Make Your Funky Mismatched Mug Collection The Star With These Kitchen Design Tips

The things we collect tell a story about who we are, where we've been, and what we love, so when they are lovingly displayed in your home, the space layers together your many tales to create a dynamic and exciting atmosphere entirely unique to you. As an interior designer and founder of an interior design company, I live and breathe small design details, as they can make or break the broader look and feel of a space. And as any designer will tell you, creating an environment where even the tiniest details feel important and cohesive brings the entire space a new level of sophistication, thoughtfulness, and unity. Collections, in particular, are a key component for a well-curated home. 

Collections come in many varieties and are as unique as the collectors themselves, so a major design tip is to showcase custom collections as a decorating statement for a truly custom look. If your particular cup of tea is a funky mismatched mug collection, for example, the key to allowing your cherished drinkware to really shine is to treat it as a piece of art in its own right. Present your mug collection in an aesthetically-pleasing, intentional way to lend style and playful personality to your kitchen, as well as guide the overall eclectic design vibe and styling for the kitchen as a whole.

Present your unique mug collection as a thoughtful work of art

First off, what does your quirky mug collection say about your design style? Showing off this type of funky, lighthearted assortment of treasures gives off the free-spirited vibes of bohemian or eclectic decor. This design style is focused on layering color, pattern, and texture to create visual interest with a joyful, collected feeling, full of character and depth. Therefore, your diverse assortment of fun, colorful mugs is the perfect collection to showcase as an art statement to bring a welcome offbeat charm to your kitchen. But how to best go about doing so in an elevated way?

Of the many creative ways to display all of your adorable mugs, I personally love artfully arranging them on an open shelf (with or without individual divider grids) or showcasing them in a beautiful glass door cabinet for a sophisticated, upscale presentation. Hooks holding mugs of too many different shapes and sizes can look a little sloppy and chaotic because they all hang differently. However, a collection of similarly shaped, similarly sized, colorful assorted mugs hung on hooks could give a whimsical cottage aesthetic when curated correctly. In general, a more streamlined and thoughtful presentation of your collection will allow it to become the star of your kitchen, reading as a piece of art to be enjoyed. By carrying and supporting this eclectic look throughout the rest of the space, the collection will feel in harmony with the rest of the kitchen design.

Leveling up your mug collection with elevated styling

How you style your mug collection, and therefore other areas of your kitchen, depends on the nature of your collection. For example, an assortment of colorful stoneware or pottery mugs already look cohesive as a set, as would mugs in the same series but in multiple patterns and colors. Therefore, more is necessary to achieve that maximalist bohemian aesthetic, so group together a large quality of mugs for maximum impact and wow factor. Pair this fabulous stoneware collection with imperfect handmade backsplash tile and other handcrafted accents (like hardware, other pottery, hand-woven decor accents, etc.) throughout your kitchen to give that bohemian artisan vibe throughout.

If your collection, when sitting unassumingly in a cabinet, looks more like a ragtag gathering of leftover drinkware of all kinds, consider editing your displayed items to embrace the few that look the most interesting together. This will let their charm truly shine, and you can rotate them out in small cohesive groups as desired. Try pairing these smaller collections with unique plates, pottery, other decorative kitchenware, books, or plants to create a beautifully styled vignette with a layered, eclectic design sensibility. Add vintage finds, quirky or antique hardware, fun art prints, and unexpected colorful finishes to the space to create a unique kitchen full of whimsy and wonder. Whatever story your collection says about you, carry that vibe into the rest of your kitchen design, to elevate your mug collection into a beloved and thoughtfully curated piece of art.