Wednesday, February 07, 2007

The coupon lady strikes again!


When I first learned how to coupon and bargain shop, I was overwhelmed with the vast quantity of coupons that I accumulated over just a few short weeks, just by getting one Sunday paper. Someone gave me the idea of using a binder to sort coupons into categories, and that kind of organization is EXACTLY my cup of tea. :)

Here is a picture of the binder I purchased at Walmart (yes, Walmart...and I'm proud to say that I haven't been there since! Doesn't that place give you a headache?)



Inside I have a pair of Lydia's scissors (yikes, I need to give those back to her!) for clipping coupons, my handy calculator, and all my dividers and pages of coupons.


I have divided the coupons into these categories:
  • Laundry
  • Cleaning Products
  • Toothpaste
  • Toiletries
  • Paper Products
  • Household
  • Baby Items
  • Medicine
  • Freezer
  • Baking Needs
  • Grains
  • Meat
  • Canned
  • Breakfast
  • Dairy Aisle
  • Snacks


Behind each divider, I placed a coupon clear plastic trading card protector sheets to house the coupons. This allows me to see what coupons I have as I am shopping.


That works for me! So now it's your turn. How do you organize your coupons?

46 comments:

Nikki said...

This is an organizer's dream post! Thank you for sharing this. You have done a beautiful job!

Nikki ALL OUT Valentine's Day

Larae said...

Ohh I LOVE it! I thought I was organized! That's amazing, I would have never though to organize coupons like that. Thanks so much for sharing! Happy Valentine's Day =)

Qtpies7 said...

I really need to get back into coupons! I gave them up for time because I have 7 kids. Now I'd like to feed them cheaper as the teens eat sooooooo much food!

Eryn said...

yikes! i think i am getting a headache! i am sooo unorganized. but i love the IDEA of organization. go rachel!

Lydia said...

I've been wondering where my scissors went!!! They look like they fit nicely in your book, don't worry about returning them!

Michelle said...

I have one of those little coupon holder accordian things. It comes with different categories, so that's where I file them away. I always put them in order of expiration, so when I look through them I just take off the front ones that need to be thrown away. I never thought there was a different way, but I guess I was wrong!

Laura @ Laura Williams' Musings said...

This is how I have organized my coupons for a long time. I started using the binder method back in 98 I think it was.

Nice to see others using this method too. It works wonderfully.
Laura

(aka LauraW68 and formerly known at LWMSAVON on couponing forums)

Laura @ Laura Williams' Musings said...

oops I just looked at my post on my blog... it was 1999 I started using the binder method.


Laura's Couponing and Refunding Hints and Tips

Renee said...

My question about the binder method is for each holder do you stash only one coupon for each item?

So if you have 40 coupons for different items then you need 40 slots?

I really like this system better then mine as you can see them more clearly, and you don't have to pull out a huge pile and go through them looking for the ones you need.

Thanks!
Renee

dave & rachel said...

Renee,
In some categories that works well, like laundry items. All the Tide coupons go together, all the downy, etc..

I guess it is mostly according to brand. I usually have several coupons in each slot.

Hope that helps!

Carrie Dilley said...

This is amazing. I wish I had thought of it!

Anonymous said...

I like that binder idea,with the picture in detail I can see more &
like it.

cinnamon2008 said...

posting problems

Anonymous said...

Wow! Great way to organize!

shadowmom9 said...

I LOVE this idea......I want one of those binders! Yes, Walmart gives me a headache, since I started couponing again and using CVS and Walgreens deals, I feel like I've been ripped off every time I go to Walmart!

dreamer3j said...

I love you coupon binder! I wanted to know if you print coupons from the internet and if so where do you keep them(they tend to be larger than mf coupons)?

dreamer3j said...

I am very impressed with your binder idea. What I want to know is if you print inter net coupons and if so do you keep them in a separaet place(they tend to be larger tham mf coupons)?

dreamer3j said...

I am very impressed with your binder idea. What I want to know is if you print inter net coupons and if so do you keep them in a separaet place(they tend to be larger tham mf coupons)?

Sonya said...

This is great. This is how I want to organize mine but I was having trouble figuring out what categories I needed. Thanks for posting this! Very helpful.

A Wonderful Life! said...

Wow I am new to this whole coupon thing and I have to say Wow. What organization. Stephanie

Jenn said...

About two months ago, my husband went on a short business trip with one of his business partners. They talked about their wives, their families...and what a great deal finder his partner's wife was. My husband came home and told me the tales...I couldn't believe it! We are struggling to make being a stay at home mom work for our family. So I began searching the web... found Money Saving Mom and then found her link to your great coupon book. I copied the fabulous idea immediately. My husband giggles at me when I whip it out.

Now I am starting a blog of my own...so many of my friends and family want to "learn" the ways of the coupon! I went back to find your site so that I could give credit where credit is due for the fabulous book of coupons. I found the site, looked briefly...then looked again...and again...then I pulled up your picture and profile and SURE ENOUGH! It's RACHEL...as in Eric's partner Dave's wife RACHEL!

I am laughing so hard at the small world and I can't wait to tell Eric when he gets home tonight that the Dave and Rachel inspiration for frugal living has come full circle!!

Now we will have more to talk about at company picnics!
**And I still think you two should come to Lawrence for dinner at Wa with us one evening! :)

Anonymous said...

I love my baseball card holders too. I tried every which way you could think of to organize coupons but found these worked best for me. I find all my coupons this way. Maryccc

Beth said...

I use this method also, and I love it. http://greenstew.com/?p=113

Cheryl said...

I love your coupon organzier and photos! I went out and bought one. I have a question--my divider pages are too small so the tabs do not stick out over the photo pages--any suggestions?

Thanks!

Cheryl
http://www.swapsavers.com/

loise said...

First and foremost, thank you for sharing your faith. It is the most important part of your blog. Secondly, how do you deal with the expiration dates? So all dates go into each pocket? My biggest problem is missing expiration dates and losing the coupon.
Thanks and God bless you.
Chris

The Kincaids said...

I am writting from Seattle WA. Somehow I came across your site and love it!!! I am a Christian stay at home mom and have been encouraged by your site!! love your coupon oragnizing ideas too!!

Trudy said...

People should read this.

grammakru52 said...

I HAVE THE SAME TYPE EXCEPT I DO MINE BY THE MONTH.I HAVE FOOD AND NON FOOD ITEMS.FOOD IN THE FRONT OF MY BINDER AND NON FOOD IN THE BACK.AS I ONLY GET PAID ONCE A MONTH ALL I HAVE TO DO IS LOOK FOR THE MONTH I WANT TO USE.THAT WORKS FOR ME.

Diane DP said...

I wish I had seen this before Christmas, I would have have liked to have made one for my daughter.

This is my first time on this blog and I don't know if you have addressed the issue of where do you find meaningful coupons?
My local paper have more advertisements for junk then what I need.
Anybody know some good internet sights?

Anonymous said...

I did the same thing, but I cut white pieces of paper to put in each slot so that I could put coupons front/back and see them easily. It took a little bit of time, but not a whole lot since I used a paper trimmer from my scrapbook stuff. Once it's done, it's done. I leave them in there and just change out the coupons.

Laura loves to cook! said...

thank you so much, i have started my binder and it is SUCH A BLESSING! i cant explain how much less of a headache it is now to use my coupons! THANK YOUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!!!!!!

I'm just the MOM said...

Super great idea! I clip, stuff in an envelope and then always FORGET! This will save me some sanity and money! Thanks!

Kathryn said...

This has nothing to do with coupons, but I wanted to share it anyway! I was thrilled when I realized you chose sovereign grace for the music on your website! Isn't that such God honoring and glorifying music! Praise God!

JCKS Mom said...

This IS a great organizer. I looked and looked for pages like this and guess they just weren't available in my area. Here's a link to where I got mine: http://www.momsaves.com/buildityourself.html

She also has lots of other great ideas for saving money, it's a cute site.

Mrs. Mommy said...

Thanks so much for the music on your site :) I started off organizing my coupons like this, but as my dexterity isn't all that great, found it really difficult. I have a similar binder, but use slip-type sheets for each insert type (pg, ss, rp, etc...) keeping them in order by date, and then one that I keep of the old baseball card style for all other loose-type ones. For those who are familiar with the Grocery Game, I switched to CouponTom and am able to simply do match up with inserts and ads that way. However you do it, this has been a great adventure! Thanks so much for your encouragement!

Mrs. Mommy said...

BTW... for JJCKS Mom - the pages are baseball/trading card pages and you can find them at someplace like Target near the front where they sell baseball/trading cards.

Preppy Little Dress said...

Thanks, I am going out and making one of these binder filing systems this afternoon! Thank you!!!

Dawn Martin said...

Looks like your pages that hold the coupons are colored. Is that true? If so, where did you purchase them? All I can find are clear pages.

Lindsey said...

I bought my pages through Ebay- with shipping for $11.50. I believe the pack is 100. Not quite sure. I know, however, this was a great deal because I've heard this are pretty expensive.

The colored tabs can be bought anywhere and can be put on any kind of page. I got mine at WalMart.

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Maggie said...

Rachel-
I want to meet you!! I think we might live close- I'm in Gladstone, MO. I work at KU Hospital.
I think we have many common interests!!!! Please contact me at pope.maggie@gmail.com
Thanks so much for your beautiful BLOG! You are quite an inspiration in many realms! You literally have a ministry going here!!! Blessings to you. Maggie

Anonymous said...

Wow, this is really a great idea!

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Anonymous said...

Good brief and this post helped me alot in my college assignement. Thanks you for your information.

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