Thursday, January 17, 2013

Make your own unofficial Mr Man Mug. OR...The Big Pinterest Sharpie Myth

Like so many of my projects, this one was very much a case of trial and error.  I'd seen post after post of pins on Pinterest about how you can draw on ceramics with Sharpie pens, bake them in the oven and then you have a lovely personalised gift that's washable and pretty durable... well - big shock - it's not.

I'd bought my big mug and I was all excited to draw on my lovely design as a Christmas present for my husband.

I was pretty pleased with the result - it was black and white, minimalist and unique...

However after 2 weeks of very careful washing, the ink was clearly coming off...

... and after just a bit of scrubbing with a kitchen towel and some glass cleaner, the design virtually all came off.

So I couldn't leave it like that, I ordered a ceramic pen from my local art shop and when it arrived, I set out to trace over the remains of the first design properly.  However, I should have ordered one with a fine point, as the ink from the pen flowed much too thickly for my liking.

Oh dear, third time's a charm!

This time I (hopefully) did it properly...

There's a lovely website were you can design your own unofficial Mr Man.  It's very easy to waste 10 minutes just playing with different Mr Men - if you're that way inclined...  The design I used is personal to my husband - he has a name and everything!

My mug was a big pint mug, so I saved my image at 9.3cm tall.  I cut it out roughly and then scribbled all over the back in pencil.

I cleaned the area I was going to apply my design to with glass cleaner, taped on my image and then carefully traced over all the black lines in pencil.

This gave me a faint outline which I could fill with my paints...

Some parts came out thicker than others, so I left it a day and went over it again. 

Then after leaving it to dry for several hours I neatened all my edges with my fine black ceramic pen and left it to dry for 48 hours.
He's not perfect, but he's one of a kind.  Maybe I'll make a whole family of not so perfect Mr Men and Little Misses... maybe...  Let's hope he stays around, I'll keep you posted!

Here are the materials I used for my final mug -
  • 1 large pint mug
  • Some glass cleaner and kitchen towel to clean the mug prior to painting.
  • A print out of my own Mr Man design from here
  • A pencil to scribble on the back of the image and to trace around the outline.
  • Some sticky tape to attach the image to the mug.
  • A Porcelaine 150 Discovery Set.
  • Porcelaine 150 Fine Black Marker Pen.
  •  Some good quality paint brushes.
  • 1 domestic oven.
After leaving my painted mug for 2 days, (my paint was quite thick, so I doubled the recommended drying time) I put it in a cold oven and then heated it to 150 degrees C.  Once the oven was up to temperature I set the timer for 35 minutes, after which I turned the oven off and left it to cool.

The instructions say it's dishwasher proof, but I may avoid that cleaning method for a while.  Also, the paints aren't recommended for contact with food - not that they're toxic, but it's better to be safe.  They may chip off with a steak knife, for example.

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Melissa @ No. 2 Pencil said...

Super, super cute! Love it!

Anonymous said...

what a great idea and thank-you I thought I was doing something wrong with the sharpies

Unknown said...

Wonderful Post Dear ………keep posting!!
Print pictures on cups