In December a young man came to the gallery looking for a mug for his tea-loving girlfriend. She preferred her tea on the cooler side and he thought a tall mug would be suitable for her. As a potter and tea aficionado, I have enjoyed tea in many different vessels and I can say that a tall mug actually keeps the beverage hotter longer than in a short, stout cup. I have tea on the mind more than ever now that I'm organizing a tea show at the Guild, so here's a guide to find the right cup for you.
At the office: A mug with a wide base, possibly thick for more stability. Consider getting one personalized with your name if you're worried someone else will take it.
For those on-the-go: A tall handle-less cup to fit in a cup holder. A lid and silicone sleeve will help. Bonus: if you frequent a certain chain coffee shop, bring your mug and say you want your second cup refill of the day... you might get a discount.
For hot tea that stays hot longer: A tall cup with a narrow opening, and thick walls to help insulate.
For hot tea on the cooler side: A shorter cup with a wider opening. Lightweight cups with thin walls help because they won't hold heat as long.
For relaxing on a cold day: A handle-less tea bowl to embrace in both hands, with thick insulating walls.
For a tea party: A handmade teapot in which you can steep tea for several people and pour into smaller teacups, preferably cups with character that would strike up a conversation.