DIY Simple Custom Painted Mugs for Teachers + More

If you’ve been wanting to try your hand at customizing dishes using the permanent Porcelaine paint markers (made popular by Martha Stewart), then here’s a fairly simple little project that you might enjoy: Custom Painted Mugs:

All you’ll need for this project is a light-colored oven-safe mug (it will usually say on the bottom of the mug)—I bought mine at Target for a few dollars. You’ll also need Pebeo Porcelaine 150 paint markers in assorted colors (fine or broad tip). You can either purchase the air-dry or bake-dry version (my directions are for the baked type). My pens were purchased at a local Michael’s Craft Store, so check your local craft store for availability.

After priming your pen (according to directions on the side of the pen) begin drawing your design on your mug. I decided to create something reminiscent of handwriting paper (graph paper would have been cute too), and it was super easy to draw (just lines and dashes). If you mess up you can quickly wash the design away with a bit of warm soapy water and start again. I purposely left my designs loose and kid-like—as that seemed to fit the whole “teacher gift” theme best (also because it’s hard to draw perfectly straight lines on a rounded surface). You can be as precise as you’d like. It may help to hold your mug upside down while you draw your design, or put your hand inside the mug to hold it and keep your fingers from smudging your design.

Of course your mug can look however you’d like. Simple designs/patterns will be easiest to achieve and the effect is still really nice. These would also make awesome Father’s Day gifts (kids can sign their own names or contribute to the design), graduation gifts, etc. On the teacher’s mug you could also have your child write the teacher’s name along the lines (I recommend drawing the lined-paper design, allowing it air dry for a few hours, and then handing it over to your kiddo to write on with a contrasting colored marker (like black).

Bake (or air dry) according to the directions on the side of your pen (they may be different than the ones I noted above in my illustration). The most important tip I discovered is that when cooking your mugs it is safest to allow them to heat up along with your oven (as opposed to putting the cold mug directly into a hot oven). Once the cooking time is over, turn off your oven, open the door and allow your mug to cool down with the oven until it is a comfortable temperature to handle. Fill with an assortment of goodies such as handmade sweets, gift cards, etc. and enjoy giving a gift that is one-of-a-kind. xo Ez

Looking for a few more gift ideas for teachers? Check out my related posts right here (includes free printables).