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Posted by Liz Glissmeyer on 2nd Nov 2014

Understanding the Life and Making Of A Copper Mug - Alchemade Blog

Look down at the copper mug in your right hand. I’m assuming you all are using your copper mug all day, every day, like we are, because we can’t think of a reason not to. But have you ever thought about where that beautiful, shiny drinking vessel came from? Each of our mugs is handmade, hand polished, and hand packaged just for you. In honor of those hands that do the work, and in honor of the work of art in our hand right now, we want to share the story behind the mug.

Our journey starts in northern India, which has a reputation for quality metal handicrafts that dates back to roughly 3000 B.C. In the Indus Valley, handicrafts were first made for practical, everyday uses, but later evolved into ornate works of art used as decorations and at ceremonies. Today, these traditions are still alive all over India, and different regions have developed different expertise in metals, clays, and bamboo art


In one specific region of Northern India, pieces and scraps of pure copper are gathered, ready to be melted down in a large furnace. Once the copper reaches a certain temperature, it is carefully handled, and poured into cylindrical molds. 


These molds allow for manageable sized portions of pure copper to be flattened into long sheets of nearly-molten copper. Long copper sheet are formed, measured and cut into circles. These circle sheets are pressed and pulled to get the right mug depth, whether it’s a 12 ounce, 14 ounce, or 16 ounce mug being made.

After the body is made, the handle is welded to the cup. Something that sets our mugs apart from other major manufacturers is that our handles are seamlessly attached to the body of the mug, making the mug more hygienic as it is washed and cleaned. Many other handles are attached with rivets that leave room for bacteria growth if not sterilized properly. Once the handles are welded on, the mugs are geared up for a final hand polishing. If you look closely at your mugs, you can see tiny grooves where someone carefully buffed and shined that individual mug!

All of our mugs are coated in a food and drink safe lacquer that preserves the luster and helps protect against tarnish. Each mug is dipped, dried, and run through one last drying oven. All of our mugs are hand wrapped, packaged, and sent to you.

In the name of ancient Indian handicrafts, we want to raise our Mules to the people behind the mugs – our associates and friends in far corners of the world who make our Moscow Mule experiences what they are. Our founder has traveled to meet with the people behind the mugs, dined with their families, and thanked them personally. We have seen the process, and the care that goes into every order of Alchemade copper mugs. So cheers to the mug-makers and the industry-shakers!