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Dowel Mug Holder

Cut and glue dowels to make a rack for your favorite mugs.

Dowel mug holder

Project Overview

Skill Level


Estimated Time

1 day

Estimated Cost


Tools & Materials


  • Miter saw, table saw, or handsaw
  • Drill with 1/16-in bit
  • Sander; 120-grit and 180-grit sandpaper
  • Screwdriver
  • Wood glue
  • Super glue
  • Painter’s tape


  • 2-in dowel, #43934
  • 1-1/4-in dowel, #19414
  • 2 - 1-1/4-in white cup hooks, packs of 2, #58442
  • Small D-ring hangers, #264577
  • Valspar clear satin spray finish

Items may be Special Order in some stores. Product costs, availability, and item numbers may vary online or by market. Paint colors may vary slightly from those shown. Availability varies by market for lumber species and sizes.

Missing anything? Shop Online


Step 1

From both the 2-inch and 1-1/4-inch dowels, cut 14 pieces each 2 inches long. Sand the ends smooth.

Good to Know

For a miter saw or table saw, attach a stop block 2 inches from the blade to achieve consistent dowel lengths, regardless of the diameter.

Step 2

Gluing dowels together

Use a few drops of super glue to attach a small dowel to a large one. After that dries, add a small bead of wood glue along one side to reinforce the connection. You can use painter’s tape to hold the pieces together while the glue dries. Continue joining pairs of large and small dowels.

Good to Know

When connecting the small and large dowels, lay the glued dowels on a flat surface to keep them parallel as the glue dries. If necessary, tape the dowels together while the super glue dries.

Step 3

Begin combining the pairs of dowels, keeping the visible glue joints hidden toward the inside. Then glue the clusters of dowels together to form an oblong shape. Place at least two of the larger dowels toward the top at opposite ends. For the outside pieces, use wood glue where it can be hidden and tape the final pieces together.

Step 4

Sand the outside faces smooth and flush with each other. Wipe and vacuum the surfaces clean and apply two coats of spray finish.

Step 5

D-ring hangers on the back face of the mug rack

At the centers of two large dowels on opposite ends of the cluster and near the top, drill two 1/16-inch pilot holes and install a pair of D-ring hangers. The closer they are to the top, the less the rack will tip when loaded with mugs.

Step 6

At the centers of three large dowels spaced about evenly apart, drill 1/16-inch pilot holes and insert the cup hooks roughly level with the hangers on the back. Space them far enough apart to keep the mugs from bumping.

Step 7

Measure between the hangers on the back and drive two nails that distance apart for hanging the holder on a wall.