Top It Off!

Whether you consider it a décor decision gone awry or a hobby that got out of hand, the allure of this mug covered cabin is unmistakable.


Located at the end of a dirt and gravel road, this cabin in the woods is not the expectation for rural North Carolina.  Well, maybe anywhere.

While visiting a local flea market looking for antiques, Avery Sisk instead bought a box of 750 coffee mugs thinking he would hang them up for decoration.  His wife, Doris, was not too keen on the idea at first when he started hanging them on the porch.  She wasn’t sure why he would even want them – after all, her husband doesn’t even drink coffee. But being artists and collectors, one thing led to another and now 15 years later, their home is covered outside with coffee mugs. Doris says she’s gotten used to them now.  While most have been placed by the Sisks, visitors from around the globe who have heard about this unique home have also added to the collection.

Bring a mug, maybe even a nail, when you visit.  And of course, bring your Southern manners.  If the Sisks are on the porch, they will strike up a conversation and possibly invite you inside to see additional collections.

It wasn’t the Sisk’s intention to create a destination. But when you have cups and mugs hanging all over your house, fence, and railings, word is bound to get out. And the Sisk’s are happy to show off their collection.  Well, in the South when you say quirky and welcoming in the same breath, folks are bound to visit. 

Thousands of people visit each year.  That’s quite a substantial number for rural Caldwell County, nestled in the Appalachain mountains near Lenoir.  And it’s not just locals visiting.  With word of their collection spreading across social media, the Sisks have greeted folks from South Africa, Hawaii, Iceland and across the United States and Canada.    

 Take NC Route 90 NW out of the tiny community of Collettsville for roughly half a mile then turn left  onto Old Johns  River  Road.  Travel 2½ miles to a gravel road turn-off. Turn right onto the gravel road and follow to the end. There is no charge to visit, but donations are happily accepted.  

Many thanks to Joe Sledge for images and his book series, Did You See That?