Crazy Easy Mug Rug Tutorial

Greetings Cottage Friends.

Last week I showed you the snow globe AnnMarie sent me and the little patchwork rug I whipped up here.

Little Patchwork Rug

Rebecca asked me to explain how I made it. There are so many great mug rug tutorials on the web from professional quilters and sewists that I'm almost embarrassed to share my own ridiculous method. However, it's really easy and quick if you just want to make some basic no-frills mug rugs. Once you get rolling you can whip out a bunch of these in no time. And they're inexpensive to make. So, if you're interested, read on. 

I made a couple of different rug mugs (or coasters if you want to call them that) just for this tutorial. As I mentioned, these are very basic. You could certainly add some interfacing or a little batting for added thickness, bind and quilt them, add ric-rac, buttons or other decoration. Make them shabby chic. Whatever your mind can dream up.

As do most quilters, I have lots of scraps. Mug rugs are great scrap busters.

Here we go:

1. I start with a 5" square. (I cut this one from a larger piece of fabric.)

2. Choose a fabric scrap and lay it over the first square. This scrap needs to be 5" wide so I had to trim it a bit. (I don't worry about the length. My scrap just happens to be about 3-1/2" long, but any length will do. You'll see why in a minute.)

3. Choose a second 5" wide scrap and lay it next to the first scrap. Together the total length of the two scraps is more than 5". That's okay. I'll take care of that soon. 

4. Place the two scraps together, right sides facing.
    Join with a 1/4" seam.
    Open, and press seam down with my fingernail.

5. Turn the joined piece over and lay the 5" square on top. You can see that the two pieces I joined are now longer than the 5" green square by about 1-1/2"

6. I'm trimming off that excess.

7. Now I have a 5" square. If I wanted to I could just call this newly made square good. But it's pretty boring. . .it needs another patch.

8. I choose a white scrap (this happens to be about 2-1/2" wide) and place it on top of the joined piece.

9. Now I trim the length of that white piece down to 5".

10. Line up the white strip even with the top of the joined piece, right sides together.
Sew the white strip to the pieced square with a 1/4" seam.
I end up with a larger than 5" square.

11. Using my grid I decide how I want my patchwork to line up and trim off the excess.

12. Now I've got two 5" squares. 

13. I place them right sides together and sew 1/4" seam around all sides, making sure to leave  a 2" opening on one side (for turning the inside out). 
Clip the corners.
Turn the inside out.

14. Gently push out the corners with a pointed tool. 
Turn under the salvage of the 2" opening  and press.

15. Top stitch 1/4" from the edge on all sides.

And that's it.

A pretty mug rug.

Now here's another mug rug that's super fun to make and a good way to use up really small strips of leftover fabric.

Choose whatever scrap strips you like and sew them together with 1/4" seams. Here I'm using 5" long strips in various widths.

Just keep adding and sewing until you have the look and size you want.

Trim as needed. In this case I'm trimming to a 5" square. 

Remember this scrap leftover from the first mug rug tutorial above?

I'm going to use it for the reverse side.

Adding another, larger scrap.

Sew the two pieces right sides together with a 1/4" seam.

Trim to 5" width.

Here are my two completed squares. Follow steps #13-15 above to finish.

Here's the second finished mug rug -- front and back.

So now I've showed you how to easily make two different mug rugs. 
Aren't my dollar store mugs cute?

Have you made mug rugs? 
If not, is this something you might try?
If you make one using my tutorial, I'd love to see it. And please let me know if you have questions.

Hey, if you haven't entered my Christmas Giveaway, there's still time.  Here's what you can win.

To enter go here.



  1. Thanks, Nancy! I think I can DO this! (I especially liked the fabric piece with the pine cone on it....) ♥

  2. This is the next project I want to work on. Thanks for a great tutorial. I'll let you know if I attempt one! Hugs!

  3. Those are so very cute Nancy! I no longer have a sewing machine, so I can't make them, but they are cute! I got a sewing machine when I was 16 and had it until a few years ago. I was a bad owner and didn't keep up with it's maintenance, so it just quit working and I dumped it. I just haven't purchased a new one - some day! Blessings, Cindy

  4. Super cute Nancy. Love those dollar store mugs too. Have a great new week ahead.

  5. They are adorable - now just send me some extra time please so I can get sewing again!
    I popped into a thrift shop next to Aldi today - found a really pretty hand-painted holly sprigged glass mug, and an original box of 11 (12 must have been broken) unusual; green vintage glass Christmas balls - all for $4 - a bargain!

    Hugs - Mary

  6. This is so pretty! You did great job dear :) Thanks for sharing with us!

  7. So, so cute Nancy. I just found a sewing machine at an estate sale, even though I've never used one. I think I can make these and I will definitely give them a try once I get it up and running. Have a great week my friend!

  8. Great easy to understand tutorial.

    Thank you ~ FlowerLady

  9. What a sweet craft to make for a gift with a cute mug! So easy too! Worth hauling the sewing machine out for!

  10. Well aren't you crafty, Nancy!! These are super sweet and easy enough that I may even be able to make a few. I certainly have enough fabric! ;) Thanks for sharing. xo

  11. What fun! I've not made mug rugs but I'll have to add them to my list of must-do's after the holidays.

  12. Cute little mug rugs. I make mug rugs, pot holders, table runners using this method but I put batting in them and Insul Brite for potholders. It is a fun creative way to use up those little scraps.

  13. Nancy just simply adorable and charming! Cheerful, bright and creative!

  14. Great job with the tutorial. :-) Thank you!

  15. Oh these mug rugs are so fun, and your tutorial is awesome! My sewing machine really needs to get dusted off, these would make perfect little gifts! It is a great way to use up those leftover scraps of fabric for sure! Your giveaway looks great, I'm headed there next! :)

  16. Hi Nancy, Great tutorial . . . it takes a lot of time and stop and goes to make a great tutorial and I appreciate all the hard work that goes into them. Oh, and that black fabric with the pine cones is beautiful. I'm delighted that you are spending time enjoying sewing and all the fun projects that you can do now that your lovely cottage is completed. You've put in a lot of work and now it's time to take a break and enjoy. Here's wishing you both a wonderful first Christmas in your new home.
    Connie :)

  17. Hi Nancy!! We are busy making wooden coasters over at That Country Place...I love your quilted ones...a great way to use up scraps of material for sure!!

  18. What a fun little project. I used a similar technique to make patchwork cuff bracelets. Quick and easy!


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