Oh, you didn't get Dad a Father's Day gift yet?

For some reason I'm on a craft kick and I can't stop myself. I think I'm just procrastinating to avoid the boring tasks on my to do list like insurance renewals and a closet clean-out. Regardless, I knew I wanted Father's Day this year to include a few handcrafted gifts, and this is one that the little guy and I created for his grandfathers, "Papa" and "Grandpa." (Dudes, if you didn't even know it was Father's Day this coming weekend, YOU'RE WELCOME. Now go get that guy a card.)

Like all of the projects I do, this one is super easy. All you need is a ceramic mug (I got mine at Target for $3, but I'm sure you can find them cheaper), a set of Porcelaine markers, an oven and some inspiration (mine was the argyle pattern on the pair of socks I was wearing).

The markers are a little tricky to use, so here are a few tips I learned with some trial and error.

  • Do a quick sketch on the mug with a pencil - mistakes with the markers are not easy (almost impossible) to fix.
  • Be sure the marker tip is saturated before starting to write on the mug (use a scrap sheet of paper to get it started, it will take waaaaay longer to do than you think it should).
  • Once you start writing on the mug, work quickly. The paint dries really fast and, again, doesn't leave much room for error.
  • Only go for one layer of color, it will look more even.
  • Keep a damp  dish towel nearby for quick clean-ups. If you make a mistake and react quickly, a little wet paper towel or dish towel can wipe it right up.
Once you're done writing/painting on the mug, let it set for 24 hours. The next day, preheat your oven to 300 F and then pop in the mug for 35 minutes. Baking the mug makes it totally dishwasher safe! And the markers are totally non-toxic so they're safe to use for the morning cup of coffee.