For quite some time, SG and I have been fans of Dave Ramsey, like HUGE fans. If you are unfamiliar with him you need to go check him out STAT. He is a Christian financial teacher, counselor, & adviser.His primary messages are to get out of debt, stay out of debt, live within or below your means, build wealth, & become a giver. All of this leads to FINANCIAL PEACE. And who in their right mind doesn't want that?!
One of the ways Dave suggests staying on and sticking to your budget is to use the envelope system. This involves designating envelopes to certain spending categories and putting the allotted cash (yes cash, it still exists) in each envelope. There is nothing like the physical, tangible payment method of cash to serve as a true ceiling to your budget.
I, the household money manager, have 3 envelopes: groceries, gas (which I don't use cash for, but keep up with my receipts), and miscellaneous. Under the miscellaneous category falls clothing, gifts, sewing stuff, etc. This category varies in amount from month to month.
Recently, I've grown tired of paper envelopes in my purse. They are all white, look the same, and cause me to fumble clumsily through my purse at the check out line. And over time they fall apart.
So this little dilemma inspired me to sew some substantial brightly colored envelopes using fabric scraps. They will last longer, are easier to locate in my purse, and can be easily thrown in the worsh'.
Here's a little step by step.
1) Find a nice size envelope and use it as your pattern. Keep in mind that your end result will be somewhat smaller than your pattern.
2) Cut out fabric and lining front and back.
3) Sew fabric and lining right sides together like you are making a small pillow case. Leave a small opening to turn right side out. Do this for both the front and back of your envelope.
Turn right side out. *The purpose of this is to secure the lining. I'm sure there are better and easier ways to do this, but this worked best for me.
4) Place right sides together (right sides: the side of the envelope you want to show on the outside), pin, and stitch up on 3 sides.
5) Turn right side out and sew button or place snap.
That's it. Fun in a nerdy kind of way.
I'm the nerd in the family (for all you Dave fans).
Hope to be back soon, but in the mean time...as Dave would say...
"Act your wage."