DIY Mugs for Dad – A Handmade Father’s Day Gift

Jun 2017

If your dad is as hard to buy for as my dad, this might be the perfect gift for him for Father’s Day. Well, either this or a copper sink, maybe a fireclay sink? Ok, maybe wait until he’s renovating his kitchen or bathroom. In the meantime, this method of creating a homemade gift for dad is super easy and super inexpensive.

Everyone’s dad enjoys a good mug. It’s been a staple Father’s Day gift for generations. Whether your dad pours coffee, tea, or whiskey into his mug, he enjoys nothing more than touting that he is the “world’s best dad” in front of all of his friends and work colleagues. 

We purchased all of these supplies for this DIY craft at a crafts store (like Michael’s or Jo Ann Fabrics) all for about 18 bucks. The designs, we created, but we’ve included PDFs of them here for you to download and apply to your own mug. But don’t be limited by these two examples; you can use this method to create designs of almost anything on your mug. You also don’t have to be limited to a mug; this technique works on plates, bowls, and more.

To help you with this project, we created a short video that walks you through the steps, and we’ve included the necessary items and detailed steps within this blog post.

What you need:

  • Plain white mugs
  • Graphite transfer paper
  • Oil-based sharpies (these come in lots of colors, including copper)
  • Scotch ape
  • Access to a printer

Steps to create your homemade mug for dad:

  • Clean the mugs well with rubbing alcohol 
  • Print your design on regular printer paper
  • Tape your design and the transfer paper to the mug, with the printed side of the paper facing outward and the black surface is facing toward the mug
  • Trace over the printed design with a pen
  • Remove the printed design + transfer paper and paint over the impression of your design on the mug
  • Bake for 30 min at 350 degrees. Let the oven preheat with the mugs in the oven. Do not wait for the oven to preheat before putting the tray in. If the mugs heat up too fast they can break. 

***To make sure the design stays permanent, hand wash only.


For tips and inspiration in regards to designing with copper and fireclay, check out the rest of our blog. Make sure to follow us on FacebookHouzzTwitterPinterest, or Instagram for more of our inspirational ideas and design posts.