DIY Hanging Pencil Cup Organizer

This coming weekend I will officially be moving to a new home for college!!! I am beyond excited for this transition and the new decorating possibilities it opens. But like all transitions, there are some downsides, mine being an itty bitty bathroom with no drawers and very limited cabinet space. Now, if you stay on this blog very long, you will notice that I am a bit of a neat freak and that sticking everything under the sink in baskets simply wasn’t going to be an option.

After scouring Pinterest, I decided some hanging storage would be the perfect solution. Then, when I found mesh pencil cups in my local Target dollar section, I knew I had a cute, easy DIY on my hands for organization in that tiny space.

You will need:
Wire mesh pencil cups
Metallic spray paint (I used this shade that we had left over from a previous project)
1 ½” wide suede cord
Needle and thread
Fabric scissors
Awl or leather punch
Small board or other surface to punch holes on
Push pins and/or nails

Step 1
Spray paint the pencil cups a color that compliments your space. I used a metallic shade because I felt it elevated the look of these particular cups, but if a pop of color would accent your space, that could also be lovely!

Step 2
Cut the suede cord 5” long and the width of one square in the mesh of your pencil cup.

Step 3
You will now use the awl to punch 2 small holes near one end of the suede cord, spaced evenly along its width. To do this, mark your holes with the tip of the awl for spacing. Place the cord on top of the board, position the awl, and hit the end of it with the hammer until it punches through the suede (about 10-12 strokes for me). About 1/8” above that, punch another row of 2 holes. The row of holes closest to the end of the cord will sit below one horizontal rung of the mesh, and the other row will be positioned just above the rung.

Step 4
Punch identical holes on the opposite end of the cord. You will want to fold your cord in half and line up the ends to make sure your holes match before punching them.

Step 5
Feed one end of the cord through a square in the mesh a rung or two down from the rim of the cup. Pull the cord through until the fold is directly below the rung in the mesh and the punched ends of the cord meet up above the cup. The ends will lay flat against one another as illustrated above. (Boy do I need a manicure…)

Step 6
Thread your needle and double over the thread, bringing the ends together before tying a knot. This will give you double thickness and added durability. You will also want to tie several knots on top of one another near the end of the thread so that it doesn’t pull all the way through the holes you made. Leave a long tail past the knot.

Step 7
You will now stitch the ends of the cord together to create a closed loop. Weave the thread through the set of holes closest to the ends of the suede cord, using the diagram above. (Solid lines are in front of the cord and dotted lines are behind it.) Snip the thread close to the needle, and make a square knot using the two threads of the tail you left in step 6. Your stitches should look the pictures above! (Or, ya know, do your own thing!)

Step 8
Rotate the cord through so your sewn-together ends are below the rung in the mesh. Directly above that rung, repeat the previous stitch through the upper set of holes. This time, the stitches which go around the outside of the suede cord will also go around the vertical rungs of the mesh on either side of your cord. This gives your cord side-to-side stability.

Step 9
Punch a single hole through both layers of the cord near the folded end (above the cup). This will be used to hang your pencil cup! You may need to punch the hole from one side then the other if the awl does not easily go through both layers.

You are now ready to hang your new organization tool! You can use either a push pin or small nail to hang it depending on what you will be storing. For stability, you can also insert a clear pushpin on the inside of the cup, through the mesh near the base, and into the wall. This will prevent the cup from tilting side-to-side on the nail when objects are placed inside. In addition, you could line the cup with a cute fabric if the holes in the mesh are causing you trouble.

I hope you enjoyed this quick tutorial for a little extra organization space! I created three of these hanging cups and find that they work excellently for makeup brushes, a toothbrush, and even some bathroom essentials like tweezers and nail clippers. You could also use this technique to hang larger storage, such as baskets or organizers with multiple pockets.

And if you have any suggestions for small bathroom organization, I would love to hear them! I am determined to overcome this tiny bathroom situation!

Stay lovely,


  1. This is great! I wanted to do something like this but with Mason jars back in Houston, but since I shared a bathroom with my brother I decided against it. I did however paint some cool mason jars for my room.

    1. I love storing knick-knacks in mason jars as well! I have four or so in my room that I need to embellish a little too. How did you paint yours?

    2. I think it was just with regular paint on the outside and sprayed some sort of sealer on it, and sand some of the edges. I have a picture of it. I will post it on my IG.

  2. These are really cute, great idea! x