How to Sew a Scrap-Buster Mug Rug

How to sew a mug rug with fabric scraps Nancy Zieman

How to Sew a Scrap-Buster Mug Rug

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How to sew a mug rug with fabric scraps Nancy ZiemanHere’s an ideal summer sewing project—colorful mug rugs! Create the reversible coaster from your fabric stash; then sit down to enjoy a cup of tea or coffee with a friend. 

Supplies, Notions, and Fabric:

ScrappyCircleMugMats NancyZieman ScrapsRequirements:

  • Each single mug rug requires:
– Four fabric squares cut 4″ x 4″
– Two interfacing squares cut 7-1/2″ x 7-1/2″
– One fleece square cut 7-1/2″ x 7-1/2″


  • Cut four squares each measuring 4″ x 4″ from four fabric scraps.

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  • Cut one square of fabric 7-1/2″ x 7-1/2″ for the back.
  • Cut one square  7-1/2″ x 7-1/2″ from the fleece and two same-sized squares from the interfacing.
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  •  Join pairs of squares, right sides together, using a 1/4″ marked seam allowance,.

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  • Press seam allowances open.
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  • Align the center seamline, right sides together, and pin the two pair together.
  • Join fabrics using the 1/4″ marked seam allowance.
  • Press seam allowances open.

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  • Use the Carefree Curves template to trace a circle onto the stacked fabrics. 
ScrappyCircleMugMats NancyZieman TracedCurve
  • To create the top of the mug rug, layer pieces in this order:
    1. Fleece, adhesive side down
    2. Sewn Four-Patch, right side up
    3. Interfacing, adhesive side up

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  • For the mug rug back, layer pieces in this order:
    1. 7-1/2″ fabric square, right side up
    2. Interfacing square, adhesive side up
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  • Stitch directly on the marked lines of both the top and bottom sets.

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  • Trim excess fabric 1/8″ past the stitching line using a pinking rotary cutting blade, on both top and bottom pieces.

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  • Use scissors to trim away excess interfacing, leaving 1″ of interfacing.

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  • Turn the interfacing to the wrong side.

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  • Carefully, smooth the circle edges with the turner.
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Note from Nancy: Notice that the adhesive side of the fusible fleece is facing you as you smooth the interfacing. We’ll use this adhesive to fuse the top and bottom circle shapes together in the center of our final mug rug. Be mindful of the adhesive during the next pressing step.
  • Press the curved edge along the interfacing only, of both the top and bottom sections.
ScrappyCircleMugMats NancyZieman o

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  • Layer the two circles, wrong sides together.

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  • Press.

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  • Position and set the seam guide to allow you to stitch a consistent edgestitch around the circle.

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  • Stitch in the ditch, sewing along the seams. If needed, use a fabric scrap to start the stitching onto the mug rug. Cut away extra fabric when stitching is complete.
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How to sew a mug rug with fabric scraps Nancy ZiemanWatch Sewing With Nancy online 

For additional fun sewing projects, pick up my book Sew Simple with Rectangles & Squares.

Sew Simple with Rectangles & Squares Book by Nancy ZiemanOr watch Sew Simple with Rectangles & Squares online at

Watch Sewing With Nancy on your iPad, iPod Touch, or iPhone; download the app.


Bye for now,

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  • Rosemary
    July 25, 2015

    I now have a “Sewing with Nancy” folder on my desktop just overflowing with great ideas!! Thanks. You are so appreciated!!

  • peaceful
    July 25, 2015

    Quilting would have been much easier if I had learned to sew first. This little project teaches both, addressing guidelines that are basic but actually major for both sewing and quilting. Nice small project. Thank you.

  • Pat O.
    July 25, 2015

    Another great and colorful idea for using those small pieces.
    Thank you.

  • Wilmuth Loyall
    July 25, 2015

    Cool! Now I will delve into my scrap basket, which I hope to have depleted by summer’s end. Thank you, Nancy, for the quick/small projects; really like the mug rugs! Prayers for your continuing re-hab and healing. W. Loyall

  • Gail Beam
    July 25, 2015

    Another super tutorial that is easy to follow and understand!
    Thank you

  • Helen
    July 25, 2015

    Another great idea for using scraps….clear and precise instructions. Love it!

  • Starla
    July 25, 2015

    I love making mug rugs. This is a new technique to try!

  • Judy Kram
    July 25, 2015

    Looks like a fun project! Can hardly wait to try it.

  • Frances Ruta
    July 26, 2015

    I love having to look on the computer and find so many things to make from Nancy…..the objects bring me so much joy and love…..Thank You Nancy

  • Lynn
    July 26, 2015

    These mug rugs will be great for serving cold beverages in hot and humid weather. All the condensation will be soaked up and avoid dripping off the glass!

  • joyce wilson
    July 27, 2015

    Sewing around curves is the number 1 grrr hair pulling bane of my sewing existence. I am going to order the 6-in-1 stick n stitch guide. It sounds like just the tool I’ve been searching for. Hopefully now I can unclinch my jaw while sewing the darn things. Hope you are doing well Miss Nancy.

  • Georgeanne Lowrey
    July 28, 2015

    I love the make-up bag and weekend tote. Thank you for instructions that show exactly how to create this pieces. Looking forward to trying them … maybe even Christmas presents for my family!

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