Designing the Perfect Cup

First of all, the handle has got to fit your hand. I can’t believe that this simple feature has been ignored for so long the handles on most coffee cup look like they were an annoying afterthought. Well, I have definitely put way too much thought into it as you can see. Yes, I was that creep staring at you in the coffee shop while you drank your coffee, trying to document the different ways you people hold your coffee cups. I also put rounded edges at the bottom of your cup so that nothing gets stuck down there. You can see it in the cutaway above.  The most important part of the puzzle is how it feels on your lips. I know most people never would even give that a thought but if you ever found that perfect lip feel, you know what I’m talking about. So these are a few of my ideas and I would love to hear any ideas you might have before I get this little dream machine made.

7 thoughts on “Designing the Perfect Cup

  1. Natha Tungwongsakul

    Agree with round edges on the bottom, we don’t want coffee stains down there.

  2. David Markowski

    Looks great! The handle is very interesting and seems like it would fit most hands perfectly.

    I have never really given thought to the lip of the mug but this one looks nice and as long as it doesn’t hold drops that dribble down on my shirt I’m all for it.

    You can definitely see the thought and consideration put into this mug.

  3. Kersch

    I figure the more fingers tou can get into a handle the better.- ever try to use a single tiger cup?! More fingers = more lifting grip, especially for older people.
    My favorite ceramic ale mug has a thick wall and is bevelled inward at the top to a thin lip – it allows for a broader resting area for your lower lip.

  4. Bork

    Looks rad! I’m a fan of the American diner style coffee mug with its chunky unbreakable construction and satisfying weight.

    The only thing I might add is that you’ve kept a symmetrical body which is common for ceramic mugs spun on a potters wheel. But because you’re planning on 3D printing it, you have an opportunity to do things that are challenging on a potters wheel like use asymmetrical forms or create shifts in the wall thickness for people like Dylan who enjoy sipping from a thinner lip.

  5. dylan

    for lip feel, i’d look towards classic teacups. the british put some time into designing their china, and my favorite mug has a very tapered, flared lip which allows for a good rate of liquid flow into my mouth and also feels good. i think teacups are designed to be as thin walled as possible partly in order to facilitate cooling of the tea at an acceptable rate relative to the rate of consumption. the ideal temperature for brewing coffee is not the ideal temperature for consumption, so i’d say the rate of temperature drop as the coffee sits in the cup should be correlated to the average rate of consumption, i.e. it should cool at a rate that makes it comfortable to consume for the largest possible percentage of the mug’s total volume. my intuitive guess would be to have a tapered thickness, where the flared lip that you drink from is the thinnest but towards the base it thickens to retain the heat of the last bit of coffee consumed.