Paper Tea Cups #1

Paper Tea Cup 1

I’ve been messing around with paper. I’m not sure exactly why I decided to make paper tea cups, but inspiration hit over the holidays and I couldn’t find one online. Hence the gauntlet was thrown down! I had to make one. It took me a lot longer than I anticipated. But I’m ecstatic with the results! This is by far and away my favourite template/ tutorial so far. AND I’ve got another version of it almost ready to upload next week.

These would be perfect as use for cupcakes, biscuits, little presents, used as gift boxes or just as gorgeous packaging. Paint them, embroider them, bedazzle them… The options are endless! I created a lid template so it becomes a very usable gift box but I had a lightening bolt moment last night and I’m now sure I’ve worked out how to make a lid that sits inside the cup so that the pretty outer lines of the tea cup aren’t ruined. I’ll include it with the other version of the tea cup that I’ll upload next week.


Paper Tea Cup 1

To create this project you’ll need an A4 piece of card at least 160gsm in weight (that’s what I used). I used my Graphtec plotter cutter to create this project, but you could with a little time, use an x-acto knife to cut it out. I used a very strong and quick drying gel adhesive (think superglue strong) that allowed me to put it together quickly and accurately. But it is also very unforgiving and I did stick my fingers to the first cup a couple of times! If you’re a little concerned you could easily use small pieces of double sided tape or another preferred adhesive.


Paper Tea Cup 1

The handle, by far the most fussy part, is created by using the three pieces above.


Paper Tea Cup 1

Fold along the score lines on the long strip.


Paper Tea Cup 1

Fold along the score lines on each of the handle sides.


Paper Tea Cup 1

Then glue the tabs on one side of the handle strip to the inside of a handle side, bending the strip so that it aligns with the outer edge of the handle side. Don’t panic about a little bit of glue being seen on the inside at this point, you won’t be able to see it on the finished product.


Paper Tea Cup 1

To glue the other side on, fold the tabs on the unglued side of the middle strip so that they’re at 90 degrees and apply adhesive to the outside. Align the other handle side with the tabs, you may need to use a small pencil or skewer to get inside the handle and align the tabs up neatly.


Paper Tea Cup 1

To complete your handle just make sure that the tabs on each of the handle sides are folded in. It’s these tabs that you glue to the cup bowl.


Paper Tea Cup 1

Put aside the handle and take the two large circular windmill pieces. Fold along the score lines and overlay the two pieces as shown. I’ve marked a small circle at the centre of each of the pieces to help align them if you need. Don’t glue the pieces together in the centre! If it’s slightly off your whole teacup will be a bit twisted. If you’re worried, temporarily place a pin through the centre circles and use them to align the pieces.


Paper Tea Cup 1

Glue the first centre tab on the side of each windmill arm to its adjacent windmill arm (as shown above). Make sure that the edge of each arm is aligned with the score line on its sister piece. Doing the centre pieces first makes sure that your tea cup bowl doesn’t twist.


Paper Tea Cup 1

At this point you continue to glue the arms together up to the top edge of the teacup bowl.


Paper Tea Cup 1

This is the view of the bottom of your tea cup bowl when it’s complete.


Paper Tea Cup 1

Don’t panic if your tops don’t align perfectly. Just trim them off neatly with scissors when you’re finished.


Paper Tea Cup 1

To put the tea cup base together, take the two small windmill pieces and put them together in exactly the same manner as the tea cup bowl.


Paper Tea Cup 1

The final step requires glueing the tea cup base to the tea cup bowl, aligning with the centre circles to do so accurately. And then glueing the handle to your tea cup in your preferred location. The base of the tea cup handle doesn’t glue on in it’s entirety as I was unable to replicate the angle perfectly and each cup can be slightly different. I could have rectified it but I really like how it sits out a little and so looks more like a ‘real’ cup.


Paper Tea Cup 1

And here’s the final product! What do you think?


Paper Tea Cup 1

I lined the cups with small paper doilies and made some cute gluten-free shortbread tea bags to put in them. The recipe can be found here.


Paper Tea Cup 1

For the lid, cut out the two pieces and after folding along the score line, glue the tabs on the long strip to the inside of the lid top, aligning with the outside of the circle. It’s really quite quick and easy.


Paper Tea Cup 1


Update: I’ve created a much prettier lid for this cup template. You can find it here.

Update #2: Well over 40,000 people have downloaded this template in the past 4 years! But recently, it appears a handful are having issues with downloading it.

To download the templates, you need to click on the ‘Download’ text below. This will download a .ZIP file containing the PDF files you require. You need to ‘unzip’ this file- this is usually done automatically on your computer by double clicking on it.

The PDF files the .ZIP contains are locked, and need to be opened with Adobe Acrobat Reader (free download here). If you try to open the file with other software it will often show up as locked, or will show all the layers overlapping.

I hope you have fun putting it together. I’ve loved receiving all your photos, emails, and messages showing me your gorgeous creations!





  • Ana Beatriz Oliveira says:

    Hi, great job! I’m doing a school project and I wanted to open this on photoshop so I can paint with different colors, but says that needs a password, could you tell me please?

    • next to nicx says:

      Glad you like it!
      I’m sorry but this template is shared only for printing via a locked PDF.
      Please read my terms and conditions for more information.

      • Barbara says:

        Hi there,
        I was looking for you .pdf for your paper plate template and couldn’t find it. And of course I would agree to the terms and conditions 🙂

        Just let me know where to look for the .pdf.

        Thanking you,

      • vin says:

        this template is broken for the last few people who have tried it, just add the image to this photo set to make it simple for everyone

        • next to nicx says:

          Excuse me? I find the tone of your message exceedingly rude.
          The link/ template isn’t broken, it’s a .zip file that is downloaded to your desktop when you click the download button. This needs to be opened, and inside is the two PDF files required to make this tutorial.

    • Laura yule says:

      Hi can u send me the template for tea cup my son school is doing alice in wonderland as part of a musical group and these would b fantastic thank you

    • Julie Guelfi says:

      Feeling a bit frustrated as I clicked on download at the bottom the page and all I get is a blank page. I have tried heaps of times & nothing. I have looked at your terms & conditions and don’t have a problem with any of it as it’s just an activity to do with my grand daughter. Do you have any suggestions?

      • next to nicx says:

        Hi Julie,
        I’ve checked it all from my end and it seems to be working fine. It’s a .zip file that needs to be downloaded from Dropbox to your computer and clicked on to open. It contains the printable .PDF files you’ll need to create the project.
        I hope you have a wonderful time making it with your granddaughter!

    • Patricia Freitas says:

      Hi dear I don’t know if you speaks Portuguese because your name sounds like that, but anyway, I transformed your file in svg so I can use on my brother scan’n’cut machine and is perfect. I did my first tea cup (so proud of myself) i have some problems at the time to glue the cup but I figure out another way and make me happy. thank you for share this templates I will make a tea party bridal shower for a friend and will make this tea cup for decorate the table of gifts.

  • LIZ says:

    Is the template printable?

    • next to nicx says:

      Absolutely. Just download the PDF and print it off! 🙂

      • Elizabeth says:

        I have read your terms and conditions and could not find anywhere to click saying I accept them so I could print the pdf form of the tea cups. I am making them as a decoration for a school dance next month. Can you assist me in how to accept the terms or how to get a copy of the pdf?

        Thank you!

        • next to nicx says:

          Hi Elizabeth,
          By downloading the template you agree to the terms and conditions. I currently don’t have them in a PDF, you could do a print screen if you need a physical copy?
          Have fun decorating your dance!

  • Diane Caust says:

    I love ur cups….wonderful.
    I,like u, was thinking about paper n cups but was unable to come up with anything.
    Thanx so much for sharing

  • Chong says:

    Hi. I love your paper cup. I was wondering if you have any template for the plate.

  • Virginia Diaz says:

    I’m using this template as part of a shadow box piece for my dad and his new wife. It’s just perfect. Thank you!

  • jessy says:

    Hello! What a talent 🙂 I would like to know if there is a way to change the colors? I would love to use these tea cups for a bridal shower. Thank you

  • Marian says:

    Do you by any chance have this in a cut file? Like an SVG so I can use my cricut to cut it?

  • Anna says:

    Hi, I love this tea cup, I am new to this site, found it through someone posting this in Pinterest, where do I find/or purchase the template for this teacup & the two different versions of lid, I also like the other teacup you have designed, so would be interested in the template for that as well.

    • next to nicx says:

      Hi Anna, I’m so glad you like the templates! They’re free downloads so you just have to click on the ‘download’ link at the bottom of the post. Have fun with it! Cheers Nicx

  • Michele says:

    Thank you for taking the time to post this. I am having a Mad Hatter wedding reception and these will be perfect for achieving a topsy-turvy look without worrying about breaking cups!

  • Dhitaree says:

    Hello there! great design and pattern. I love your work. Please let me know how to download this pattern to dropbox. When I click download, it always goes to .zip file and I cannot extract it.

  • Jordi says:

    Thank you so much for doing this tutorial and making this template available–these teacups are fantastic! Cheers!

  • Ed Aquino says:

    Hi, thank you for these! Perfect for our tea party!
    But the Tea-Cup-Gift-Box-Lid-Template.pdf I’ve downloaded seems to overlap wth the Tea-Cup-Template.pdf, thanks!

  • Natalia Cantwell says:

    Thank you for the template.
    I think the confusion among folks here about how to download your files. It took me a while to figure out that I need to click on sign “Download” after reading comments below. Maybe you can clear instructions in the post above…
    but anyway, I’ll give it a try. Thank you so very much.

  • doreen gucciardo says:

    Love the tea cups I will be reading Alice in Wonderland to my afterschool children. We then will be making crafts from the story> Would it be ok to make your amazing cup as one of my art projects? Thank you in advance. You are incredibly talented.

  • Diana Sandberg says:


    What a great design! Very creative. Thank you for providing the templates and directions. I will be making a tea-themed costume for a Steampunk event and would love to use the teacup design for a fascinator. Is it okay to scale the teacup up a little in size if it doesn’t look right with the size of my base; say 25-50%?

    I’m sure people will ask where I got the design. How do you prefer it to be attributed–using the name Nicx, or Next to Nicx or the address of your website?

    • next to nicx says:

      Hi Diana,
      Sure scale it as you need! 🙂 I’d love to see the finished result.
      Please attribute using the Next to Nicx and/ or the website address.
      Have a great time at your event!

  • maj says:

    Thank you so much, this is soooo cute.

  • Kristy C. says:

    Hi Nicx,

    Thanks for your templates , they a really nice &easily to do ^^ The cup is so lovely^^


  • Vera says:

    Thank you! 🙂

  • Chandana says:

    Hi, thank you for doing this , I’m glad to see this paper cup because I got an idea to a cafe modal with this ..

  • Evelyn Radillo says:

    Love your pdf template. Thank you so much. I’m helping with a bridal shower that has a Tea Party theme so these will be perfect for the centerpieces. I’m so excited to use it!

  • yerin woo says:

    Hello! I’m korea librarian. In our library, the December book subject is tea.I want to decorate the book section using your design. Please allow it to be used.

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