Monday, July 20, 2015

Mug Organizer

      While taking a peak at other sewing studios via video on You-Tube, a hostess mentioned a mug organizer that someone gave her.  After researching a bit, I found that Simplicity Patterns actually has a pattern.  However, it is a curved pattern and uses bias binding.  I stay away from bias binding if at all possible.
       Of course being me, I thought there must be an easier way to make one of these.  I think these could make nice Christmas gifts for anyone with a desk.  


 Ex: My mug measured 4 inches tall with a circumference (around) 10½ inches. I suggest don't worry about small fractions except adding seams.
So I cut:  
      *inside/outside pieces rounded 10½ =11 x 4x2+½=8½ inches (yes pic shows it short, oops). 
      *inside pockets 11+2=13 x 8½-2= 6½ inches  
      *outside pockets  13+4=17 x 6½+½= 7 inches 
It has been determine, an "outside pockets" unit can replace the "inside pockets" unit.
Measurements revised 12/10/2015
        To evenly divide the pocket section to match outside piece,  fold outside pocket piece in half hotdog style first, then fold it and the outside piece in half & press, then again & press and then again.  The pieces will be creased into 8 sections.  You might want to chalk the line if the creases won't stay.
 With raw edges meeting, match the crease lines and pin.
  Pin the edges together.

Either make tucks or pleat the extra fabric in between pins & press.

            Stitch around raw edge of pocket.  At this time, I stitched on all edges, so as to hold fabric stable for future stitching.
Take inside pocket piece, fold in half hotdog style, then in eighths like the outside pocket was done.
Inside pockets provide more shallow pockets because of space inside mug.  
So only a slight tuck needs to be pinned.  
I slide my fingers from each pin to pull in the extra fabric.
Again, stitch around all raw edges of inside pocket piece.
Next, matching crease lines, stitch along all creases.
Stitch each crease line starting at raw edge & ending about 1/8 inch from fold 
with a zig-zag stitch set at 5.0 width and 0 length.

To make the ties you could use ribbon or fabric.
          Make the ties whatever way suits you, but make them very narrow.  My piece of fabric is one inch wide so I fold in about 3/8 in. then folded over the soft selvage edge 3/8 over that.  I let the fabric speak to me and it wanted the soft selvage to be seen.
 Cut into 4 equal pieces.
Measure distance from top of mug to top of handle
from the bottom of the mug to bottom of the handle.

Pin ties in place.
 Remember to fold in half so you'll know how far down to pin the ties from the top edge.

 THEN the next step is where we do away with bias binding!

 Lay the piece flat.
Pin the facing right sides together.
              Turn over and stitch on the side where you can see the stitching so you can be sure to stitch inside the previous stitching. I place double pins to remind me where to stop and start to leave an opening for turning the piece inside out.
               My multi-purpose foot gives a generous 1/4 when I travel along the edge of my foot. Notice the stitching will be inside the previous stitching.
               Turn right side out, fold in opening to equal the seam, then top stitch all around to close in the opening which will be inside the cup and won't be seen anyway.  I used my Edge stitching or Joining foot with my needle in left position to help my top stitching be a bit more accurate.
Wa La! No bias binding needed!
No pattern needed!
I also didn't use batting which I felt would take up more space inside the cup.
I decided to tie under the handle in both places to help stabilize more & be out of the way.
The inside pockets were plenty big,
and the outside pockets certainly add more storage space.
I think I'll make more for my other storage mugs.
& maybe some for gifts?

 Updates & Tips for the Mug Organizer including Standard Measurements
Found HERE 

More Mug Organizers
Update 8-11-20: Now make a Coffee Can Organizer 
Sharing at several Linky Parties.

Thanks to the FREE program

 Photoscape for downsizing & watermarking photo & other alterations to pictures.


  1. wow! I'm amazed by your skills and creativity :) Joy you're awesome! :) came by to say hi, since you left a comment on my blog in January (thank you so much).. today I posted 2 photos but it's not a full time come back.. anyway, left there something to see ;) xxo

  2. You have done a lovely job with the tutorial on the Mug Organizer. It came out adorable and I'm thinking an awesome gift to receive. Thank you for sharing with the Clever Chicks Blog Hop! I hope you’ll join us again next week!

    Kathy Shea Mormino
    The Chicken Chick

  3. This would make such a cute gift for a beginning sewer to store all of their new little knick knacks. I like your fabric choices and the tutorial was easy to follow.

  4. Thanks so much for sharing this wonderful tutorial.. I pinned it too ;) Kathi

  5. It looks so pretty and it's practical. A great combination. Thanks for linking to my blog hop. :)

  6. Oh that is so cute and I love how thorough the tutorial is! I can easily think of a half dozen people who'd love one of these as a gift. If you like, please come share this at the Awesome Life Friday Link Up, and have a great weekend!

    1. Thank-you for inviting me to your party! Will do! Love the kind words as well.

  7. I love sewing . This is a creative way to dress up my pencil jar. love if you share this at my Fabulous Friday Party
    Thanks Maria

  8. this is such a clever and creative design. Thank you for sharing at the Thursday Favorite Things blog hop. watch for your feature on Monday xo

    1. Thank you so much Katherine for featuring the 'Mug Organizer!'

  9. I have one of these that I got as retreat swag, but I would love to have another. Thanks for the thorough tutorial. I'm pinning it for now, in hopes of making one in the future.

  10. This is simply brilliant.

  11. I really do appreciate everyone's kind words. Sorry, for the most of you, I don't have an email contact for you or I would personally send you a thank-you email.

  12. Fantastic project and a great way to put all those mismatching mugs to use! Not mention it would certainly be a great gift! thanks for sharing on craft schooling Sunday!

  13. What a cute idea! I love how its got a spot for everything and everything in its spot. Thanks for linking up to Snickerdoodle Sunday!

  14. Thanks for this! I, too, avoid binding especially curves and have not had the time to sit down and figure out an alternative method. I have 2 mugs waiting for these and since they are larger than average mugs, I need a pattern that uses the height of the mug in cutting.

  15. j adore merciiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii

  16. OMG! This is lovely! I want to do this now...but I always want to do everything nice or neat Now lol :) I will definitely be pinning this for future reference! Thanks so much for such an easy to follow tutorial :)

  17. Such a well thought out and creative design, Joy. As always a very clear and easy to follow tutorial.

  18. Your organiser is so creative and practically perfect!! :) Thanks for the detailed tutorial, very well explained!!

  19. This little project is amazing. I love anything with lots of pockets. Thank you for sharing.

  20. I just found your site through Victoriana Quilt Designs! Oh! how I need a couple of these! Thanks for sharing!

  21. Thank you for sharing. Can't wait to try to make it.

  22. These are pretty neat, great way to use that 'ugly Christmas mug' or some other ugly mug...(like the ones the eye doctor gave my mother-in-law, lol)

    Thanks! I think this is going to be a jumping off project idea....thank you!

  23. Great and clever sewing project! This would also make a wonderful gift :) Thank you for sharing your tutorial!
    I featured it on my blog today, you can see it here:

  24. What a fabulous tutorial. Thanks for taking the time to do this!

  25. Thanks so much for the work you did, both in making the organizer as well as absolutely perfect photos and instructions. Made me think of the organizers used to fit into and over 5-gallon buckets and then I got an image of big, burly men carrying their work tools around in buckets with carriers made of cute fabrics. hahahaha Anyway, great, great job and much appreciated.

  26. Thank you for the great tutorial. Found you from a link on All Free Sewing. My friend sent me a picture of something similar. I used a 1 quart plastic container as I didn't have any extra coffee cups. Your directions were spot on for measuring the containers. Instead of ties, I just sewed the edges together. I made 4 this afternoon. My friend was ecstatic with hers!

  27. Joy, I just found this on Pinterest. I love the idea.

    But I have to ask. I would like to make some of these for our Quilts of Valor. We do a little display at some of our local events. We make items to sale, to help fund/offset postage costs to mail all of our quilts to and from our LAQ's.

    Can I make some of these to sell?

    Thank you,

    1. Maggie it is so considerate of you to ask permission. I'd be honored for you use this pattern to make funds for the QOV project which happens to be a project I work on as well. Sharing the blog would be nice, but I understand not wanting to give away your secret. Please email me some of your pictures so I can share?

  28. Made one, thanks for the tutorial.

  29. My gosh! I love it! I just made one with a soup mug and it is so GREAT! Thanks so much for the tutorial!!

  30. Okay - this is one of the coolest things I've stumbled across!!! I'm getting ready to make some dice bags for myself and for Christmas gifts and want to surprise my wife with a nice big TOTE BAG I make for her. Found this while looking. Didn't tell her what I was looking for, but showed her this. Going to give it a try! Thanks!

  31. Just found this page - great tutorial - this would also be good for the times when I break off a handle and the mug is useless. Thanks for sharing :)

    1. I love your idea. Another way to reuse rather than throw away!

  32. That's brilliant. I agree, sometimes lining something can be A LOT easier than bias binding!

  33. Thank you for sharing this. I hate binding and was thinking about doing something like this and then I saw your post with all the measurements with directions thank you thank you thank you. they are beautiful. I have a 9 yr grand daughter than loves to sew , so this would be a great project for her.

  34. Your pattern is great. I also rec'd one as a gift and took it apart so I could duplicate it.
    I would rather use your pattern for the next one, but when I click on printer friendly, it tells me it is the incorrect URL. Rather than copying and pasting the whole thing, can you tell me how to get the printer friendly version? Thanks.

    1. I'm not sure of the process you are using when you talk about "printer friendly version"? When I want to print a web page in my browser I go to File and print. I do first check print preview to see what pages I actually want to print. I have not specifically made a printer version so there would be no link available. Thank you for your interest in this pattern. Have fun with it.

  35. I made this yesterday. It is perfect for storing my crochet needles. Thank you for your tutorial!


Have a JOYful day!
Leave a comment or an email if you like.
I will enJOY either.
Please LEAVE YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS if you need a reply.