Sunday DIY: Watercolour Mug

I love a lazy Sunday. For me, they're all about getting up early to potter around the house, getting round to those things that I've not had time to do in the week (taking blog photos and catching up with blog reading are essential!) and trying out new recipes or indulging in a little DIY.

I spotted a DIY for watercolour mugs on Poppytalk inspired by watercolour manicures which I had been meaning to try out for weeks, it seemed perfect for a Sunday DIY! It's so easy to do and you can transform a plain mug into something beautiful, it is a little tricky to get right at first but after some practice, you can make some amazing effects!

I changed the technique slightly, just to make my first attempt fool proof, so I thought I'd take you through the steps so you can make your very own watercolour mug. 

What you'll need

  • Plain, white mug (or mugs if you want to make a set)
  •  Nail polish (any kind will work)
  • A disposable tray or old bowl
  • Kitchen roll
  • Nail Varnish remover 
  • Skewer
You'll probably have most of these at home, nothing special is needed! It may take you a couple of attempts to get the technique right but the beauty of it is that you can just use nail varnish remover to clean up.

Start by filling your tray with warm (not too hot) water, then add a drop of your chosen nail polish to the water. Brighter or richer colours tend to work better as they stand out better. I opted for a pigment rich polish from No 7, but any polish should work!

I wanted to create a dipped effect with mine but you can place the watercolour effect wherever you like on the mug. For the dipped effect, all you have to do is place the mug in the water making sure to get good coverage from the film of nail varnish. For the purple mug, I dipped and carefully brought the mug out, turning it to make sure all of the ripples could be seen. For the pink mug, I dipped in and took it straight out to get a double layered effect. This could look really good with a range of bright polishes on a set of mugs!

Pat the excess water off the mug with kitchen towel then leave it to dry for at least two hours. Tidy up any areas that you're not happy with using the nail varnish remover. You can dip again to get even more layers if you fancy too!

This is a really simple DIY using things you probably have around the house, they're great for presents or just injecting a bit of colour into old mugs you have at home! To see the original DIY post, click here.

Enjoy making yours, tweet me a picture if you try it out, I'd love to see!


  1. This is like actually the first diy where I have everything already! Such a cool idea. I love how both of them turned out. The pink one kind of created a forest tree effect. I will most definitely tweet you a picture after my own diy.

  2. This was such a lovely DIY! And your pictures are lovely too, I love the purple dipped mug.

    Lagerfeld Love

  3. What a lovely idea! I love the end product - really lovely colour.

    Em | Hmm maybe...

  4. These are gorgeous! I really love that you've used nail polish to create this effect - they really do look like watercolours. And it means basically any girl can make them! :)

    Tamsin xx | A Certain Adventure

  5. i think you're my newest favorite blog i've bookmarked you already, teehee! :) lots of love from here! xoxo Flea

    The Flea Marcat

  6. Beautiful effect! And it's so simple to do.

  7. These look fantastic! What a great idea. X

    Kate Louise Blogs

  8. This is actually really cool! We love our DIY and we've been looking for something to do for a while!

    M + K

  9. Who knew you could make something so cool from nail varnish! I love personalised things like these! They make such great (and cheap!) gifts as you said :)

    Gabby xo

    Blog - What She Buys / Instagram / Twitter

  10. This is amazing! I will definitely be trying it out as soon as I get the opportunity.

    xo, Britnee
    The Model Cachet

  11. Those mugs look so cool - at first i didn't realise you used nail varnish, that's a very clever idea and it turned out so so well! x
    | Life as a Petite || Fashion, Crafts & Lifestyle Blog |

  12. They look so beautiful, so clever! <3 xxx

  13. This is a brilliant idea ! I can't wait to try it. It'd look so lovely to have all different mugs in different polish colours =D

    Feathers and Brushes | Swiss | Beauty & Lifestyle


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