I follow Going Home To Roost on Instagram because I love fabric and especially Art Gallery Fabrics, for whom Bonnie Christine is a designer.  When I saw her post on Instagram that she was going to be teaching a Creative Live class on surface pattern design in August, I decided I needed to attend.  I signed up right away and took the 3 days off of work when the course was taking place.  Some people say that they watch and/or listen to courses while at work, but I wanted to really focus and try to learn something from the class, not just have it as background noise to my SAS coding at work.  And, as it turns out, I did learned a lot of things actually.  I think it was time well spent.

Prior to taking the Creative Live course, I had completed a few Illustrator  courses on, so I had a base knowledge about the program which made it easy to follow along.  I wouldn’t say that this course is for a complete beginner, but also not for someone who uses Illustrator regularly.  It was just right for me!

I think the most helpful part of the class for me was about using the Live Trace function on photographs.  I am always taking pictures of things that look interesting to me or pretty flowers for inspiration.  And I have tried to Live Trace some of them, but always give up and end up using the pen tool to create an outline instead.  Bonnie went over some of the options that are available with this tool and I think I’ll have better success with it next time I try using it.

The goal for the class was to create a mini collection.  I started working on that but I haven’t finished it yet.  My inspiration was based on my last post about my daughter’s Rainbow Day at her school.  I have a lot of sketches and illustrator files that I have begun working on, but I only finished one design.  Here it is.  And I am still having an issue with the a line that shows up in the repeat, but I think I can fix that by rechecking all the X and Y axis points of the objects.


However, I did finish several things for my daughter’s birthday party this weekend.  I made the invitation myself.  Obviously I changed the address, email and phone number.



I also made some banners to print out and decorate the house with.  I made them so that two will fit on an 8.5 X 11 sheet of paper and I then I can print them out on card stock paper that you can get from any craft store.  I’ll punch holes in the corners and string them on twine so that I can hang them around the house and outside.


Here is a closer view of one printable sheet.


I am certain that without taking Bonnie’s Design Surface Patterns From Scratch class, I would not have been able to finish the birthday party decorations and definitely not as quickly as I did.  She went over a lot of short cuts that made me feel a lot more comfortable using the program.

You can follow along the blog hop and see what other attendees thought about the class and the work they have made since by visiting the blog hop’s webpage on Going Home To Roost:

Or you can visit these sites that wrote blog posts this week:

Tuesday October 7th
emily leggett |
Twitter: or @studioemdesigns
Instagram: @studio_em_interiors

Thursday October 9th
Nerissa Alford |
instagram: nerissaalford

Friday October 10th
heidi ahmed |

Monday October 13th
Allison Sews |
instagram: allisonsews
flickr: allison sews

I purchased the course so that I could go back and watch it for reference and I can say that have done that, so money well spent.  You can purchase it too here:

I also signed up for the Roost Tribe, which I would describe as a surface pattern design community that Bonnie hosts.  Go check it out, its pretty cool.  It’s only $5 per month, but you can get the first month free here:

roost tribe 2



Happy designing!