DIY Mugs

So, like everyone else, I’ve been seeing all these pins floating around about using Sharpie markers to make your own design on glass or ceramic – just draw your design, bake it in the oven, and you’re done!  Seemed too good to be true, plus I had no idea what to draw, so I put this idea on the back burner.

Then, I came across this mug, and knew I had to make one to send to Radar.  I know he’ll love it!  It’s inappropriate without outwardly swearing, plus the fox is his squadron’s mascot.  So I started to do some digging about the magic of Sharpies and the oven.  Turns out, the key is oil-based paints, as I learned here.  Thanks to Ruth, I bought an orange DecoArt glass paint marker on Amazon (only 1 color, because it’s a little pricey for 1 marker!), and then waited 2 days for it to come in the mail.  When did I get so spoiled by Amazon Prime that even 2 days is unbearable now??  I also bought a couple plain white mugs at Walmart while I waited.

At this point, I just followed the directions on the pen packaging (which I will definitely hold onto for future reference).  I cleaned off the mug with alcohol.  Then I used a pencil to sketch my design.  It doesn’t show up all that well, so I didn’t take a picture, but it was enough to guide me with the paint.  Also, it just rubs off if you make a mistake, so it’s super easy.  I found a simple fox that I could actually draw on Google images.  Once my design was drawn in pencil, I carefully and nervously traced it and colored in with the paint pen.  It actually turned out pretty well!

The instructions for the paint pens are as follows:

Not for direct contact with food.  Clean surface with alcohol before applying.  Shake well.  To activate press down on tip until color appears.  Allow painted project to dry 4 hours.  Bake 30 min at 325F in a non-preheated oven for durable, dishwasher-safe finish.  Allow project to cool with oven door open.

I wanted to put a design inside the cup, but didn’t because of the warning about food contact.  I also had to press really hard for a long time before the color came down, but once it did, it flowed easily.  I drew my fox at 4 pm, so it was ready to go in the oven right after I put the kids to bed at 8.  I also drew on the bottom (just my signature and the year), so when I put it in the oven (remember, it has to be cool!), I just put it on the wire rack in the center so the bottom would also “cook.”  To cool it, I didn’t want the mug to crack from a fast temperature change, so I just cracked the oven door open about 3 inches (another reason it was better to do it after the kids went to bed) and let it cool slowly for a couple hours.

I have to say, I’m pretty impressed with the results!  I think my drawing was pretty good, and the paint sure seems durable!  I haven’t tested the dishwasher safety (that’s the right verbage, right?), but Radar doesn’t have a dishwasher over there so it’s a moot point.


Not bad, huh?

Now that I’ve had a taste of customizing glass and ceramic, I want to do more!  I smell fun, one-of-a-kind Christmas presents!


One thought on “DIY Mugs

  1. Pingback: Care Package Tips | Project Mama

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