a few outdoor updates at our home!

| handmade

outdoor updates at our mountain home

spring always inspires me to work outside and get our outdoor spaces functioning well for the summer months. since we moved into our mountain home nearly 2 years ago, we’ve done a lot, both inside and out! i hope to share more images of the inside soon, but today i want to share with you a few pictures of our outdoor spaces (+ brag on my hubs a little!).

installing a square foot garden

building a square foot garden

one of our first priorities was to start a small garden. we also join our local CSA farm each year, so though we don’t need to grow much, i enjoy planting our favorite vegetables and watching them grow. of course bear loves it, too! so, david built us two 8×4 square foot gardens. he had to dig into the banks to give them a level ground, but after that was finished they went together quickly. we stained the outside of the boards to keep them from weathering, lined them weed cloth and filled them with a mixture of organic soil, compost and peat moss. i keep lettuce, kale and herbs in one and a mixture of flowers in the other. i love having a square foot garden – it makes keeping up the garden so simple and really helps cut down on weeds!

adding plants

diy antler hose rack

we’ve also painted the entire house (it used to be a lovely dirt-yellow color), and added a few plants to the front side of the house. there’s a lot more we’d like to do, like maybe paint the cement blocks and landscape a little more, but i’m so happy with how everything is coming together.

adorning a simple screened door

adding this diy mint screen door has made the entire home feel reminiscent of my child hood. i love hearing it slam behind me as i walk in the door (just me?).

diy antler hose rack

and of course, our DIY antler hose rack! it’s been here for a little over a year and i’m happy to say it still works and looks great.

what spring projects have you been working on?

explore the cultivate lookbook!

| bonnie christine design

explore the cultivate lookbook by bonnie christine (2)

hi everyone! i’m back from all our travels and eager to catch up with you! art gallery fabrics debuted the lookbook for my new fabric line, cultivate, last week and i’ve been enjoying its pages ever since. i want to take just a few minutes to share it with you today!

  explore the cultivate lookbook by bonnie christine (3)

explore the cultivate lookbook by bonnie christine (4)

cultivate was inspired by my love for gardening. it’s as pure and simple as digging in the dirt! growing vegetables and cutting fresh flowers from the garden is one of my most favorite pleasures in life. there’s something so special about preparing a meal with food you’ve grown yourself, and arranging a bouquet of flowers fresh from the yard. don’t you think?

it’s about the romance of reaping the harvest through and through. it’s filled with floral motifs, garden patches, roots and seeds.

the best way to view cultivate is by hopping right in to the fabric lookbook. i hope you enjoy browsing our projects! you can also check out this post for more about my inspirations and a few of my all-time favorite prints.

explore the cultivate lookbook by bonnie christine (5)

explore the cultivate lookbook by bonnie christine (6)

explore the cultivate lookbook by bonnie christine (7)

  explore the cultivate lookbook by bonnie christine (9)

explore the cultivate lookbook by bonnie christine (10)  explore the cultivate lookbook by bonnie christine (11)

looking to purchase? see if your nearest independent quilt or fabric shop is currently stocked with cultivate, shop online from my mom’s quilt shop – a stitch in time, or view a full list of online shops here.

want to see more projects? view my booth at quilt market and check out everyone’s projects on instragram (use #CultivateFabric)

cultivate by bonnie christine (1)psst! art gallery fabrics has a new app! you can now view all the collections, shop online and find a store near you right from your device. download it (apple or android) and read more about it here (and you must watch this adorable video)!

Join me for Design, Print & Build your Portfolio on CreativeLive!

| bonnie christine design

hi everyone! as i’ve mentioned before, i’m teaching a course on how to  design, print and build your portfolio for creativelive tomorrow (wednesday, june 3rd, 2015). wahoo!!

teaching another course for creativelive is truly a dream come true (you can read about my first experience here). we arrived in san francisco last night and i’m off to attend my pre-show meetings today. we’ll be rolling LIVE tomorrow morning (ee!).

are you familiar with creativelive? if not, get ready to fall in love! every single day, creativelive broadcasts the world’s greatest creative experts directly to you, live and free. with workshops featuring photography, video, design, business, audio, music, and software training there’s something for everyone! anyone can watch online — for free — and interact with instructors in real time. or, if you would prefer to have on demand access anytime, you can purchase the course as well. now, instead of turning on the morning news, i tune into creativelive in the morning to get inspired and nourish my creative spirit!

behind the scenes of building my handmade portfolio

i’m really excited to share this course with you, because it has a little something for everyone in it. it’s also NOT just for surface pattern designers! photographers, illustrators, painters, artists, writers and creatives of all kinds will learn how to present their work.

here’s what you’ll learn:

– why having a portfolio is essential for your creative career
– what to include in your book and how to make it a reflection of your brand and work
– how to design (and print) the pages of your portfolio in adobe illustrator
– how to build your very own handmade portfolio
– tips on getting in touch with your target people and advice on shipping your book

i’ll also be sharing with you several examples of portfolios from creatives of all kinds! you’ll leave the course feeling inspired, motivated and prepared to hit the ground running with your beautiful portfolio. we’re going to have so much fun!

course details:

what: Design, Print & Build your Portfolio
when: July 3rd 2015 from 9am – 3pm PST (12pm – 6pm EST)
cost: the course is FREE if you watch it live, and available for purchase for on demand access anytime for $39. click here for details.
RSVP here to get lots of course extras!

see you there! (and back here on monday!) xo, bonnie

Choosing our Non-Toxic Mattress

| simple living

Savvy Rest Non-Toxic Mattress (2)

david and i have been in the market for a new mattress for nearly a year. we’ve slept on the same one for over 10 years, and though it was still comfy, we knew we wanted something more. with a growing family and lots of extra little people in our bed, we wanted to make two changes: 1) move to a king size mattress and 2) make sure it was chemical-free and organic. if you know us well, you know we research everything before we make a purchase. especially when it comes to health, safety and the environment! i knew this one was going to be a biggie. with so many mattresses to choose from and so many materials to sort through, the research phase took a quite a while.

Our chemical free mattress from savvy rest

Our savvy rest chemical free mattress

let’s first start with why we were sure we wanted a non-toxic mattress. in one word: CHEMICALS.

the amount of harmful chemicals used in commercial mattresses is astonishing. flame retardants such as PBDEs, boric acid and antimony are highly toxic, and now a dangerous new flame retardant, called FireMaster 100, has been introduced (since the ban of PBDEs in 2004). mattresses are also usually sprayed with potent insecticides, especially if they boast “treated for dust mites”.

many of these very common mattress chemicals have long-term effects, particularly on the developing brains of children. since we co-sleep with our littles, this has of course been my #1 concern! endocrine-disrupting chemicals have been linked to autism, ADHD, lower IQs and more. avoiding these chemicals is also critical during pregnancy, so making the switch quickly was also important to us (baby #2 will be here in september!). 

enough said? we figured that since we spend over 1/3 of our life in our beds, that investing in a safe and healthy place to rest would be totally worth it.

after lots and lots of research, we decided we wanted to purchase a natural latex mattress. natural latex is pure, incredibly durable (20 years +!), comfortable and sustainable.

Natural Dunlop and Talalay latex in Savvy Rest's organic mattress

the company we fell in love with was savvy rest. the natural dunlop and talalay latex they use for their mattresses was exactly what we were looking for.

we instantly fell in love.

i’m not sure i can even express to you the comfort level of this mattress! layers of natural latex wrapped in an organic cotton casing pretty much had us at ‘hello’.

after speaking directly with savvy rest, we decided that this was absolutely the mattress for us. they helped us choose and customize each side of the bed for our individual needs and took us step by step through the mattress choosing process. we have always liked sleeping on the softest of mattresses available, so we went with one of the softest setups they offer (i chose medium dunlop, soft dunlop and soft talalay on top for me and since david is heavier, we chose firm dunlop, soft dunlop and soft talalay on top for him). each side is constructed of three layers of latex, so they are incredibly easy to customize!

dunlop and talalay – how do you choose? both are natural latex, but have been manufactured differently. basically, dunlop is denser, which makes it a bit firmer overall and talalay gives you that pillowy-soft feel. dunlop is also a little less expensive, so we chose to use that on the bottom two layers, and top them off with a pillowy soft layer of talalay. you can refer to savvy rest’s support for how to choose the setup that’s right for you.

Savvy Rest Non-Toxic Mattress

after the decision was made and our layers were chosen, we placed our order and waited patiently. soon, 3 large boxes labeled  ‘savvy rest’ arrived at our door and we felt like a couple of small children on christmas morning. moving up in size to a king mattress, also meant we had to purchase a new bed frame, so we hurried to assemble it and unbox our new mattress.

assembly of our new savvy rest mattress was fast and easy (i wish i could say the same for our new bed frame. whew!). each layer of latex was clearly labeled and was easy to unroll. the layers rest inside an organic cotton casing, so that went down first. we then spread out the 3 layers of latex in the proper order and zipped up the casing. i think it only took 15 or 20 minutes to set up!

i’ll never forget the moment we first laid down on our new mattress. we sunk into the pillowy top and felt as though it was giving us a big welcoming hug back. bear collapsed on a pillow in the middle and we all snuggled in to enjoy the moment.

we’ve been sleeping on our new savvy rest mattress for nearly two weeks, and i’m happy to report that we are absolutely in love! each morning we wake up feeling rested and rejuvenated. we’ve had zero aches or pains. the only problem so far – is that we don’t want to get out of bed!

pillows on our organic mattress

upgrading our mattress also finally gave me the extra ‘oomph’ i needed to finish several projects in our bedroom. after being in our home for nearly two years now, i’m so happy to feel like this room is finally finished – and it actually resembles a bedroom! just in case you spied something you’re curious about, i thought i’d also list some resources that really helped bring the room together.

mattress: savvy rest serenity (king) with 2 layers of dunlop and a top layer of talalay latex
sheets: threshold organic sheets in ivory
comforter: puregrow wool organic comforter by earthsake
bed frame: malm
headboard: mandal
curtains: handmade using timberland trunk in voile
artwork: ursa minor
pillows: sanela covers, handmade linen covers
lights: jansjo
hanging planters: skurar
chair, mirror and planter: thrifted
tree: fiddle leaf fig

if you’re in the market for a new mattress, i encourage you to do your own research and make the decision that’s right for you and your family. we are so happy we invested in a chemical-free mattress that will last us decades and supply health and wellness to our family for years to come!

thrifted chair in our bedroom

June’s Desktop + Smartphone Calendars

| free downloads

June's Desktop + Smartphone Calendars (3)

may is winding down and june is just around the corner! this month has been incredibly busy but very fun (see a little recap below!). june is packed full of adventures as well. i’ll be heading to san francisco next week to teach my next course for creativelive, celebrating david’s birthday the weekend after and focusing on several design projects throughout the rest of the month. my favorite things about june are the beginnings of summer vegetables, juicy watermelon and loads of sunshine! what will june bring for you?

to download june’s backgrounds: click on the image above to download the .zip file with both calendars inside – or – click here to download the desktop background and here to download the smartphone background. enjoy!

a little recap of our month!

June's Desktop + Smartphone Calendars (2)

to download the printable version: click on the image above to download the PDF calendar. print on heavy card stock (my favorite is epson premium presentation paper). punch a whole at the top to hang or simply stack.

please note: all images, patterns and designs © 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!

may’s roost tribe recap

| roost tribe

the roost tribe: create | learn | inspire (1)

may is winding down and june is almost here! today i’m sharing with you this month’s recap of the roost tribe, which gives you a sneak peek of what roost tribe members received last month. if you’re interested in receiving it, you still can. i’ll be sending out a recap on tuesday, to members with all of the content in it from last month so no one will have missed anything, regardless of when you might have joined during the month.

that means, that if you join before tuesday, you’ll still get all of mays’s content + june’s content as well- that’s two months for the price of one!

the roost tribe: create | learn | inspire (5)
12 WEEK SERIES: 12 things that make my business thrive: part 8: sell with no ceiling, part 9: gain an online following, part 10: share one thing, part 11: master the art of working from home.

over the course of 12 weeks, i’m sharing the top 12 approaches i’ve taken to my business that have helped it thrive. some are hard fact business based, and some are inspirational, but they all have one thing in common: they have worked for me and have had a tremendous impact on my success and happiness as a creative.

the roost tribe: create | learn | inspire (1)

inspiration set tech backgrounds.

the roost tribe: create | learn | inspire (2)

printable seed packets.

the roost tribe: create | learn | inspire (3)

recipe for delicious vegan salted crackers.

growing garden pattern collection.

plus more! being a member is tons of fun and we would love to have you join the family!

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five things you can do before building your portfolio

| handmade
The Top Five Things to Do to get Your Portfolio Organized (3)
hey everyone! as you probably already know, i’m teaching a course on how to  design, print and build your portfolio for creativelive next week (june 3rd). i’m so excited, i can hardly stand it! this course is specifcally on portfolio building, but students will also learn how to bind their own book and pick up a few new illustrator tricks along the way as well.
for me, presenting a finished body of work in a well thought-out portfolio was an essential part of moving my career forward as a creative. i believe that whether you’re an artist, a photographer, illustrator, painter, writer or surface pattern designer (like me!) – making a handmade portfolio that is a true reflection of yourself and your work will help advance your career.
if you’re planning on taking the course (it’s free to watch live!), i first wanted to cover just a few things you can do in order to prepare. see below!
The Top Five Things to Do to get Your Portfolio Organized (1)

five things you can do before building your portfolio:

1) finish a body of work. this one is easier said than done! possibly the most useful part of preparing for a portfolio is the motivation it brings to complete a body of work that you’re ready to share. it can be easy to have several half-way completed projects or collections, unfinished ideas and untitled documents floating around. when you decide to build a portfolio, you’ll gain the motivation you need to complete all those projects and package them nicely.
2) gather materials & decide on a method. the next step should include gathering the materials you’ll need to actually make your book. feel free to take some time to research the different kinds of books you can make and decide on one that fits your work best. (some of my favorites include the drum leaf method, screw and post method and the coptic stitch method.) *i’ll be sharing detailed information on all the materials you need for the screw and post method during class!
3) decide on what to include. another important step is to decide on what exactly you’d like to include in your portfolio. some people may prefer a simple portfolio that only includes actual artwork or photographs. more complex portfolios could include a table of contents, several collections, an about page, contact page, product mock ups, and more.
4) have an end viewer in mind. do you know who will be seeing your book? this could be an art director, professor, agent, publisher or mixture of them all. keeping them in mind as your design your book will give you focus and clarity on what or what not to include. i suggest making a list of companies or individuals you hope to share your work with, which will help give you guidance (and motivation!).
5) gather inspiration for you book. when it comes to building your own book, the possibilities are endless! you can begin gathering ideas by looking at other handmade books, inspiration boards and collections. you could fill your pages with printed images, painted pages, actual sketches or illustrations, found bits of inspirations and more. think ‘sophisticated scrapbooking’ and let your imagination run free!
of course, i’ll be sharing with you my own portfolio and how it’s helped me get to where i am today during class. i’ll also show you how to design your own pages (using adobe illustrator), discuss printing options and learn how to actually build and bind a handmade book. we’ll cover how to make your portfolio align with your brand and truly reflect your work as an artist and how best to stand out from the crowd, too.
you can RSVP for the class here – i hope you’ll join us!

psst. want to join us LIVE in san francisco on june 3rd as a student in the audience? there are only a few spots left. you can apply here!

a favorite find: ePantry

| eco friendly finds

a favorite find: epantry

i’ve shared my love for ePantry before, and i’m happy to report that after using them for a year, i’m still in love! every month we receive a big bundle of sustainable household goods that we’ve hand selected for our family. i’ve been able to keep a well stocked cleaning cabinet and try a few new things for over a year now!

so what is ePantry? it’s an earth friendly service that makes purchasing eco household products super convenient. in just three minutes, they create a customized, yet highly flexible, schedule for all your household products — with speedy delivery to your door for cheaper than the grocery store (or even amazon. seriously!). based on your household needs, ePantry recommends the right amount of sustainable household products to keep you from ever running low.

with babies around, using earth friendly & safe household cleaners has been more important to us now more than ever. i’m pleased to say that i haven’t had a toxic cleaner in my home for several years now, and ePantry has been a huge part in making that possible (and easy!).

ePantry’s website is easy to use and fun to engage with, and the employees are always a pleasure to work with! they also recently became a B Corp (hooray!) and donate to save 25 square feet of rain forest for every order shipped (and they’re doubling that to 50 square feet through may 31st!).


the most exciting news? this week, ePantry has offered everyone who places an order by may 31st a $10 gift card and a 70 hour grove organic soy candle ($12.95 value) in their first purchase! i’ve been burning a grove candle this week myself, and they smell so delicious (i know you’ll love it!). just click here to visit ePantry and start picking out you eco-goodies today!