As someone who has an unusual name that is yet to be found on any personalised gift, I am always on the lookout for ways to create customisable presents that can be tailored to individuals.

These spotted mugs were a perfect gift and went down well last Christmas and, although they are a simple present, they do require some time and thought.

List of Materials

  • 2-3 Oil-based ink pens (I bought Castle Art Supplies Medium point ones from Amazon)
  • Scrap paper/letter/cardboard (whatever you have to hand)
  • Plain mug
  • Letter stickers
  • Possibly some cotton buds and rubbing alcohol (or in my case, hand sanitiser)
  • Access to an oven

Step by Step Method

Step 1) Attach the letter stickers onto the plain mug to spell out the desired name – take care to keep it evenly spread and do not put the stickers too close together.

Step 2) Choose your first colour (yes, I’m English and this IS the correct spelling – fight me) and dab it repeatedly on the scrap paper until the paint begins to flow consistently – It might also be worth using the scrap paper for ‘practice’ before applying it to the mug, but that’s up to you.

Step 3) Once the ink pen is ready, begin applying dots close together (can be touching) around each letter with them spreading out more sporadically the further from the letter it gets – if you make a mistake use a cotton bud and rubbing alcohol/hand sanitiser to clean it off.

Step 4) Let this dry! – I’m emphasising this step because I was super impatient on the first one and didn’t wait long enough, which resulted in me wiping it down and starting again.

Step 5) Once the first set of dots are completely dry, take your second colour and, using a similar method to the first, apply the dots around each letter and let it dry completely.

Optional Step) Apply a third dotted layer (I usually use gold or silver).

Step 6) Once the layers have fully dried (I left mine for 48 hours, but that’s partly due to making it midweek, in the evenings, around work) begin the process of peeling the letter stickers off, taking care not to scratch off the paint.

At this point there may be some clean up needed inside the letters so use a cotton bud and rubbing alcohol – I found that sometimes the ink ‘leaked’ underneath the letters when I was applying it, but you might be fine.

Step 7) Heat up the oven to about 160 degrees (140 fan) and place the mugs inside for 45-60 minutes.

As soon as it’s done, turn off the oven, leaving the mugs inside to cool completely (I left mine overnight). As soon as it’s cooled, you’re done. There are so many combinations to create so enjoy experimenting.