15 Coffee Mug Designs to Brighten Your Day

Posted on April 17, 2018 | Updated on December 1, 2022

The typical designer puts in long hours — more than 40 hours a week — to create amazing designs. Unfortunately, clients don’t always realize how much work goes into those designs and weariness can easily set in. It is during those times that you have to find inspiration in the little parts of your day. So if you need a break from the madness of a typical designer’s day or you simply want to find inspiration in the little things, study coffee mug designs.

As an added bonus, these designs make a fun addition to your workday and are a useful tool to hold all your hot drinks.

1. I Flunked Anger Management

If you aren’t much of a morning person, this mug might make you laugh. The saying is “I flunked anger management,” and the mug itself looks as though someone crushed it in a fit of anger. Cracks are painted onto the surface of the mug.

2. Great Moustaches

This unique mug shows different styles of mustaches, and if you have a lip warmer of your own, then the mug might inspire you to try different mustache styles. However, you don’t need a mustache to enjoy this mug. Each ‘stache is numbered and an answer key on the bottom of the mug names the style, such as handlebars or push brooms.

3. You Got This!

Having a rough day at work? CreateAndShip’s coffee mug gives you a small pep talk, letting you know that you can get through the toughest of projects and come out on the other side. A cute dog in a cape adds some humor to your day.

4. Bad Dog Diner Mugs

This is actually a set of four mugs featuring a cartoon called Bad Dog. The dog does the opposite of whatever the command is including fetch, sit, stay and come. Each saying depicts a scene where the dog doesn’t do what the command states.

5. My World Without Coffee

This mug pays tribute to the person who can’t start their day without coffee. The words “my world without coffee” are displayed upside down to show what the world looks like until you have that first jolt of caffeine.

6. Awesome Things Will Happen Today

This mug combines inspiration and humor to get your day started right. It reads, “Awesome things will happen today if you choose not to be a miserable cow.” This to-the-point statement sets the tone for a day filled with humor and the right attitude. ClicheZero can also personalize this design.

7. We Can’t All Be Princesses

This mug by WillowAndOlive features black letters on a white background. A crown is at the top, and the words say, “We can’t all be princesses, someone has to clap when I go by.” If you’re feeling a little down, this mug reminds you that we’re all special, or at least that you are.

8. Calico Cat

Do you love cats, and in particular, calico cats? This mug is right up your alley, then. The mug features a pretty calico cat on the front. On the back of the mug is a poem that uses the letters in “calico” to start each line. Mugs are also available for rescue cats and Siamese cats.

9. At Any Moment

What better way to start the day than with a reminder about the power each of us has inside from Etsy designer TotallyLikeMe. This mug has a bird soaring across the top part of the mug. It then says, “At any moment you have the power to say ‘this is not how the story is going to end.’”

10. Tea-Rex

Sometimes a coffee mug isn’t for coffee but tea. This cute mug makes a play on words to create a “tea” rex mug and has the image of a cartoon dino sipping on a cup of tea hooked around his tail. Handmade by KerrisGaneson on Etsy.

11. Beautiful Peacock

True works of art can inspire you in your own designs. This beautiful peacock coffee mug has fine details and bright colors that make it truly unique. Every sip you take from this mug will inspire you and drive your own creative designs.

12. I Go Hiking

The mug above designed by SasquatThreads features Bigfoot hiking through the forest on the back and the saying “I go hiking because punching people is frowned upon” on the front. If you’re having a bad day, this coffee mug can offer a bit of humor to get you through.

13. Donut Worry Be Happy

TeideShop hand creates this ceramic mug with the saying “Donut worry be happy.” The play on words fits perfectly with that breakfast cup of coffee, but also serves as a reminder to not waste time worrying.

14. Eyelashes Mug

Looking for something feminine and unique to start your day? This eyelashes coffee cup by sweetwaterdecor proves that the simplest designs are often the best designs. Two eyelashes grace the top of the mug. As the person takes a sip, this creates a cute look as though the mug is also enjoying a drink of coffee.

15. Spirit Animal

This mug by RoseGoldRebel uses both an image and words to create a funny message. The words “spirit animal” work alongside an image of a sloth to make a statement about how the person feels first thing in the morning.

Coffee Mug Designs Inspire and Brighten

These coffee mug designs offer inspiration, encouragement and humor to help you start your day. As a designer, there are elements you can use to inspire your own designs. However, sometimes a mug is simply a mug, and each of the ones above also serves a functional purpose. The ability of the mug to brighten your outlook on life is just a bonus.

About The Author

Eleanor Hecks is the Editor-in-Chief of Designerly Magazine, an online publication dedicated to providing in-depth content from the design and marketing industries. When she's not designing or writing code, you can find her exploring the outdoors with her husband and dog in their RV, burning calories at a local Zumba class, or curled up with a good book with her cats Gem and Cali.

You can find more of Eleanor's work at www.eleanorhecks.com.

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