How to repair or replace handle on a mug?

Chriss Grijak
by Chriss Grijak

I dropped a cherished mug in the sink this morning and the handle broke off into several pieces. Some of the pieces look like dust and I can’t fix it. My husband gave me this mug 15 years ago and he recently passed away so it’s important that I could fix this. Luckily, just the handle was damaged. Is there any way to repair this? Are there moldable glues to reconstruct a handle and then paint it?Thank you.

  6 answers
  • Joy Joy on Feb 22, 2019

    I have a mug that I turned into a pencil/tool mug for my sewing room that lost a handle. I still get to see it everyday and remember the giver.

    • Chriss Grijak Chriss Grijak on Feb 22, 2019

      Hi Joy,

      I think this might be the solution. A ceramics shop won’t even try to do the repairs. I’ll just have to sand down the remaining pieces and hope for the best!

  • Gathered In The Kitchen Gathered In The Kitchen on Feb 23, 2019

    I'm so sorry - if you have a local ceramics shop (think of like the wine and paint places) they may be able to craft a new one for you and then you could paint it and it be put in the kiln to dry. Best of luck!

  • Esther Esther on Feb 28, 2019

    I have repaired bone china cups,plates dolls etc with canned milk-this really works!

  • Vimarhonor Vimarhonor on Mar 01, 2019

    Hello, I have used a epoxy putty to repair many ceramics and pottery items and so much more.

    Not seeing a photo of your mug or handle its difficult to guess how small or skinny/ delicate the handle is.

    Could the handle attachment area be sanded down and painted to disguise the area? Have a handleless mug as an alternative?

    If you’re adventurous and love doing repairs and restoration try the epoxy putty. After attached Im not sure how strong it will be for structural holding a weighted mug tho.

    This clay like putty can be sculpted and fill defects. It does harden in a few minutes and will dry a gray color can be sanded or drilled and will needing painting unless its final gray color works for your repair.

    It's a two-part epoxy sticky-found at big box hardware stores in the plumbing department near the pvc purple glue. In a clear plastic red capped tube. I get mine at Lowes $6. Home Depots its version and JB Weld is another but more $ and smaller. Other smaller 2 part epoxy sticks options can also be found in the boat marine and wood repair shopping sections.

    You mix -press -then you can use mold and fill defects, scrape off excess (I use depleted gift card) and/or sand and paint. Cured putty is strong enough to drill through.

    Putty safely seals/waterproofs for plumbing boat repairs.... Ive used it for so many fixes to include exterior entry door frame wood rot repair, elliptical pedal repair, multiple arts and crafts repair of damaged pottery- wood -ceramics, plug up holes in planters, repair cracks in planters or make a new lip on the pottery planter. Ive repaired holes in a utility garage sink ( thanks previous HO) repaired a break in the top rim border of an elliptical peddle, repaired damages in a concrete statue, fixed a split wood disk on a wind chime, repaired a cracked putty knifehandle, replace broken edge of woodn candlestick, its a great defect filler. I have dozens of fixed puttied things here at my home.

    There is probably enough in the tube to make several handles- I would suggest practice working with this putty to get a feel for it before attempting your mug repair. It becomes warm at the time it’s starting to harden- something to be aware of. Im not sure how this repair would respond to a dishwasher cycle, handwashing might be suggested. Again holding a weighted mug might with a repaired handle would be cautionary. Alternatively— Could a repair could be made for cosmetic decoative mug display versus actual use?

    I hope this helps. Kindest regards Karen

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    • Vimarhonor Vimarhonor on Mar 06, 2019

      That’s awesome news thank you for the reply. That makes my day. Remember that puttys handy for a lot of other jobs! I just love fixing thrift store garage sale items with it.

      So pleased more than words can say —that you were sucessful in your repair adventure!

  • Pat Pat on Mar 01, 2019

    Pencil holder sounds good....when you see it you will remember your loved one. I did the same thing...broke the handle off a mug but used it as a vase for flowers for awhile and then later planted a small viney plant in it and set it on my window by the sink where I do dishes....reminds me of my loved one also.

  • Chriss Grijak Chriss Grijak on Mar 01, 2019

    So many lovely ideas from lovely people!