Free Cash Envelope System Template and a Tutorial!

Update: I opened up an Etsy shop!! Go purchase your pre-made cash envelopes!

As I’ve mentioned before, we went to the cash system endorsed by Dave Ramsey not too long ago. We literally froze our credit cards (in a cup of water in the freezer) and started to pay cash for everything that wasn’t a regular bill (which I pay online).  I spent the first month or so figuring out how we were going to make it work for us.  I used a plastic accordion coupon organizer that I already had, and stuffed plain, standard sized envelopes inside of it.  Each envelope contained cash for a specific category.  We started small – with groceries and gas – and then eventually added a few more categories as we discovered how we spend.

The idea behind using cash is that it hurts to hand over that $20 bill.  Right?  It’s a lot easier to just hand the cashier the credit or debit card and not really calculate how much you have spent.  ALSO, you can see how much is still in the envelope and change your spending patterns accordingly.  When the cash is gone . . . it is gone!

I can’t even begin to tell you what this has done for us.  Not only did we discover that we can live on less than we thought, but we have actually been able to give more generously, too!  Plus, I’ve mentioned before that I really don’t like spending money.  Well, okay, that was before we went to the cash system.  See, it felt like we never had any money, so I never spent anything on myself, and that was just miserable.  Now that we have money designated for me, I don’t have any problem spending it and having fun!  FREEDOM, I tell you.  It’s wonderful.

So, today’s FREE template is in honor of the cash system. It’s an envelope!  Click on the image to download it for FREE!  But, keep reading, because I want to show you what I did with it.

I decided that it was high time I had prettier envelopes.  I purchased a new wallet recently  which came with cash envelopes.  However, the envelopes had LINES on them.  You know; like you fill them out.  Oh, the pressure.  I like my plain ol’ envelopes, thank you very much.  So, I modified the wallet and just put plain envelopes in there instead.  NOW, thanks to my new template, I have pretty ones!  Here’s how!

Before I get started, let me direct you to some pretty good tutorials (if I do say so myself!) found at The Hybrid Chick:

Where to Start – offers suggestions for basic materials to get you started with hybrid, if you are interested in using digital papers with your template.

Using Templates – guides you through the process of using my templates from downloading to adding digital paper, and preparing to print.

Borderless Printing – shows you how to find your borderless printing option on your printer . . . or at least gets you headed in the right direction.

Now, print your project! Of course, you can use digital paper or simply print the lines only version on some of the patterned paper or cardstock in your stash.

For my project, I chose to print the lines only pdf file directly onto some Close To My Heart patterned paper from my stash.  (From the Emporium Collection.)

I scored on the dashed lines with a bone folder and cut on the solid lines using my craft knife.

Then, I folded the sides in.

And folded the bottom flap up.

Next, I used a double sided tape runner to adhere the sides to the bottom flap.

And, the envelope is done!

However, I had other things in mind.  So, I mass produced.

And gathered all of the envelopes up, stacking them nicely.

I cut a piece of cardstock that I would eventually slip into my wallet, and punched some holes at regular intervals.  I think I punched 7 holes.

The other side of this piece of paper has a small strip of patterned paper just to act as a reinforcer.  Plus, it’s kinda pretty.  You’ll see that later on.  For now, I used my Crop-O-Dile to punch holes through all of the layers.

And then I sewed a loose blanket stitch with ribbon.  I actually didn’t know how to do this, so I Googled it.  Hee, hee!

I flipped the cardstock around so that it could tuck inside my wallet.

I created some labels in Photoshop that contain some of my regular categories. (Click picture to download.)

I talk more about my envelope categories and how I use them in this post: Cash Envelope Categories: What Works For Us.

I punched them out with my 1 3/8 circle punch and mounted them on a scalloped circle punched with my scalloped punch!

And, I tucked some cash inside!

This is what my wallet now looks like:

So pretty!  I will totally enjoy whipping this bad boy out at the grocery store!

OF COURSE, this envelope template is just a regular, run-of-the-mill, standard sized envelope.  However, now you can pretty it up with your papercrafting supplies and go to town!  Oh, I just love that!  If you decide that you like this template, please check out my store to see the rest of my items!  I have all kinds of fun, unique papercraft templates to choose from!

Edit (11/24/10):

Update: I opened up an Etsy shop!! Go purchase your pre-made cash envelopes!

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