Personalized Photo Mugs

Tips and tricks for making your own personalized photo mugs, photo travel mugs, personalized water bottles, Starbucks travel mugs and more! You can even create your own tumbler.

Giving and using a custom photo mug or personalized tumblers is a wonderful way to surround someone with photos of friends and loved ones. And you don't even have to own your own photo mug business to make a photo mug that will bring a smile to someone's face.

personalized photo mugs

Custom photo mugs make great gifts for boyfriends, Christmas gifts for grandparents, retirement gifts for Dad and unique friendship gifts.

Basically, with the large selection of styles and choices available, personalized photo mugs make great gifts for recipients of all ages and for occasions of all kinds.

Mug Design

Custom printed photo mugs don't have to be just a plain, single photo on a coffee mug. You can put any logo, design, image OR photo on a mug. You could also use a picture mosaic or photo collage. Combined with the right saying, you could even breathe life into those awkward family photos.


There's no reason to purchase top-of-the-line personalized photo mugs if all you're going for is gag birthday gifts

coffee mugs

The look and feel of the mug is entirely up to you. One of the advantages of creating your own personalized photo gifts is that they can be as individual, personal, fun, professional and/or humorous as you need them to be. Consider including the recipient's name, an inspirational quote or funny message.

It seems like these days just about every copy and print shop, drugstore and online printing vendor offer some version of a customized coffee mug.

Product quality and design options vary greatly. Match the mug with the occasion and gift recipient.

Be aware that product quality, design options, price, turn-around time and customer service vary greatly between businesses. Your design flexibility and mug style and quality will be determined by the vendor you choose.

I'm a huge fan of the BLACK interior of Heritage Maker's mugs, as shown here. Can you say, "Hey, I can't see the coffee stains!"

Use Ideas

Once the mug is created, it can be used at home or at the office for drinking coffee, tea or milk. My favorite part of having personalized tumblers around the house is that there is no mistaking which drinking tumbler belongs to which child, regardless of what is inside.

And don't forget that a coffee mug can go beyond it's traditional purpose of holding beverages! A custom printed coffee mug could also be used to hold pens and pencils on a teacher's desk, a small plant on the window seal or craft supplies in the play room.

Beyond Mugs

Still wondering if a personalized photo mug is the best option? Don't worry - you have choices!

Many of the companies that sell personalized photo mugs will sell similar items as well, such as a personalized water bottle, beer stein or drinking tumblers. The composition of these items will vary. They can be ceramic, stainless steel, plastic or porcelain. And, of course, depending on how it's made, your item may or may not be dishwasher safe.

A different kind of photo travel mugs

If you like the idea of a personalized photo mug but don't want the open top of a ceramic mug, you may want to create your own tumbler. Personalized tumblers, such as the Starbucks travel mugs pictured here, are a great option. You can download a template or make up your own. (To purchase the actual tumbler, visit your local Starbucks or check online.)

Go to the gift ideas for nurses page to see more details about how the inserts for these drinking tumblers were designed.

I customized the inserts for these drinking tumblers (found at the Dollar Tree, of all places) based on a Heritage Makers template. A 12x12 digital scrapbook page makes two tumbler inserts, so when all was said and done, it cost me only $2.75 per mug. Talk about inexpensive personalized gifts!

Gift Presentation

When presenting a mug as a gift you have yet another option - wrap it OR use it as a container. Fill your personalized photo mugs with candy, mints, hot chocolate or other items, and then wrap it in cellophane and secure with a bow.

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