diy coupon notebook

DIY Coupon Notebook

I have mentioned a few times that I have been completely sucked into this whole coupon thing. While I don’t have a stock pile that takes over the whole house or cut coupons and plan shopping trips for 300 hours a week, I am working hard to find deals and save the family money. I started how I did ever other time, bought a paper and had one accordian style organizer. Then the next week I realized that you really need to buy more than one paper and print more than one coupon to take advantage of the great deals. 
I buy four newspapers most weeks when the coupons are good enough to warrant the purchase (i.e. offer me WAY more than the 8$ I spent on them in savings). 
Because of that, the accordion thing got really obnoxious really quick. Also, definitely was NOT conducive to grocery shopping with a toddler. I can’t tell you how many times Avery had grabbed a handful of coupons while I was shuffling through the HUGE stack looking for the one I needed in each section. 
Shopping took forever. 
Then I made this:
 
Oh. my. gosh. It made the whoooooooole process so much easier!! It is organized, I can flip through quickly while walking down the aisle and can see everything at a glance!
Click “Read More” to find out my tips, tricks and how I made my binder…hint, I spent no money out of pocket!

First, I chose a binder, I have a bunch of these left over from preschool portfolios one year so I just grabbed that. It is only an inch and I may grow out of it soon but it is perfect for now, as I am still a beginner couponer. You could use any 3 ring binder.
Then came the pages, I have seen that most people use the baseball card organizers. I can imagine they are easy and work great, but I haven’t had the time to go look for them and I didn’t want to spend any extra money if I didn’t have to. So, I came up with an idea that I would like to think, was a little bit of genius!!
I took plastic pages, which I have a ton of, and sewed seams into them with my sewing machine. Right?! I made different versions to fit my needs, a 6 count one to fit the long and skinny printable ones and a 9 count one to fit most smaller, newspaper coupons. I sew what I need, when I need it and while it isn’t as quick as buying them, it is way cheaper and doesn’t take too much time. 
Next was the dividers; I briefly mentioned these in my 10 New Uses Tuesday post earlier this week that I used paint chips.
First, I picked my colors and trimmed them down. 
 
Next, I folded them in half and wrote the names of my sections on them.
 
 Then I got out a piece of packing tap and put the folded label to one side with the fold towards the middle. 
Then fold over the other side of the tape and attach it to the edge of the plastic page. 
When you attach them all you get this colorful little rainbow =).
My last tip is that I add an empty page in the very front of the binder, this is where I put the coupons as I have added the items to my basket. This way when I get to the check out, they are all in one spot and I just need to stack them up and hand them to the cashier. 

Happy couponing!! I would LOVE to hear any and all of your tips!!

4 Responses to DIY Coupon Notebook

  1. Kara @ Mine for the Making May 7, 2011 at 5:15 am #

    Im totally doing the couponing thing this summer and I am SO using this idea!! LOVE the organization of it! Sharing on my facebook of course :)

  2. Sarah May 7, 2011 at 11:23 pm #

    I’m a major couponer! I’ve been doing it for about a year and a half and it’s amazing how much money you can save!

    I used to use the binder for organization, but it took so much time to cut everything out and then keep my binder current. I use folders now & file them by the date and type of coupon (ie. 5/1 SS). This really helps when you use the blogs that do the match-ups for you. I have a blog post that is in progress that I was doing to explain what I do…watch for it next week :)

  3. Josh and Melinda May 8, 2011 at 6:47 pm #

    It’s probably not a huge help with someone with so many coupons, but when I get ones that I KNOW I will use, I write down on my daytimer when they expire, so I know to get my butt to the store to use them.