Roseville teen designs with a message

Creates T-shirt line to benefit church youth group
By: Sena Christian, The Press Tribune
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Someday, local fashion designer Dakota Bonnar wants her own clothing line and boutique.

In the meantime, she's designing clothes for other stores with a focus on T-shirts. Her latest creations feature a positive message on shirts sold at S.W.A.K. at The Fountains in Roseville, where she also works as a sales associate.

The embellished shirts include the words "God is love," which Bonnar says was inspired by the religious "I am Second" campaign.

"It's about how to get famous, but not alone, how people are better with God's love," Bonnar, 17, says.

Bonnar became a Christian in January 2011 after going through a difficult time in life. She attends Ark of Salvation, "a diamond in the rough" in North Highlands, and will use proceeds from the sales of her T-shirts to build the church's youth group. She hopes to raise about $450.

"I've had a change from having God's love in my life," Bonnar says. "I'd never go back. It was a struggle to get there and I just want to pass it on."

Her friend and fellow churchgoer Vita Khona, 21, says Bonnar has been a great addition to the church - plus, she always comes in wearing a different outfit.

"She came (to our church) and has been a blessing ever since," Khona says. "(Designing the shirts) was all her own idea. It's so great that she's giving back to the community."

Her "God is love" line isn't the first time Bonnar designed for a cause. She previously created T-shirts for S.W.A.K. that sold out in three weeks, with proceeds benefitting St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.

The budding designer graduated from Roseville High School in the spring and currently attends Sierra College. She plans to eventually transfer to William Jessup University in Rocklin and major in business, so she can move closer to achieving her career dreams.

Sena Christian can be reached Follow her on Twitter at SenaC_RsvPT.