie Christine | Going Home to Roost. You may not reproduce, re-create or sell in any way, but please feel free to download for your own personal use. If you share on your own blog (I'd be delighted!) please direct your readers to this post to download the file. Thank you!  

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By far the biggest hurdle and hardship I hear when it comes to creative endeavors is about getting started and staying motivated. The not-so-fun fact that I learned when I was toying with the idea of becoming a surface pattern designer is this: it's not going to be easy. In fact, it's probably going to be one of the hardest things I do in my entire life. But realizing this actually helped me once I embraced it.  This realization pushed me to answer another hard question: do I love it that much? When the answer was undoubtedly YES, I knew there was only one thing to do. Put my head down and get to work. 

It will take sacrifice, major brain power, loads of time, weekends spent working, courage, support from family and financial sacrifice and commitment. Realizing all of this just made me dig my heels in deeper. If you feel the same way, then let's go!

The best way to get started is simply that. You must start.

Dedicate a specified amount of time every single day to learning and following your creative dream (this works no matter WHAT the goal!). Maybe it's 15 minutes, perhaps it's 4 hours. Some days will solely be spent researching where to begin or what your next step will be. Google will become your best friend! Don't fret about what you'll be doing the next week, month or even year. If you dig deep TODAY, the answers will come. You will always know your next step. It just unfolds that way.

Now how to stay motivated is an entirely different subject. If you're like me, the times that I feel the least motivated is when I've been looking around too much. Seeing everyone else's beautiful work, their new opportunities, their major successes. It makes me feel defeated and discouraged. The thing is, there will always be people ahead of you, no matter how far along you get in your journey. So my best advice when you're feeling unmotivated is to stop looking around. Turn inwards again, focus on your work at hand. Grow a deep love for yourself and where you are right now. Know that there's a reason for you at your current point, and when you've reaching the next heights new opportunities will meet you there.

If you're just having an off day and feeling the funk, give yourself some grace. Leave your work for the time being and shift things up a bit. Go outside, take a trip, try a new artwork medium. Get back to the bones of what you love. Make something because you want to, not because you have to. Those are the things that usually get my juices flowing again.

Everyone is different so I want to know - when you're working towards a new goal, how do you get started and stay motivated?

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Today, I'm so happy to share an beautiful success story with you from one of our dear Roost Tribe members, Diane Rooney. It's uplifting, happy and incredibly inspirational. Grab a cup of tea and enjoy!


Written by: Diane Rooney | @dianerooney_art

Dream. Create. Inspire. It’s at the heart of what I do. I love that every day I get to do what I love. It’s not work to me. It’s a source of joy and passion. I love the creative process and I hope what I put out into the world not only brings a bit of joy and happiness to people, but also inspires them to get creative too. I believe that we are all creative and have the right to figure out how to express that creativity.

I love sharing what I know. I love being able to help, motivate and hopefully inspire other women to pursue their dreams.

It has not always been this way. None of what I’m doing now happened overnight. And it often felt like ti would never happen at all. Even when I was finding success as a freelance digital artist and graphics designer, I had many days where I felt unworthy, miserable, incapable, scared and frustrated. Frustrated that I couldn’t seem to move forward.

I'd already overcame a devastating divorce, facing an empty nest and losing my parents. cancer within a year of each other. I knew I was strong and had it in me to take my business and creative desires to the next level. But time and again I let self-doubt creep In and so just bumbled on. Don't get me wrong. I loved what I was doing. I was working from home designing and creating graphics primarily for the craft and hobby industry. It's just that my heart was whispering something new. I kept having these visions of my designs as fabric. They were fabric in a digital world. Super imposed onto 3D objects such as soft furnishings and mock fabric shops. And they made such pretty papers for scrapbooking and other paper crafts.

I'm a great learner. I never stop learning and one of my favourite places online to learn is CreativeLive. One day I stumbled upon Bonnie teaching her Surface Pattern Design course. Even though I considered myself an expert in Illustrator, Photoshop and the fundamentals of surface pattern design, I was mesmerised by Bonnie's class. I signed up straight away and also joined her monthly membership, the Roost Tribe.

It was her gentleness and willingness to share all she knew with a genuine kind heart and authenticity you rarely see. There was no question that Bonnie believed by sharing all she knew as a successful business woman and surface pattern designer, she could inspire other women to follow her path and find their own authentic voices and success.

There and then I decided to go for my dream of having my own fabric line. Again, it wasn't overnight. I took time out most days to sketch and build up a portfolio of collections. I fine tuned and honed them in time and time again over a couple of years. I re-coloured and re-drew over and over. Her words echoing 'There's room for you" on the days I wanted to throw my hands up and give in. I persevered. I watched Bonnie's classes, over and over. So inspiring and incredibly motivating!

And then one day I decided to show my work. I signed up for a "designer's booth" at the Craft, Hobby and Stitch trade show. It's Europe's biggest trade show for the craft and hobby market for the UK and Europe. My goal was to initially show my work and get some feedback. Not only was the show a huge success for me from day one), It gave me the confidence to make appointments with a couple of fabric manufacturers that were there. I walked the show, took names and asked If I could see them on the last day -always a quiet day.

Yes, I was crazy nervous. Yes, I honestly wanted to run away. I was 52yrs old. What was I thinking?! I was surrounded by what seemed much younger, more successful designers. Doing what I wanted to do? Was there really room for me? But it only took "10 seconds of bravery' and before I knew it, I was designing my first fabric collection which Is due in shops March 2018. And I'm already designing my next one. Faith and action. It opens doors. There is something amazing about putting yourself out there. There's a knock on effect. More opportunities come your way.

Be brave. Be bold. Believe In yourself and know the there isn't any one like you. Be true to yourself, develop your own style and the rest will fall into place. Yes, it's a crowded market but there's only one you. It's what will make you stand out. Be authentic.


Psst! Enrollment for the Immersion Course opens February 19th. Are you ready? Surface Pattern Design Immersion is an 8-week Online training program for creatives who want to learn Adobe Illustrator, surface design and the business of how to become a licensing artist. It’s a completely comprehensive course, designed to give you a unique and immersive experience into the world of Surface Pattern Design. Because we all know, the best way to accomplish your BIG goals is to immerse yourself in the learning, the industry and in the community.

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I hear you. I know many of you are feeling overwhelmed, stuck or just creatively zapped. I GET IT! If you feel it, chances are I've felt it too and it's a constant effort to keep from getting sucked under.

Stop feeling stuck

STUCK is a terrible feeling. It usually means we just don't know where to start or don't know what to do next. I always try to give myself a little bit of allowance for this feeling. As creatives, we often feel like we need to be "on" all the time, but the fact is that the juices just run dry sometimes. In my experience, putting pressure on myself because I have to be creative just makes it worse. When I'm feeling stuck for short amounts of times, I try to nourish my creativity to get things going again (more on that in a moment!).

Other times STUCK can last longer than an afternoon and really start to set in. Weeks or even months (years?) can go by and that feeling of being stagnant starts to hurt. Many of you have heard my story, but if you've never heard the very beginning of it, let me share it with you:

After graduating from business school, I fell in love with fabric design. It's what I wanted to do above anything else, but it felt BIG and SCARY. I didn't know how to design and didn't have a clue on how to get started.

But I had decided that this was my dream. Period.

About 6 months went by, and though I had daydreamed about becoming a designer, I had actually done nothing in order to make this big dream come true. I believe, this is where so many creatives get STUCK. I didn't know where or how to start, and the end goal was so big that the whole thing was overwhelming. It would be much easier to just give up.

That's when it dawned on me: I should start doing just one thing every single day that takes me in the right direction towards accomplishing my dream. Simple enough, right?! So this is what I did. Over the course of the following 18 months, I did something every single day to make my dream come true. At the beginning, it was doing a lot of research and for nearly a year, it was taking Illustrator lessons online. Over the months, tasks involved writing emails, working on patterns, sketching, building a portfolio, contacting companies, making a phone call, etc etc. Some days I spent 15 minutes on my dream, other days I spent 8 or 9 hours working on it. Most days, I didn't know what I would be doing in two weeks, but one thing led to another and the answer always came in time for me to do the next thing.

After about 2 years, I signed my first contract to become a fabric designer. I cried and was filled with so much awe and joy! For the first time in my whole life, I had accomplished something HUGE. What I learned through this experience is that it's important to set BIG goals. You know, the ones that are scary, and may never come true. The next important thing is to not let it overwhelm you, but rather let it inspire your small steps. When you're on step 2 or 3, you won't know what step 8 or 9 (or 532) looks like, but you'll know just in time to make it happen.

Everything in life is possible if you're willing to put in the work. Dreams come true by way of knowledge. This means you'll have to read and research, google your brains out and learn a lot. But you can do that, right?!

Nourish your creativity

Most often, I wake up rearing to go and ready to attack my creative goals for the day. I love what I do, and it hardly ever feels like work. For that, I am so grateful! But for the days or hours that feel just BLAH, I have a list of things I can to do in order to nourish my creativity. I believe that it's incredibly important to take care of your creativity and nourish it every day.

1) Keep style files. When I'm feeling low on ideas and totally NOT creative - I refer to my style files. Sometimes this is a folder on my hard drive, or an actual paper folder of things that inspire , or sometimes a 'secret' board on Pinterest. However you prefer, tuck things away that you love to refer back to when you need help getting your creative juices flowing. Think magazine articles, photographs, color palettes and more!

2) Brighten your space. Working in natural daylight is an absolute MUST for me and my sanity. I've worked in dark places before, and they leave me feeling tired, burnt out and depressed. This is such a concern of mine, that the amount of natural day light was the number one thing I considered when designing our home. If it's dark where you work, consider taking your work outside or moving it closer to a window, and seeing if it makes you feel any differently.

3) Step away from the computer. 70% of all of my creative work has to be done while sitting in front of a computer. Sometimes, I just need to take a break! This is when I take a walk outside, or do something hands-on and creative in my home. Whatever revives you, do it!

4) Keep something pretty in sight. This is simple and maybe a little silly, but it WORKS. A pretty plant or simple vase of flowers does the trick for me. It could be a photograph, piece of artwork or notebook, as well.

5) Keep a clean work space. What's that saying, tidy desk = a tidy mind? Keep your work space organized and your brain will be soon to follow!

6) Personal hygiene. Haha, but seriously! I remember when I first started showering first thing in the morning and it made the biggest difference. If you work from home, it can be incredibly easy to catch yourself in the afternoon with your pajamas still on. Start getting fully ready in the morning and you'll feel empowered, professional and motivated to work. (Just to be clear: I'm not saying dress up, just be appropriate if your neighbor stops by!)

7) Stay energized. Some do it with coffee, others do it with green smoothies and plenty of sleep. Whatever it is, just remember that energy = creativity.

8) Take time off. Sometimes, I just need a day. If you're feeling overwhelmed and zapped, don't push it. Do some mundane tasks that don't require your creativity like answering emails or organizing your work station. If you can afford it, give yourself an entire day off and spend it doing something you love.

9) Work when you're motivated. Because a creativepreneur means I can work whenever I like (woop!). Creatives don't always feel motivated to work from 9 to 5, so work when you feel most motivated. For some, it will be late into the night, for others it may be very early in the morning. Tune in to your energy and put your most motivated time to good use.

Here's our motto: keep your creativity nourished and your work will flourish!


Enrollment opens soon! Surface Pattern Design Immersion is an 8-week Online training program for creatives who want to learn Adobe Illustrator, surface design and the business of how to become a licensing artist. It’s a completely comprehensive course, designed to give you a unique and immersive experience into the world of Surface Pattern Design. Because we all know, the best way to accomplish your BIG goals is to immerse yourself in the learning, the industry and in the community.

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Today we’re discussing a topic vital to any freelancer's success: getting your work noticed.

The first step in becoming a successful artist of any kind is to simply to get noticed. No biggie, right?! Someone once told me, you can be the most amazing artist in the world, but if you don't know how to market yourself, you'll never make a living at it. It stuck with me, and definitely helped me appreciate my degree in business much more.

So, here are my top tips on getting your work noticed in the industry!

Share your work. When it comes time to show off your work, a surprising amount of emotions can arise. It can feel intimidating and scary, but it’s also common to feel like you need to ’sit’ on your best work. Because, what if someone copies you? Or what if a company won’t license your work because it’s already ‘out there’? 

I personally believe it’s better to take the risk in order to simply get it out there. If you share your work, no one will know it exists! You can easily copyright your work before sharing it, so if someone copies it, contact a lawyer. If a company won’t license the pattern that’s already been shown, you can make some more. The key is to start building your brand and your signature style

Focus on showing off your signature style. Being consistent in your work, the style of your work and the way you present your work goes a long way. You’ll have a much better chance at landing your dream job when they can see your style through everything you share. It builds trust and let’s them know what they can expect by bringing you on as a designer.

Build your brand and following. In a booming field of designers, having ‘the whole package’ is becoming increasingly important. Try to have some professional bio pictures taken, have a personable about page, work on sharing great content that engages your audience and your following will continue to grow, grow, grow

Launch yourself! Announce your mission and go after it. Contact blogs and magazines in hopes of a mention, enter contests and continue to make new work to share on a consistent basis.

Courage: The last thing you must have is courage. This is going to be scary, overwhelming, nerve wracking. But if you can just find a few seconds of courage to introduce yourself, dial a number or show someone your work, your life could be changed forever. Mine was!

Easier said than done, right? Don’t forget that this stuff takes time. A lot of time! It took me 2 years just to learn Illustrator and have enough work that I was proud enough to share. Just think - every single successful person out there started at zero. Zero skills, zero knowledge, zero followers. It takes time to grow and a lot of effort to put yourself out there BUT in the end it can be so (so!) worth it. 

Tell me: where are you feeling stuck?


Enrollment opens soon! Surface Pattern Design Immersion is an 8-week Online training program for creatives who want to learn Adobe Illustrator, surface design and the business of how to become a licensing artist. It’s a completely comprehensive course, designed to give you a unique and immersive experience into the world of Surface Pattern Design. Because we all know, the best way to accomplish your BIG goals is to immerse yourself in the learning, the industry and in the community.

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February 2018 Calendar Collection by Bonnie Christine (2)  

Writing this post made me realize that I haven't blogged for an entire month. What?! I did however manage to roll out several new things - I launched a new website (you're looking at it!), announced all the details for the Surface Design Immersion Course, started adding prints to the new Print Shop, wrapped up a new fabric collection and even started a new one (something extra special!). I also announced the 2018 Syllabus for the Roost Tribe and even managed to take a few photography classes like this one and this one (I loved them both).

Whew! I suppose when I'm most busy, my blog and social accounts don't get updated as much. But if you're interested, the best way to stay up to date is to join the mailing list.

Here's a fun little lambscape for your calendars!

↠ Click to download the digital desktop background 

↠ Click to download the digital smartphone background

↠ Click to download the printable PDF Desk Version

↠ Click to download all of the above as a .ZIP file

This month's calendar was inspired by my new fabric collection, Lambkin for Art Gallery Fabrics!

Just a little glimpse at my desk. If you'd like to follow along with all the fun, I would love to meet you over on Instagram!

Please note: all images, patterns and designs are © Bonnie Christine | Going Home to Roost. You may not reproduce, re-create or sell in any way, but please feel free to download for your own personal use. If you share on your own blog (I'd be delighted!) please direct your readers to this post to download the file. Thank you!  

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Ah, a new year and a fresh start! I have so many great memories from 2017 and plan to make this year my best yet. But before I get into spilling all of my news and plans for the upcoming year, lest's start with a fresh desktop calendar. Shall we? :)

↠ Click to download the digital desktop background 

↠ Click to download the digital smartphone background

↠ Click to download the printable PDF Desk Version

↠ Click to download all of the above as a .ZIP file

This month's calendar was inspired by my new fabric collection, Lambkin for Art Gallery Fabrics!

Just a little glimpse at my desk. If you'd like to follow along with all the fun, I would love to meet you over on Instagram!

Please note: all images, patterns and designs are © Bonnie Christine | Going Home to Roost. You may not reproduce, re-create or sell in any way, but please feel free to download for your own personal use. If you share on your own blog (I'd be delighted!) please direct your readers to this post to download the file. Thank you!  

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Delighted by Joybird

Over the past year, I've had the absolute honor of working with Joybird, a modern furniture company based in California. I've known for years that when I built our 'forever home', I wanted to include a few of their handcrafted pieces. When the time came, I had my sights set on the Serena and Welles Sofa, both of which would give our family a practical yet sophisticated living room. I loved being able to choose the fabric and the wood stains - it made the whole experience so personal!

When Joybird asked if they could visit my home and film our story, I was beyond excited. Of course, YES! The most wonderful film crew arrived to my tiny town across the country and set up to listen to my story and film our family. I'm honored to be included in their story and was so delighted by the entire experience.

The video just released this week and it's something we will surely cherish for the rest of our lives.

To see more and read the story, visit Joybird here.

All photos and video by Joybird.

Joybird + Bonnie Christine (2)

Joybird + Bonnie Christine (3)

Joybird + Bonnie Christine (4)

bonniechristine-628-edit.jpg

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