DIY To Try – Hand Painted Mugs


Do you love to decorate cookies for the holidays?  Well, I have a better idea…decorate cups instead of cookies!  Or in this case, coffee mugs!  They last longer and are fun, easy and make perfect handmade gifts for the holidays!

Your mugs don’t need to be holiday themed, you can personalize them with anything you wish as the steps are still the same.  However I stuck with a reindeer theme as I love anything Christmas related, and as I am currently selling these reindeer themed mugs on my Etsy page!  They also make great hostess gifts for holiday parties!

Supplies:  You can use any type of porcelain mugs.  Since I knew I would be making plenty to sell and give as gifts, I decided to buy in bulk.  Check out this great deal I got from Bed Bath & Beyond!

12 mugs for $15


whitecups1You will also need porcelain outliners, paints and/or markers.  And a small craft brush.  I got my supplies from Blick, you can find them here.  I recommend using the outliners and paints.  I got the most use out of the black (Anthracite) outliner, and then the porcelain 150 paints.  I used the marker the least as I found I had to keep shaking and pressing down hard to make it work, it would probably work best for simple designs or lettering (but in that case why not just use a Sharpie).

suppliessupplies2Next, make sure your mug is clean and dry! You don’t want any grease or dust on your coffee mugs, so to be sure try wiping them down with rubbing alcohol and drying them off with a clean towel.

Now it is time for the fun part!

I decided to draw out a reindeer using my porcelain marker, I free-handed all of the reindeer, but looked online at google images as a refresher.  You could also make your own stencils by simply drawing on white paper and cutting them out.

reindeeroutline1I then went in and colored the body silver with the paint, and the antlers gold with the outliner (which is thicker).  I also added a little gold dot for the nose.  I then went back and outlined the whole deer with my black outliner.

silver2I was hooked.  I wanted to do more.  For the next deer, I just switched the gold and silver on the body so that they could be a pair.


silverandgold2Since I liked the look of the black deer outline, I decided to keep the next pair simple.  I just drew the reindeer outline with my black outliner and used a red dot for the nose!  I added the red dot with a q tip to get a good circle!

rednoseI made a pair of these as well!  As you can tell, they were free-handed so they don’t match perfectly, but that is just a sign that they are handmade!


Lastly, I decided to get a little punny, with a couple of reindeer.

The front:


The Back:


Wouldn’t these be cute for a newly married couple, or any married couple for Christmas?

You are almost done! Well, if you can step away from decorating, you will need to let the mugs air dry for 24 hours.  Then Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 35 minutes.  Then leave in the oven to cool back to room temperature before removing.

The best part – they are now dishwasher safe!  Although I am still a little cautious so I will most likely be hand washing mine just to be safe.

The possibilities with hand painted mugs are endless, and I can’t wait to make more!

*If you are interested in purchasing any of the above mugs, or requesting a custom made one, head over to my Twine & Vines Etsy shop by clicking Here.

** If you try this project I would love to see your work! Please share your pics with me at or follow twineandvinesblog on Instagram and use #diytwineandvines



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