DIY Personalized Cups – New Video!

DIY, Tutorial, Video

Tired of half-filled cups of water littering your kitchen counters (and bathroom and bedrooms and patio)? Personalized cups for your family members means eliminating oodles of dishwashing! This salt water etching technique for engraving stainless steel is easy, fun and even the kids can help!  Eliminate unnecessary plastic in your household with these sturdy stainless steel cups.

Stop the water cup madness! Etch stainless steel cups for each of your family members and wash only one cup per person!



Having kids means random things littered around the house and if I had a dollar for every half-filled cup of water left loitering around my house I’d be sipping virgin margaritas in Cabo on a full-time basis.  It used to be like the movie Signs up in this place; those cups were driving me crazy! I was also sick of the little ones swapping germs when they grabbed some random cup off the counter for a drink.

Enter these personalized cups! They have simplified life IMMENSELY and my kids love them too.  We keep everyone’s cup in one corner of the counter at all times and they can come grab a drink whenever they need to. We also use them for meals and I only have to throw them in the dishwasher about once a week since we drink water 99% of the time.



This salt water etching method is as easy as it gets and I churned through 8 cups in no time!  Read on for all the instructions and the video tutorial.
Stop the water cup madness! Etch stainless steel cups for each of your family members and wash only one cup per person!

Supplies

stainless steel tumblers
9 volt battery
Electric leads with alligator clips
vinyl stencil (I used my Cricut Maker machine to create mine)
Q-tips
1 cup warm water
1/4 cup salt

**Caution: this chemical process will emit a foul smell. Don’t inhale it! Be sure to do this DIY in a well-ventilated area.

  1. Wash cup thoroughly.
  2. Cut a stencil out of vinyl with your Cricut machine.  Trim the vinyl and apply transfer tape to the top.
  3. Peel off the vinyl backing and apply it to the cup. Remove transfer tape.
  4. Pour salt into water and stir.
  5. Wet one end of a Q-tip with the salt water.
  6. Connect red lead clip to positive terminal of battery and other end of red lead to cup rim.
  7. Connect black lead clip to negative terminal of battery and other end of black lead to the wet end of Q-tip.
  8. Use the wet Q-tip to rub the exposed metal within the stencil.  Continue rubbing until Q-tip begins to change colors.  It will first become yellow, and then a darker red and sometimes black. Change Q-tips as necessary. I used 3 total for this project.
  9. When the etching is as dark as desired, remove the stencil, wash cup well and enjoy fewer cups lounging around the house!These would make a fabulous wedding or baby present too! I bought these silicone sippy lids to go with them and LOVE them.  They work perfectly for Mimi and even Alice can work them (and she can’t figure out any of our other sippy cups!)

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8 Comments

  • Reply
    Stephanie
    March 22, 2018 at 7:22 am

    These are great! Do the initials start to rust after a while?

    • Reply
      Bonnie
      March 22, 2018 at 1:58 pm

      So far so good! A commenter on FB suggested only handwashing etched metal but we’ve thrown them in the dishwasher and they still look great after a month or so. Time will tell 🙂

  • Reply
    Delia
    March 22, 2018 at 1:39 pm

    Oh my gosh. This is brilliant! Thank you for sharing!

    • Reply
      Bonnie
      March 22, 2018 at 1:58 pm

      You’re welcome, Delia!

  • Reply
    Saint
    March 24, 2018 at 1:23 pm

    I ordered my alligator clip leads from your link and they don’t appear to be the same that you used, did you modify them? LOL I’m a bit tech challenged.

    • Reply
      Bonnie
      March 26, 2018 at 3:18 pm

      No, I actually had some already hanging out in my garage so I just linked to some other ones on amazon. But any alligator clip electrical leads will work! There’s nothing fancy about the ones I used.

  • Reply
    Irene
    March 25, 2018 at 9:51 pm

    So maybe I’m weird, but my first thought when I saw this: “what a great idea for a science project that would be useful item when you’re done!” Maybe try etching with different ratios of salt water, or different metals…

    • Reply
      Bonnie
      March 26, 2018 at 3:19 pm

      Yes totally, Irene! It definitely was a fun chemistry conversation for me and my kids!

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