Festive Mug Rug Swap on

Over at The Fussy Cutters Club on Facebook we’ve been making and sharing some fabulous creations that use fussy cutting.  Anyone who’s followed my adventures knows how much I love a good fussy cut. With the festive season rapidly approaching I thought it might be time to have some festive fussy cutting fun (say that three times fast!).

Given that Christmas is just over a month away I thought we could make a quick and fun project that you can either keep, gift or swap. (Or you can do all three if you want!) Want to know more?

What is fussy cutting?

It’s when you find a particular design, picture or print in your fabric and then cut around it so it fits into a patch or block on your quilt or sewing project. Often fussy cutting is used to create a secondary pattern within the pattern. It’s all about cutting your fabric with intent and being conscious about how the design/print/colour of your fabric will be used in the completed project.

Simple really. It’s all about having fun with fabric.  If you cut fabric with the intention of highlighting the print, pattern or design then you’re fussy cutting. It’s not all about being tricky and making complicated patterns, I love using fussy cutting to highlight my favourite bits of fabrics I love.

What is a Mug Rug?

I’ve done “wide consultation” (I asked Google) and all the “experts” (what Google showed me) agree that a mug rug lies somewhere between a coaster and a placement. Basically it’s big enough for you to put a cup and a snack on it. (I’ll leave it to you to decide how big a “snack” is… a family size Cadbury block is probably not a normal snack, right?)

In my research I found this fabulous printed inclusion that Heidi (of Buttons and Butterflies) shared for when she gifts mug rugs. (Her friend Gretchen designed it and it’s super cute!)

ButtonsandButterflies - Mug Rug Tag

Image source: Buttons and Butterflies.

Perfect right? It’s such a great idea and something that you could easily make to include in your swap parcel (or if you’re giving these as gifts this holiday season).

I also found this great description from Erin (of Two More Seconds):

What is a Mug Rug?  A small, fun to create, mini quilt that is mostly there to look pretty on your desk and soak up your drink of choice’s drips and condensation, as well as giving you full-on permission to eat some cookies, since, well, that extra space off to the side of your drink is just THERE for you to use.

How big is a Mug Rug?  As big as you want it to be, usually falling somewhere in between the usual size of a coaster and a placemat.  4″x6″-ish to 6″x10″-ish.

How do I make a Mug Rug?  Just like you were making a mini quilt!

Mug Rug Tutorials & Patterns

I’ve collated 10 Mug Rug Tutorials and Patterns to help get you thinking about the type of mug rug you’d like to make. (There’s even a mug rug for those of you that “want to make a snowman”… Sorry, couldn’t help myself!)  10 Mug Rug Tutorials and Patterns collated by Angie Wilson of Image credit goes to: 1. Sew Sara | 2. Not So Plain Jane | 3. House of A La Mode | 4. The Crafty Quilter | 5. Sunflower Stitcheries | 6. Sew Fantastic | 7. Pleasant Home | 8. Nero's Post and Patch | 9. Notes from the Patch | 10. Pleasant Home1. Hexagon Shaped Mug Rug at Sew Sara

2. Snowman Mug Rug by Not So Plain Jane

3. Hexagon Flower Mug Rub by House of A La Mode

4. Holiday Mug Rug by The Crafty Quilter

5. Log Cabin Christmas Mug Rugs by Sunflower Stitcheries

6. Scrappy Colour Block Mug Rug by Sew Fantastic

7. Dear Santa Mug Rug by Pleasant Home

8. Mini Quilt Tutorial by Nero’s Post and Patch

9. Circle Pocket Mug Rug by Notes from the Patch

10. Scrappy Trees Mug Rub by Pleasant Home

These are just suggestions, you can make your mug rug any way you want to as long as it fits the size requirements and it must be quilted (this means there’s 3 layers – back, front and wadding (can be flannel, batting, insulated batting or fusible batting).

Because I love a good swap (it’s a great way to meet new people and have some fun) I’ve decided to set up a quick swap to help all of us share some festive well wishes and start 2015 off with a bang.

Swap Details

Make 1 mug rug (can be festive themed or not) to post out to a fellow swapper and in return you’ll get a mug rug of your own from a swapper. (Note: the person you’re sending to may not be the person you receive from.)

The mug rug must meet the following size requirements:

Minimum size – 4″ x 6″

Maximum size – 6″ x 10″

If you do a shape other than a rectangle, the biggest side of the shape cannot exceed 10″.

The mug rug must be quilted – this means there’s 3 layers: a back, a front and a layer of wadding of some sort (can be flannel, batting, fusible batting, insulated batting, etc.)

You must use good quality quilting weight cottons. (We want this mug rug to last through multiple washes and spills.)

The beauty of a mug rug is that it’ll fit in a standard size letter and be quite light, so because of that I’m only running one worldwide swap. (This means you may have to post internationally.)

Swap extras – there’s no need to include any extras with this swap so please don’t feel like you have to, but if you’d like to it’s always a nice inclusion. (Just make sure to check your partners details to make sure they don’t have any allergies.)

Important Dates

Swap open for registration until: 26 November

Items to be in the post by: 17 December

Please be mindful of the time of year, postal services are under pressure and so delays can (and do) occur.

I’m using SwapBot to host this swap – it’s a free service, but you will be required to sign up to join in the swap.

You can sign up to the swap by clicking this link.

If you’d like to know more or have a question either leave me a comment here or contact me via my contact page.

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  1. Hi Angie, thanks for the inspiration with the mug rugs. I have made two with the test pieces from the Mystery Quilt I am doing. They look so cute. I too didn’t think I’d want to use for drink mug & snacks, but I now have one by my computer & one where I sit in the evening. They really give a little lift when I look at them and I feel I have achieved something. Wool wad them a bit thicker & they can be a pot holder, fold over & you have a glasses case, somewhere to place a phone & keys or keeping sewing bits in a square instead of all over the table. I was inspired to have a go when someone gave me a 12 x 12 ‘rug’ and I thought it an odd thing, but I placed it on top of my file cabinet as a mat & love that too. Making all the surfaces soft around here! Thanks again,
    Will the participants post on the fussy cutters page when they are done do you think? It would be great to see what everyone makes.

  2. Angie, I have a question about SwapBot. I know who my partner for the mug rug swap is because I saw that on the swap bot site, but I can’t find her address on there. Am I supposed to be getting an email with that information, or can you point me where to look to get it? Thanks…Tracey

  3. Quick question about the deadline to post. Is everybody supposed to mail their mug rug that day or is it OK to mail sooner? I know some swaps are very particular about mailing between certain dates.

    • You’re more than welcome to post it before the deadline. The deadline is when it has to be posted by. Does that make sense? (Bit brain frozen today…)

      • Total sense, Angie! I’ll try to mail early, but it all depends on finding the time and waiting on the arrival of a last-minute purchase for that perfect fabric!

  4. Thanks for all the inspiration. I am last minute as usual & don’t know that i will get a swap done, but I have started a mug rug – although I feel the need to add rounds and make it a lap rug! But trying to stick to the point & not have another UFO, I look forward to sharing a photo this time & maybe swap next time.

  5. Thank you for a great list of mug rugs. I’m going to make some as Christmas presents, this have given me even more options than original idea. Of course I love the hexie ones!

  6. Some great ideas! But we are traveling several times before 17th so Inam resisting but will use a couple
    Le of these tutorials sometime I am sure!

    • I’ve never made one either and I don’t drink hot drinks and so I’ve never really had a need, but I love seeing them and I’m thinking they’ll make great mini mini’s for my wall (plus it’ll be a good skills tester for me).

    • Moi non plus, je ne l’ai jamais fait. Mais il faut dire que je commence le patchwork . Merci beaucoup à Angie de donner des idées. Le tapis de tasse me semble réalisable, en espérant que la personne qui le recevra ne soit pas pointilleuse. Je l’aurais fais avec beaucoup d’amour et de fierté.

  7. Hi Angie! Thank you so much for including my mug rug tutorial here! Great post and this swap sounds really fun. I’ll go to read your links. Greetings from GREECE! Teje

    • Hi Teje, I tries to respond to your email but it bounced back saying the email address you provided doesn’t exist. I’m not sure what went on there, but I can answer your questions here.

      SwapBot will allocate a swap partner (and send you an email with the details in it) once the swap sign ups have closed (26 November). Once you have your swap partner details you can check out their profile on SwapBot and see if they have any other social media accounts, etc. and see what they like. You’ll also be able to email them if you have any questions about what they like, etc.

      Yep, when you have your partner allocated you can start making your mug rug.

      Hope this helps, if you need anything else please just let me know.