Avant Garden – NC Demos January Blog Hop

Welcome to the January North Carolina Demos blog hop!  I hope you enjoyed Sharon Maranich’s posting.  She is such a talented stamper!  Thanks for stopping by to see my project for this month’s blog hop.  I hope I can inspire you with a card made using the Avant Garden stamp set from the Sale-a-Bration catalog.

My blog is dedicated to frugal stampaholics.  The Stamped Greetings motto is – One stamp set, Three designs, Endless possibilities.  This week, I have focused on the Avant Garden stamp set.  If you missed the first two designs, you can click here to see the first design and click here to see the second design.  Today’s posting is the third design using this set.  It was inspired by one of the pictures in the Sale-a-Bration catalog.  After all, CASEing is a great way to get comfortable with new stamps, inks, and embellishments.  I always like to add a little personal twist to make the design my own.

Here is the picture of the card in the catalog.

Here is my take on a card using the same basic layout.


I would be flattered if you CASE my design and hope that you do!  You may want to take the following tips into consideration when you do:

  • The most challenging part of this card is getting the many layers on the card front to line-up and look flush with the card edges.  Patience, tape, and a ruler are the tricks that I used.  After I stamped the flowers and leaves (all on one piece of Peekaboo Peach card stock), I cut the stamped piece at a diagonal.  The sentiment was stamped onto a separate piece of scrap Pumpkin Pie card stock.  Additional pieces of scrap Peekaboo Peach and Emerald Envy card stock were taped and then glued to add the border colors between the stamped flower pieces and the stamped sentiment.  Tape is a real life saver to make sure you have the border colors just where you want them before gluing them down.
  • The base for the card is a Crumb Cake note card.  I love the note cards and matching envelopes.  They are the perfect size for a quick card and perfect for this type of design.
  • The burlap ribbon and linen thread add a very earthly, yet elegant, finish to the design.
  • There were a few alterations to the design that happened and the card was created.  I have really just accepted that I need to allow myself to experiment when making cards.  This card didn’t turn out exactly how I had envisioned it.  And, to be completely honest, it actually turned out better than I had originally planned.  Allow yourself to take the journey of creativity.  You’ll be amazed at the results of stamps, ink, embellishments, and a dash of trying something outside your comfort zone!

Be sure to continue the blog hop for this month.  All the participants are listed below.

Tamra Davis

Jo Anne Hewins

Michelle Irinyl

Tracie Evans Langley

Sharon Maranich

Laurie Meier <– YOU ARE HERE





Key products that I used to create my card are shown below.  If you click on any picture, you’ll go to my on-line store.

Happy stamping!

Avant Garden – Sparkling Birthday Card

If you don’t have the Avant Garden stamp set yet, I strongly recommend that you put it on the top of your list.  It is one of the Sale-a-Bration stamp sets that are available for free when you have a purchase of $50.  Trust me – You will love this set!  It has helped me live up to the Stamped Greetings theme – One stamp set, Three designs, Endless possibilities.

Earlier this week, I posted an Avant Garden card that you can see here.  I had such a great time using the Avant Garden stamps and the Watercolor pencils that I decided to make some modifications to the initial design.  Below is a picture of the second card using this stamp set.  I hope you’ll agree that it really sparkles!

The changes that I made to my original card include:

  • Stamping on Designer Series Paper (DSP) and then coloring – What a fun way to add a great background to your colored image!  The colors in the DSP work incredibly well with the colors used for the flowers.  The Watercolor Pencils are currently not able to be ordered.  They have been incredibly popular.  I’ll keep you updated about their availability.  Hopefully – they will be available again in February.  In the meantime, use your choice of ink colors and the blender pens to color your flowers.  The results are also gorgeous!
  • Falling Petals Textured Touch – I love embossing folders.  They are incredibly easy and quick to use and add a wonderful lift to a card.  Check out the new Falling Petals Textured Embossing Folder from the Occasions catalog.
  • Sparkle from Wink of Stella – Look closely at the black ovals.  They have a wonderful layer of clear Wink of Stella!  The silver Wink of Stella pen was used to add some random sparkle to the front of the card.  The random dots were made using by flicking the pen onto the card.
  • Stitched Shapes Framelits Dies add a unique touch – The “Happy Birthday Wishes” sentiments are add a finish to the inside of the card.  The Stitched Shapes Framelits dies were used to cut and frame the oval on the front of the card!


  • Casual Elegance of Pearls – I hope you agree that the pearls add the perfect finishing touch.  Remember – Use an odd number of pearls (or other embellishments like sequins) on pieces of your work to add visual interest.

The most important thing that I “added” to this card was experimenting!  I recently watched a video and was inspired by three very well known stampers who gave the advice of jumping in and trying something new with paper and ink.  You’re not always going to love (or even like) the results – but, you’ll be very pleasantly surprised when a card turns out even better than you had hoped.  That is exactly what happened when I started to work through the design of this card.

Check back tomorrow to see the third design with the Avant Garden stamp set.  Remember – One stamp set, Three designs, Endless possibilities.

Happy stamping!



Below are the key products that I used to create the Avant Garden card in this post.  Click on any picture, and you’ll go to my on-line store.

Blender Pens


Avant Garden and Watercolor Pencils – What a great pair!

The Avant Garden stamp set is absolutely amazing!  And, maybe even more amazing – you can get the Avant Garden stamp set free during Sale-a-Bration when you place a $50 order!  Below is the first of three designs that I will share with you using this set. Click on the picture to get a better view of the detail.  Remember my motto:  One stamp set – Three designs – Endless possibilities.

There are a few keys to this card:

  • The new Watercolor Pencils from Stampin’ Up!  Take a close look at the great color and blending on the flowers.  I used the Watercolor Pencils (#4 Daffodil Delight, #5 Old Olive, #8 Rich Razzleberry, and # 9 Melon Mambo} to color the flowers, stem, and leaves.  Then, I used a Blender Pen to easily blend the colors together.  The result is gorgeous!  Click on the photo below to see the wonderful detail in the petals.

  • Designer Series Paper for a quick, interesting background.  I used the Fruit Stand DSP for this card.  There are wonderful gradients of color in the paper that add an easy Wow! factor.
  • Stitched Shapes Framelits Dies.  They’re back!!!  Four sizes of ovals, circles, and squares with a beautiful stitching finish – what more is there to say?  You really need to add these to your collection.
  • Basic Black Cardstock Border.  The black cardstock piece under the DSP is cut to allow 1/16″ border on each side.  It adds a clean and classic feel to the card.  The Basic Black oval is a nice backdrop for the flowers.  It was also cut with the Stitched Shapes Framelits dies.
  • Subtle Background for the Flowers.  There is a background dot stamp in the Avant Garden stamp set.  I used Daffodil Delight and Blushing Bride ink to create the background.
  • Smoky Slate Ink on the Sentiment.  The “Happy Birthday Wishes” sentiment was stamped with Flirty Flamingo ink.  To give a little depth to the words, I used Smoky Slate ink and stamped the sentiment over the Flirty Flamingo.  If you try this technique, stamp off the Smoky Slate before stamping.  The layering of ink colors really adds dimension.

I have the second design using the Avant Garden stamp set under way.  Check back to see the second card featuring this amazing set.  Remember:  One stamp set – Three designs – Endless possibilities!

The supplies I used for this project are shown below.  Click on any picture, and you’ll go to my on-line store.

Happy stamping!

Blender Pens



Sale-a-Bration – Avant Garden Stamp Set

Sale-a-Bration is one of my absolutely favorite times of the year.  And, if you haven’t looked at this year’s Sale-a-Bration catalog you definitely need to get a beverage of your choice, get comfortable, and take a look.

For every $50 order Stampin’ Up! order that you place through March 31, you can choose one item free from the Sale-a-Bration catalog.  One of my favorite free items is the gorgeous Avant Garden stamp set.  Take a look below at some fantastic samples using this set.  Over the next week, I’ll be sharing three additional designs using this set.

If you don’t have a demonstrator and need any of the current Stampin’ Up! catalogs, please leave a comment and let me know!

Happy stamping!

Product List

Window Shopping – Birthday Candle Card

We all love cards that are quick to make and have that Wow! factor.  The Window Shopping bundle from the new Occasions Catalog will help you create many cards that fit the bill.

Today, I would like to share a very fun birthday card that features the birthday candle die from the Window Box Thinlits Dies.  For those of you in the stamp club, this is another sneak peek of the techniques that we’ll use at Saturday’s meeting!



















This is the type of card that can easily be changed to be appropriate for anyone’s birthday.  Change the colors and the embellishments, and you’ll have a very different look!

Here are a few tips and tricks –

  • The “Happy Birthday” stamp in the Window Shopping stamp set is a perfect design to ink with markers.  In the picture, I used Dapper Denim on the top of the letters and Emerald Envy on the bottom of the letters.  After inking with your markers, give a good huff onto the letters before stamping on your card front.
  • Use your gold Wink of Stella to add some fun sparkles to your card.  Simply hold the Wink of Stella horizontally over your card and tap the barrel.  You’ll get great, random spots on your card.
  • Grab your scraps stash and figure out the best combinations to use behind the birthday candles cut out.  I’ve chosen to use Crushed Curry for the flames of the candles.  The candles are colored with Dapper Denim and Emerald Envy.  DSP can add a really fun touch also to the candle colors.  Experiment – you’ll find some great combinations!
  • This card was designed as a note card.  You can easily change accommodate the design to work as a typical A2 side card.

Listed below are the products that I used to make this card.  If you click on any picture, you’ll go to my on-line store.  I hope you are inspired by this card and use it to make a stash of your own birthday cards.  I would love to see your creations!

Happy stamping!