How to save for a vacation

There are probably one million websites that will give you strategies for how to pinch pennies and save money. I am not going to cover any of that ground in this post. The one thing many of them tell you, is when saving for a specific goal, put that money in a jar as a visual motivator. Sounds great! But a plain jar? That’s not the Clever Chick way. Let’s make it fabulous!!

First off, you’re going to need a jar of some kind, preferably large enough to hold all the massive wads of cash you’ll be saving. We’ll be adding a decoration to it, and I pulled one out of an old calendar. You could use something from National Geographic, or any old magazine. You also need some glue, hopefully mod-podge, and a paint brush to spread it around.

I chose and trimmed this picture to fit between the bulges on my jar.

If you want to label your jar, I recommend using shirt paint. This, however, shows why it’s important to test your shirt paint on a separate sheet of paper first:

Ca-splosion! But, I managed to recover:

Once the word “Vacation” was dry, I flipped the picture over and spread Mod-Podge on the back. Just so you know, this picture shows waaaay too much mod-podge being used. You should probably put a fairly thin coat on the back. You also have to complete this part of the process relatively quickly so the paper shapes to the jar properly without bubbles, creases, or tears.

I laid my jar down on the gluey picture (of course making sure it was right way up), then wrapped the label around the jar. It might be easier to lay the jar on its side, then wrap the picture around it starting from one end. It would probably be easier to prevent air bubbles and creases. I also used the picture to cover up some ugly label stuff I couldn’t get off the jar.

This step needs to be completed fairly quickly, because once the glue gets on the paper, the paper starts to absorb the moisture. The paper can become weak and tear easily once it has absorbed lots of the glue (which is also why you should use less than I did). I held the jar, and smoothed the picture onto it with my fingers. Glue squished out on all sides, which I then smoothed over the outside. This is a “Do as I say, not as I do” type of craft.  I probably should have started from one end of the picture, and smoothed it to the jar as I went. Instead, I ended up with a few creases and bubbles, but unless you touch it you can’t tell. Here it is, coated in glue:

Here it is, dry and complete. You can see a couple creases, but I’m not too worried about it. At least I tried it and showed you guys how to avoid that issue. I also didn’t decorate the lid of the jar, but you can do so following this previous post of mine.

And of course you can use this method for any kind of saving goal. If you’re saving for a wedding, put a picture of a wedding cake; for a house, put a house, etc. Hubby and I have a bunch of stuff around the house that we’ve been planning to sell on eBay or Craig’s list, and any proceeds from those sales go into this jar. I’m hoping that will motivate us to finally get rid of this stuff, and declutter in the process. Here’s hoping!

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January 15, 2012. Tags: , , , . Arts and Crafts, Thriftiness is Cool.

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