18 Clever Ways To Repurpose Old Teacups Around The House

According to data from Statista, people across the world are expected to drink a whopping 7.27 billion kilograms of tea annually by 2025. This warm and comforting beverage is what billions of people enjoy each morning, as a midday pick-me-up, or before they drift off to sleep. With that being said, however, it seems the classic teacup hasn't exactly reached the same level of popularity. Teacups are small and often fragile, so it's not uncommon for people to opt for larger and sturdier mugs in their daily routines. While the fancy tea set might be brought out for special occasions, it more than likely spends most of its time collecting dust in the china cabinet.

If you find yourself in this situation and want to give your fancy teacups a chance to shine, consider upcycling them into something you'll see and use every day. Teacups have a super simple design and their ability to hold liquid means they're the perfect fit for a wide array of creative projects. Even if you don't have a tea set on hand that's collecting dust, these fancy little cups are incredibly easy to find at vintage and thrift stores for cheap, making them the perfect starting point for a DIY project if you're feeling the urge to get creative.

1. Bird feeder

Bird feeders are easy to make out of just about anything, but this teacup idea is one of the most fun and whimsical out there. All you need is a teacup, a saucer, some string, and an adhesive. Turn your teacup on its side with the handle facing upwards, then attach it to the saucer with your adhesive of choice. Once it's dry, attach your string to the handle of the teacup to hang it from a branch. After you fill the cup (and likely some of the saucer, too) up with birdseed, birds can fly up and rest on the rim of the saucer to eat.

2. Candle vessel

Making your own soy candles is surprisingly easy, so much so that finding appropriate vessels for your creations is oftentimes the hardest part. If you're tired of filling plain jars with wax, try thinking outside the box and making a teacup candle. Teacups are already meant to withstand high heat, so there's a low risk of cracking as you fill the teacup and eventually burn your creation, and the handle on the side can make it easy for you to move the candle from place to place, even when it's still hot. Add on the fact that it's absolutely adorable, and you have a winning DIY idea.

3. Succulent garden

Succulent gardens are a low-maintenance way to bring some interesting greenery and freshness to your home décor. Once you start adding to your collection of plants, however, it can be hard to find planters that are the perfect fit for a collection of different succulents. To give yourself more freedom, consider potting your succulents in individual teacups, then displaying them together. Teacups are small and shallow, making them a great choice for succulent planters, and putting your succulents in several tiny pots instead of one large one can make it easier add on new plants and take away old ones that might not be faring so well.

4. Hanging planter

Hanging planters are a great choice for homes that don't have a ton of floor space or families that need to keep plants away from pets, and this mini teacup hanging planter is an adorable alternative to a classic. All you need is your teacup, soil, macrame cording, and, of course, your plant of choice. There are plenty of different tutorials online to make your own macrame hanging planter, like this DIY adjustable plant hanger, so choose the one that works best for your space and place your plant-filled teacup in the cradle of string once you're done tying.

5. Candle holder

If you like the idea of a teacup candle but don't want to have to melt down the wax to make your own, consider making a teacup candleholder instead. The teacup is perfect for catching wax drips and can allow you to carry your candle from room to room so you can supervise it while it burns. To make sure your candle stays stable in the teacup, glue a piece in the bottom that can hold onto the base of a candle. This can be a piece of scrap material or even a tiny holder that's custom-made out of clay.

6. Wreath

This idea might be a bit eccentric for most, but if you want to really amp up your décor, try your hand at making a teacup wreath. This project requires quite a bit of adhesive and patience, but the final result is something truly unique. If you want to go all out, cover the entire wreath base with saucers before attaching your teacups on top. You could also, however, tone it down a bit and add teacups onto a more traditional floral or greenery wreath, helping to give off that whimsical "Alice in Wonderland" tea party-esque look without being quite as fragile.

7. Pin cushion

Crafting while enjoying a cup of tea is one of life's simple pleasures, so why not combine those two things into one adorable package? With some simple sewing, you can easily turn a teacup into a base for a pin cushion. Grab some scrap fabric that matches your teacup, stuff it with your material of choice, then form it into a cushion and add a couple of stitches to keep it secure. From there, glue the cushion into your teacup with the sewn side down, and add on a bit of trim around the edge of the cup if it needs some more polish.

8. Framed wall planter

Hanging planters are great space-savers, but if you're looking for a different alternative that still keeps your plants off the floor or the shelf, consider a wall planter. These are essentially sconces, but instead of a light, you have a lovely little pop of greenery. To make your own, grab a frame and an old teacup. The frame and backing can look however you want, but it's important to ensure they can handle the occasional splash of water if you're going to use this planter for real plants. Attach a teacup in the frame and you have a lovely little vessel to display a small plant.

9. Decorative wine glass

If you're not using your teacups for tea, why not transform them into cups for a different beverage entirely? By adding on a stem, you can transform a teacup into a unique, one-of-a-kind wine glass. Your stem can be made of just about anything you can find that's stable enough, but a candlestick holder is a great option that you likely already have at home or can find for cheap at a secondhand store. Secure the two pieces together with a powerful adhesive and you're ready to give your teacups a second life holding a more evening-appropriate beverage.

10. Tiered tray

Tiered trays are great to hold onto just about anything from crafting supplies to candy, but if you're looking for a way to make your own that's a bit more interesting than the typical options on the market, consider building it out of an old teacup. With the addition of a vertical support, your teacup can be suspended over a saucer to create a two-level organizer. Use this tiered tray to help keep track of small items that you might find on your desk, at your crafting station, or around the house — they'll be easier to find, and you'll be able to cut down on miscellaneous clutter.

11. Vase

Most vases are at least slightly taller than the average teacup, but if you're working with some flowers with short stems or you're willing to trim them down, a teacup can make an adorable substitute for a vase. It's certainly possible to finesse your flowers into place with a bit of trial and error, but if you find that they tend to slump over or fall, it can also help to create a grid out of tape to secure the stems in place, just like this TikTok-approved hack. This arrangement can go just about anywhere, but it's perfect if you need some on-theme tea party décor.

12. Ceramic lampshade

Porcelain lampshades might not be quite as common as fabric ones nowadays, but this material seriously shines in the spotlight. For this DIY, you'll want teacups made of a relatively thin material, which are commonly found in higher-end tea sets. However, you could likely track one down at just about any price point secondhand. These aren't thick enough to fully block light, leaving you with the lovely glow of a traditional lampshade when you place a bulb inside. However, even if your cup is thicker, it can still make for a unique DIY lampshade that's the perfect addition to a light and whimsical home décor aesthetic.

13. Window wall décor

This DIY project is perfect for routine upcyclers because it combines two unused items into one beautiful final product. If you want to repurpose an old window and also have some old teacups lying around, consider making this interesting hanging display. This idea uses colored glass teacups, but you can modify just about every part of this project to better fit your taste and what items you have on hand. Glue down your teacups, add on some hooks, and then hang your display piece on a window or in a spot in the home where you get plenty of natural light for the best payoff.

14. Mosaic material

If your teacup is cracked or otherwise damaged, sometimes all you can do is break it down further. On the bright side, the small pieces don't have to go to waste. If you're feeling crafty, a broken teacup can make a fantastic mosaic material, whether you're making a tiny piece out of just the shards from the cup or combining it with other pieces of broken glass, pottery, and tile to create a large-scale piece of art. Making mosaics can seem a bit intimidating at first, but with the proper materials and techniques, you can create an item that's even prettier than the original teacup.

15. Napkin rings

This hack might take some specialized equipment, but if you're willing to put in the work, it can yield some particularly stunning results. There are several different ways to cut ceramic, but if you have access to a wet saw or even a snap cutter, consider trimming your teacups down into rings. These rings are often sold as bangles and can certainly bring a bit of interest to your outfit, but you can also use them to amp up your tablescape as napkin rings. Simply weave your napkins through the porcelain ring and you have the perfect tea party place setting decoration.

16. Hanging light

If you like the idea of a porcelain lampshade but don't have a table lamp that needs an upgrade, consider making a hanging light. This is essentially the same building process as the lamp, but instead of attaching the shade to a base, you thread a wire through it to keep everything together. This idea does require a bit of drilling, which can get difficult on porcelain as it's prone to cracking, but with the proper technique, you should be able to create a hole in the teacup and saucer that allows you to thread your wire through in just a few minutes.

17. Jewelry dish

One of the simplest ways to upcycle a teacup is to begin using it for something else. Without having to make any major changes, you can transform your existing cup into a lovely little jewelry dish, perfect to sit on your bathroom counter or on your bedside table. The teacup itself is perfect for holding onto necklaces and bracelets, the rim of the cup can store dangly earrings with fishhook backings, and the saucer is a fantastic resting place for rings and stud earrings that could easily get lost if they're just tossed on your countertops.

18. Curtain pullbacks

Curtain pullbacks are obviously meant to be functional first and foremost, but that doesn't mean that they can't be fun, too. This teacup curtain pullback idea is both utilitarian and interesting, the perfect combination if you're looking for a way to express your personal style in just about every corner of the home. Unfortunately, you do have to cut out the bottom of your teacup, which requires some specialized equipment. After sanding the rough edges so they don't catch on your fabric, all you have to do is feed the curtain through the teacup, then tie the teacup's handle to a wall hook with string.