DIY Marbled Espresso Cups & Saucers

Update old cups and saucers with this cute DIY, using just water and nail polish! It can be a bit tricky but you soon pick it up… 

You Will Need:

  • plain cups, saucers etc.
  • nail polish
  • old bowl
  • warm water
  • cocktail stick/paint brush
  • plastic sheet
  • nail polish remover & cotton pads for clean ups

Step One
Pick out some nice colourful polishes and set them up. Fill an old bowl (one you don’t mind getting dirty, you can use an old ice cream tub) with warm/hot water. 

Step Two
Line up all your supplies so you have them to hand, you will need to place the plastic near the bowl so you can place your painted cups on the plastic to dry. 


Step Three
Pour a couple of drops of nail polish in to the warm water, swirl for effect with the cocktail stick and then dunk your cup in to the water, sort of swirling it through the nail polish. 
Once you’re happy, place the cup on the plastic sheet to dry. 

Step Four
Continue doing this until you have done all the cups and saucers. Sometimes the nail polish sits on the surface so be prepared to skim it off and replace the water so it’s warm once more. If you’re not happy with the pattern after you’ve placed the cup in the water, quickly wipe it off with a wet cloth or a cotton pad and polish remover and start all over again. 
It may take a few attempts to get it perfect, but it will be worth it!

You can tidy up the pattern with a bit more polish remover on a cotton pad or even a small makeup brush, and then just leave them to dry overnight. 
These will wash fine by hand, it’s best to avoid placing them in a dishwasher, however. 

Will you be making these? 

Nouvelle Daily

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Nouvelle Daily

After several years of being immersed in beauty & fashion and contributing our thoughts and feelings to the online community, we realised there wasn't a one stop destination for advice and news, reviews and thoughts, latest collections and launches - as well as home and lifestyle inspiration and ideas.
  • nueyork

    These are so incredible and look too beautiful to be hand made! I definitely need to try this one out.

  • Emily

    These look amazing! I’ll definitely have to try these myself.

    Beauty and Lifestyle Blog


  • JasminCharlotte

    These look amazing!! Not sure if I am skilled enough to do these as beautiful but will give it a go x

    Jasmin Charlotte | UK Lifestyle Blog

  • Silvia Lace

    And now I have one more reason to do some water marble nail art. These would be amazing one-of-a-kind gifts!

  • Sophia Charles

    I’ll definitely going to try this! And this is probably going to be my dad’s christmas present, he LOVES coffee!

    Sophia /

  • Noemi

    They’re really cute!

  • Laura Winnard

    These are lovely oh my gosh! Great present ideas.

    Laura Winnard x

  • Joanna

    Changing ordinary into extraordinary!


    It seems so simple and the result is gorgeous ! Will definitely try this one out :)


    • Sam Brown

      I love these too! So easy and so stunning!

      Sam xx – how to make the most of your twenties

  • Lauren Burkitt

    Haha that’s such a neat technique. Who would have thought? Love the outcome, what a great project!

  • Margery Ho
  • Eat.Style.Play

    these came out so well!

  • Anastasia

    They look beautiful! Very fresh as well.

  • Jessica Rose

    Do you know how long the nail polish lasts? Has the colour discoloured or chipped at all? I’m curious as I want to buy some plain cups etc and make this for a crimbo present! 😉

  • Kate

    This is such a good idea! I’ve done water marbling on my nails but never thought to do it on anything else!

  • Stephanie
  • Jennifer Sawyer

    I’m trying it with my ikea espresso cups using gold nail polish

  • Cassandra Myee

    Wow these look incredible! I’ll definitely be trying this out, thanks for sharing

    CassandraMyee | NZ Beauty Blog

  • Minnie

    What an amazing idea!! This colour combo is absolutely beautiful!

  • Jilian Rose

    I can’t wait to get my own place so I can make these! You girls have so many great ideas on this site!!!! I want to do them all now!

  • Catarina

    This seems so interesting, I can’t wait to do this.
    And it’s an amazing thing when you have nail polishes that you no longer use. xx

    Catarina //

  • Clos

    They are so beautiful!!! I want to try.

  • scarlettny