Mug rugs make great gifts and they are the perfect size for trying out new-to-you sewing and quilting techniques. The beginner-friendly Quilted Mug Rug pattern uses the classic Rail Fence quilt block pattern. This project is made easier using pre-cut fabric and strip piecing. If you’re new to sewing, I’ve even embedded an entire video class I taught that shows you how to make the Quilted Mug Rug from start to finish!
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My long-time readers know that I was first introduced to quilting through the books of Eleanor Burns, who emphasized the speed of strip piecing. Strip piecing is even easier today because there are so many options available for pre-cut fabrics. For each Quilted Mug Rug, you’ll need 5 strips from a “honey bun” roll of pre-cut 1-1/2” strips (or 5 strips in the same size cut from other fabrics). This means that you can get 8 mug rugs out of each honey bun roll.
Mug rugs are pretty forgiving, as far as sewing or quilting patterns, because they don’t have to be any particular “exact” size. Generally, you’ll want them to be large enough to fit your mug…
…and a tasty treat. So, as long as your final measurements are from 6-1/2″ to 8″ on the short side, and from 9″ to 11″ on the long side, your mug rug should be fine!
The Quilted Mug Rug is a great beginner sewing project. As you put together your own Quilted Mug Rug, you’ll learn how to do strip piecing, how to square up blocks, and how to turn and finish your mug rug using simple straight-line quilting. I taught a video class on the Quilted Mug Rug for my friends at FaveCrafts and We Like Sewing. You can find the video below the pattern instructions, along with a link to find out more about their virtual craft classes.
Quilted Mug Rug
Rail Fence Block Sewing Pattern by Underground Crafter
Mug rugs make great gifts and are just the right size for trying out new sewing and quilting skills. This mug rug uses the classic Rail Fence quilt block, and is made easier using pre-cut fabric and strip piecing.
Continue on for the free sewing pattern, or buy the ad-free PDF in my Payhip shop.
- Approximately 9” width x 6-1/2” height.
- Sewing machine with straight stitch and leveling foot such as the Baby Lock Brilliant (shown in the pattern and video class) or Jubilant.
- 45 mm rotary cutter, acrylic ruler (recommended: at least 3.5” wide), and self-healing cutting mat.
- Fabric shears or thread snips.
- Hera marker or fabric marker, pen, or chalk.
- Quilting pins or fabric clips.
- Oliso Mini Project Iron and Sewing by Sarah Wool Press ‘n Lock Tiles™, or iron and iron safe surface.
- Basic sewing supplies (seam ripper, etc.)
- Optional: 1/4″ quilting presser foot with guide for seaming, walking foot for quilting through layers
- Universal sewing needle.
- 100% cotton thread for bobbin and top thread to coordinate, blend, or contrast with your fabrics.
- Cotton or cotton blend batting – 1 piece cut to 7” x 10”.
- 100% cotton quilting fabric.
- 5 strips cut to 1-1/2” wide x width of fabric – I used 5 strips from a “honey bun” roll of pre-cut 1-1/2” strips.
- If you’re new to rotary cutting, watch the video below to see how to safely cut fabric and batting with a rotary cutter, acrylic ruler, and self-healing mat.
- If you can’t see the video tutorial above for cutting with a rotary cutter, click HERE to watch it on YouTube.
- Use a 1/4″ seam allowance throughout, unless otherwise mentioned.
- A video class showing how to sew the Quilted Mug rug is available at the bottom of the pattern.
- Press batting to remove wrinkles if necessary.
- If cutting strips from yardage, press to remove wrinkles and then cut. If selecting fabric from a honey bun, select 5 strips and press to remove wrinkles.
- Select 3 strips to use for blocks. (The remaining 2 strips will be used for borders.)
- Position first 2 strips with right sides together. Pin or clip along long edge (optional). Sew 2 strips together along long edge.
- Position joined strips to third strip with right sides together. Pin or clip along long edge (optional). Sew strips together along long edge.
- Press joined strips. You can press seams open, or towards the darker fabric.
- Trim the joined strips into 12 blocks, each measuring 3-1/2”. Start by trimming off the selvedge and continue cutting 3-1/2” pieces. For best results, center the middle strip (which should measure 1”).
- The lines of each block should be positioned perpendicular to the lines on the adjacent block. Sew the blocks together in rows of 3 blocks with reinforcing stitches at the start and end of each block.
- Sew 2 rows of 3 blocks together for the Front with reinforcing stitches at the start and end of each row. Repeat for the Back. Trim the pieces to the same size.
- Position the fourth strip right sides facing along the top long edge of the Front piece and sew together with reinforcing stitches at the start and end of each border. Trim strip and repeat along bottom long edge of Front piece. Press seams.
- Position the fifth strip right sides facing along the left short edge of the Front piece and sew together with reinforcing stitches at the start and end of each border. Trim strip and repeat along right short edge of Front piece. Press seams.
- For Back piece, repeat the same process but use the fifth strip along the long edges and the fourth strip along the short edges. Press seams.
- Trim Front, Back, and batting to the same size.
Assemble and Finish
- Position Front and Back pieces with right sides together. Position batting underneath Front and Back pieces facing the wrong side of the fabric. Pin or clip together.
- Using a 1/2″ seam allowance and sewing through all 3 layers, with reinforcing stitches at start and end, seam along both long edges and one short edge completely. On the final short edge, leave an opening approximately 3” wide.
- Trim excess batting and threads and clip corners.
- Pull project right side out through opening.
- Pin or clip opening closed. Sew a topstitch around the entire mug rug, seaming the opening closed.
- Use your Hera marker to mark quilting lines as desired. Be sure to follow the instructions on your batting about the maximum distance between quilting lines. Using a leveling or walking foot and starting and ending with reinforcing stitches, sew straight lines on your marked quilting lines to quilt through all three layers. Clip threads and press if necessary.
© 2022 by Marie Segares (Underground Crafter). This pattern is for personal use only. You may use the pattern to make unlimited items for yourself, for charity, or to give as gifts. You may sell items you personally make by hand from this pattern. Do not violate Marie’s copyright by distributing this pattern or the photos in any form, including but not limited to scanning, photocopying, emailing, or posting on a website or internet discussion group. If you want to share the pattern, point your friends to this link: https://undergroundcrafter.com/2022/11/10/quilted-mug-rug-rail-fence-block/. Thanks for supporting indie designers!
I taught a video class for FaveCrafts, “Learn to Sew a Quilted Mug Rug,” which you can watch below. You can find out more about their virtual craft classes here.