KISS translated = Less Stress, Less Fuss, More Time. Bottom line; It ain't Rocket Science! Don't let those OCD tendencies make you nutz trying to perfectly organize your coupons.
Honest to Girl Scout Cookies I've seen the GIANT binders and ladies sitting on the floor in the soup aisle leafing through every page while two more Gigantic Binders sit in the cart. Unless you are stocking a convenience store, you don't need all that! Then again, to each his own....
I've done the box with tabs, the binder with tabs and both of these methods were great for Micro-Managing in the office. However, they are risky in the grocery store because they can both fall on the floor and scatter coupons like you wouldn't believe! They are also risky because they can be left behind and by the time you realize what's up, you've lost LOTS of money! ALSO, you broadcast that you are a serious couponer and for some reason that is frowned upon. I have only been hounded by ONE store. Oddly enough, it was the cashiers and customer service manager that made it very difficult for me, not the manager.
So, in the interest of being discreet I combined and tweaked to make my own. It works for me and might be the answer you are looking for.
Something to fit into my purse
Holds a LOT of coupons
Won't scatter if dropped
Not easy to forget
SIMPLE to use
Here is what I came up with:
Baseball Card Sheets....found at hobby stores, wall mart may have them.
A free Binder Ring
Stretchy pull over covering to prevent coupons flying everywhere if dropped
I had loads of Baseball Card sheets. I slit the pages into thirds horizontally/across.
Gather up all the sheets and make sure the openings are on the top, the binder holes/strips will be on the left.
Take a hole punch and punch one hole toward the top to align all the sheets.
Get your big ring and slide it through the holes you just punched.
Now for the most important part of all! The stretchy cover:
I took a pair of dressy socks you would wear with slacks. I wanted it to be neutral, discreet and not call attention.
Cut the toe out, straight across. Then stitch a bit in the middle so it will slide onto the Binder Ring.
Slide the sock or whatever you choose over the binder ring.
Then close the ring.
To organize the coupons can be insanity if you are the least bit a perfectionist. So, think in GENERAL terms. Ketchup, soy sauce, pickles, gravy...I call these Condiments and try to group them together. I gave up on trying to organize them with the stores because the stores like to change things around, put beer where the crackers were and generally keep you hunting and pecking so you will see EVERY thing you ever wanted and increase their chances of your placing that item in your basket.
We are more clever and have learned to NOT do that right? Yes, my lovelies, we are ready for the task!
So, if you have to fold a coupon, do it. No biggie. The baseball cards allow you to see both sides so you will still have all the info you need right in front of you.
You don't have to have all the different sizes and shapes and color coded cut outs. Seriously, you will have peace of mind this way!
Go ahead and load up your coupons....
You put dairy and biscuits and fridge cookies and yogurt in the same general area. If the grocery stores have fresh orange juice by the milk, then you can too! You will also have a list, right? So you already know what you are looking for, the general area it is in your Ring, you can pull those coupons and check others.
Look how nice it fits into my purse!
That purse goes into the basket, zip it open, get out my shopping list, pull the sock back about half way, leaving the coupons IN the purse at all times.
Take those coupons for that trip and slip them ALL into one or two pouches I save at the back of the Ring System. Get to the front to check out, my Qs are in one hand, debit card in the other, purse zipped and on my arm.
You can have fourteen kids pulling at you or one Grandmother who can't quit talking and you are ready to go without having to triple check you got your binder or box, Don't have to carry it just so to the car, you can actually hold your little ones hand for safety. No Binder slipping out of your hands in the parking lot trying to open the door, hold the cart, hold the binder, hold the child. EASY!
Got more coupons for the BIG sale?? Great! Simply add more pages. Just got a few Qs to shop with, Super! Take a few pages out. That stretchy sock fits over all of it.
Well, this is what works for me....maybe it will work for you, too!