Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial

Mug rugs are fun, quick small quilts that can be completed in an afternoon.  With this free mug rug pattern, you will learn how to make a pumpkin mug rug quilt just the right size for a coffee mug or juice glass and a tasty snack.

Pumpkin Mug Rug Pattern & Tutorial - fb


What is a mug rug?  A mug rug is a mini quilt larger than a coaster but smaller than a placemat.  The typical size of a mug rug is anywhere between 4" x 7" up to 12" x 8".  Another term used for mug rugs is mug mats.

If you would like to learn how to make a pumpkin mug rug for Halloween, just watch our video tutorial or keep reading this post for a photo tutorial with step-by-step instructions.

For more fun, free Fall and Halloween DIY crafts including kids crafts, centerpieces, decorations, costumes and more, go to our 20+ Fall and Halloween Craft page.

COMPLETE VIDEO TUTORIAL AVAILABLE! The video below is a preview, to watch the whole video tutorial, click the link Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial to watch in Youtube.

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how to sew a pumpkin mug rug with this free pattern

Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Finished

supplies YOU will NEED for mug rug tutorial:

  • Fabric
  • Rotary Cutter, Ruler and Mat
  • Sewing Machine
  • Iron and Iron Board
  • Basic Sewing Supplies

pumpkin block assembly

Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Mug Rug Pattern

Fabric Cutting Instructions

Before purchasing fabric for this quilting project, check out your fabric stash.  It is an excellent way to use up those little pieces of fabric you have.  I found I already had on hand all the fabric I needed to make the mug rug.

Cut the fabric pieces according to the following cutting instructions:

Pumpkin Fabric
1 - 4 1/2" x 4 1/2"

Background Fabric
5 - 1 1/2" squares
1 - 2 1/4" x 1 1/2"  rectangle
1 - 1 1/4" x 1 1/2" rectangle
2 - 1 1/2" x 5 1/2" strips
2 - 1 1/2" x 6 1/2" strips

Pumpkin Stem Fabric
1 - 1" x 1 1/2" rectangle

Pumpkin Leaf Fabric
1 - 1 1/2" square

Sewing Instructions: Use a 1/4" seam allowance unless otherwise instructed.

Create the Pumpkin Shape 

Using your preferred marking tool (I just used a pencil), draw a diagonal line on the back of four of the 1 1/2" squares of background fabric from corner to corner.Halloween Craft - Pumpkin Mark Corners Position one 1 1/2" square on each corner of the pumpkin fabric with the right sides together.  Refer to the following photo for the placement of the stitching lines.Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Align Corners

Sew along the marked diagonal line of each square. Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Sew on Line

After sewing the four square to the pumpkin fabric, trim the excess fabric 1/4" from the sewing line.  When you trim the corners, the block should look like this: Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Pumpkin Corners Trimmed
Unfold the corner and gently press each corner to the outside of the block creating a pumpkin shape.

Making Stem and Leaf Strip

First, let's make the pumpkin leaf, we will be making a half-square triangle section.  With the right sides together, place the last 1 1/2" square of background fabric and the 1 1/2" square of leaf fabric on top of each other, right sides together, aligning all the edges.Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Half Square Triangle Mark Line

With a marking tool, draw a diagonal line on the back of the lighter fabric from corner to corner.  At the sewing machine, sew along the diagonal line.  Trim away excess fabric 1/4" from the stitching line.   Open and press seam to one side.Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Half Square Triangle Block

Sewing Leaf and Stem Strip Together

Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Stem SectionsTo sew the stem strip piece, line up the pieces as follows (refer to the above photo):

2 1/4" x 1 1/2" background fabric, stem fabric, leaf piece, 1 1/4" x 1 1/2" background fabric.

Sew the pieces together.  Press the seams all in one direction. Then, sew this piece to the top of the pumpkin and press the seam toward the pumpkin shape. Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Add Stem Section

Looking cute. Time to finish the block by adding borders. Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Finished Pumpkin

Border Assembly

Sew the two 1 1/2" x 5 1/2" background fabric strips onto the sides of the pumpkin.  Press the seam toward the background fabric.Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Finished Pumpkin Block Borders

Then, sew the two longer background fabric strips, the 1 1/2" x 6 12" strips to the top and bottom of the pumpkin.  Again, press the seams toward the background fabric.

The pumpkin block is finished.Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Finished Pumpkin Block Besides a mug rug, this pumpkin block can be incorporated into a wall hanging or table runner.  It can be made into a potholder or coaster.

assembling rug mug top

Once the pumpkin block is finished you need to find a piece of fabric that compliments the pumpkin block. In addition, you will need backing and batting fabric. Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Blocks

Cutting Fabric

To finish the mug rug, cut: 

Complimentary Fabric
1 - 6 1/2" x 7 1/2"

Backing Fabric
1 - 9 1/2" x 15"

Batting Fabric
1 - 9 1/2" x 15"

Machine Quilting Mug Rug

Before sewing the complimentary piece to the pumpkin block,  you will be machine quilting the complimentary piece to the batting and backing fabric.

To do this, we will begin to make a quilt sandwich.  Don't know what a quilt sandwich is?  A quilt sandwich is made up of the quilt top, batting and backing.  

Place the backing fabric on a flat surface with the right side facing down.  Put the batting fabric on top of the backing.Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Backing & Batting

Center the pumpkin block and complementary fabric on top of the batting with right sides facing up.  Make sure you can see batting all the way around the pieces. Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Blocks on Batting

Remove the pumpkin block and machine quilt the complimentary fabric to the batting and backing.  You can also hand quilt if you prefer.

If you're not sure how to machine quilt, we have lots of useful information and videos on our machine quilting page

Before you begin to machine quilt, think about what color thread will show on the top and back of the quilt.  You may want to use two different thread colors - one for the top and one for the backing.  Please think about this before quilting. 

After machine quilting this first piece, put the pumpkin block on top of the first piece (pretty sides together) aligning the raw edges and machine sew the two pieces together.  

Once the two pieces are sewn together, unfold the pumpkin block, press it and machine quilt the pumpkin block however you wish.  I simply use a straight stitch to outline about a 1/4" around the pumpkin. Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Quilting Close Up

To hold entire mug rug down to the backing and batting, machine baste 1/8" around the perimeter of it.

Below is a picture of the finished quilted piece so far.Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Blocks Quilted

Trim Mug Rug

The easiest way to trim the excess batting and backing is to use a rotary cutter and ruler.  Of course, it can also be trimmed with a scissor.Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Trim Quilted Block

Line up the ruler with the edge of the mug rug and use the rotary cutter to cut away the excess fabric.  Do this on all four sides.Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Quilted & Trimmed

binding the mug rug

To finish the raw edges of the mug rug, you will use binding. I recommend double fold binding.  It should be about 44" - 46" long. Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - with binding

To make the double fold binding I cut fabrics strips 2 1/2" wide, sewed them together, then folded and pressed them in half.  If you need a tutorial on how to make double fold binding, we have a wonderful tutorial here

There are various methods to attach the binding to the project, some a done entire with a sewing machine and others are done by machine and hand sewing.  I am not going to explain attaching binding here because we have various tutorials which can be found on our binding page.

Viola! My finished pumpkin mug rug.

Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Complete There is a look at the back of the finished mug rug. Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - Complete Back

Such a fun decoration for Halloween and Thanksgiving. Besides being perfect for a quick snack and beverage, it can also be used on a nightstand or table to protect from water rings. And, it makes for a great, last-minute quick gift.

Pumpkin Mug Rug Tutorial - FinishedWe hope you enjoyed our mug rug tutorial and decide to make some for yourself or as a gift.  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

If you have absolutely no time to make an autumn mug rug, Etsy has many finished pumpkin mug rugs. Check them out!

Happy Quilting!
Chris and Annette


If you have any questions about this project, contact us through the YouTube Video comments or our Contact Us page. We respond to questions in e-mails and YouTube comments regularly.

A few popular fall and Halloween craft ideas

Trick-or-Treat Bag Trick or Treat Bag - In a few hours, sew up a lined bag for all those candy treats.

Fall Fabric Wreath Fall Fabric Wreath - This fabric wreath idea is super easy to make!

Cute As A Button Pumpkin Cute As A Button Pumpkin - Decorate a fake pumpkin with buttons.

Candy Corn Fabric Banner DIY Candy Corn Fabric Banner - Sweet as candy, this candy corn banner is a pretty addition to your Halloween decorations.

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