DIY Mug Decorating: I’ll Love You Forever, I’ll Like You for Always

Hello! If you stumbled upon my page from Pinterest or another website, welcome! You can get to know more about me and what you’ll find on The Resplendent, here.  If you’re a mama like me, check out some of my stuff on motherhood, like this letter to new mamas or the day I temporarily went missing. Married? Check out this post on why I love submitting to my husband or this super honest letter to my hubby. And before you go, don’t forget to find me on Instagram and Facebook. I’d love to connect with you, and I hope you’ll stick around! Or don’t. I’m not the boss of you.DIY Permanent Marker Mug
As usual, I wanted to make something crafty for my mama for Mother’s day. I have seen this whole “design your own mug with a permanent marker” thing on Pinterest a bazillion times, so I thought I’d give it a go.

Well, I have good news and I have bad news.

The bad news is, the jig is up, because, it didn’t work people! The design I made with a regular old permanent marker turned out to be not-so-permanent.

Not only did I bake the mug after decorating it with the sharpie for 30 minutes at 350 degrees like I was supposed to, but I did it THREE TIMES! And still, the marker just wiped off when it got wet. Womp wommmmp.

But now, for the good news. I found a simple solution, and the idea behind the sharpie mug lives on!

All I did was…
1. Buy a plain white mug from Target (here are 3 great options under $5: Option 1, Option 2, Option 3) and some of this enamel paint from the model airplane section at Hobby Lobby. It only cost me like a buck! Or you can buy some oil-based paint pens, like these ones.
2. Wrote my design on the mug with pencil first (it rubs right off), and then traced over it with the paint using a very fine brush, which I also bought in the model airplane section of Hobby Lobby.
3. Let it dry.

And now my design is permanent. And my mama can savor her cup o’ joe while simultaneously sobbing into the mug for years to come (because what mom doesn’t cry over the book my mug was inspired by?).
DIY Mug Permanent Marker
DIY Mug Permanent Marker
DIY Mug Permanent Marker
Happy crafting!
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The Resplendent


  1. Alexandra

    I love this! I’m making it for my mom for Mother’s Day. Since I was little this has been our saying and we write it in every card we give each other! No idea why I didn’t think of this prior to seeing this post…

  2. Bailey

    I absolutely love this idea! This is mine and my mom’s favorite quote! I would love to do this for her for mother’s day but I was wondering if you thought it would be okay to do on a wine glass? Would the results be the same?

    Thank you!

  3. Sydney

    I made a mug using the same technique you did above and I let it dry for 24 hours but when I wash it the paint starts to chip off. ????
    I was wondering if you had any ideas on how to fix this.
    Thank you so much.

    1. Marielle

      Oh no! And you used the enamel paint? Does the mug you used have a shiny/slippery finish of some sort? It all comes down to the surfaces you’re combining, and apparently it sounds like not all work with this kind of paint. I would suggest trying one of the oil-based sharpies meant for writing on ceramics that was mentioned above!

  4. layvon

    Love the mug, so touching and personal! I want to make one as well, But when you say you used a permanent marker, was it the sharpie oil based pen? Or was it the regular sharpie permanent marker?

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