This post may contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission off of at NO extra cost to you.  For more info, view my Privacy Policy.

Have you recently acquired a Cricut machine and you aren’t sure how to add vinyl to a cup or mug? Then this tutorial is for you! I will be showing you how to add vinyl to any cup. This process will work for any mug, cup or tumbler that you may have. I’ll be putting vinyl on some Color Changing Cups from Manna Hydration that I really love! Plus, I’ll be sharing a code for BOGO for them later on! (Code was good at time of posting this on 8/31/22)

***Post may contain affiliate links***

cricut joy with 3 coloring changing cups laid next to it with colorful vinyl decals on all 3 cups

Where to Start?

If you are newer to using your Cricut, the #1 thing that I see people mention is that they feel overwhelmed when even just thinking about using it. My advice is start small and simple and work your way up! I wouldn’t advise your 1st cup project to be a piece made with 6 layers, I’d highly recommend starting with a simple design and 1 layer project.

To make it even look fancier, I’d use a basic design but try a glitter or holographic vinyl that will really pop on your cup. It’ll make the cup look fancier without being so overwhelming of a project! But, do keep in mind, if you choose to use a glitter vinyl, that will probably require having to use a strong grip transfer tape. The holographic vinyl on the other hand won’t and the regular transfer tape will work.

Here’s a mug that I made using holographic vinyl. The mug came from the Dollar Tree for $1 and some scrap vinyl. Talk about an inexpensive yet super cute gift idea! The image is also available in Design Space #M2673CAA3

a white mug with holographic teal and purple vinyl that says coffee + create sat in front of many skeins of colorful yarn

Color Changing Cups –

I have to share these because they are some of my favorite color changing cups that I’ve found and they are very reasonably priced!

12 pack of manna hydration color changing cups.

They are from Manna Hydration. They have both 24oz and 12oz ones! And, they come in so many different fun colors. I’ve been really impressed with them so far and I’ve ordered from them multiple times and have been happy every time!

They come in 24 cups per order. PLUS, use code ‘CCC21’ and put a quantity of 2 into your cart and pay only $50 for 48 cups! That’s right over $1 per cup! That’s amazing! Find the cups HERE

PIN this post to Pinterest to Save for Later!

How to add vinyl to any cup mug or tumbler tutorial pinnable Pin image for Pinterest

Follow me on Social Media to Keep up with NEW Stuff!

I also made a full video for this project if you’d like to watch me add vinyl to a cup or you can keep scrolling for the written instructions!

Supplies You Will Need –

  • Cricut Machine (I will be using the Joy, but the process is very similar for all machines)
  • Cup, Mug or Tumbler of Choice (I’m using color changing cups, find them HERE use code ‘CCC21’ for BOGO)
  • Standard Grip Mat
  • Permanent Vinyl (Both rainbow vinyls came from Hobby Lobby)
  • Transfer Tape
  • Weeding Tool
  • Isopropyl Alcohol
  • Cotton Ball
  • All these designs that I used can be found in Cricut Design Space! Here’s the # for each design. Unicorn – #M3D056B87 Pineapple – #M3BBE916A Sunflower – #MB534769
Manna hydration cups, cricut joy and vinyl laid on a table to show you how to add vinyl to any cup

How to Add Vinyl to Any Cup –

No matter what kind of cup you are using, you will need to make sure that it’s clean. I like to take a cotton round and pour alcohol over it. I use that to rub the outside of the cup and area where I will be attaching the decal. This makes sure that there is nothing but a really clean surface for our decal to stick to and will prolong its life.

We will start by opening up Cricut Design Space. You’ll want to start a new project and make sure you start with a clean canvas. The New Project button will be on the top right hand corner if you are on a desktop.

Picture 1 of step by step photos of how to add vinyl to any cup, mug, or tumbler

Make sure that you choose which machine you are using from the drop down menu in the upper right corner.

You will then select Images. You can search for an image by category or type whatever you are looking for into the search bar. I decided to do a Unicorn. All the images that have a little green ‘a’ on the side of them are for Cricut Access members only. There is a box that you can check if you’d like to only see free images, because there are free images available. Or you can purchase an individual image for a small fee. You can even upload your own image by clicking the upload button a few buttons down from the images button.

Picture 2 of step by step photos of how to add vinyl to any cup, mug, or tumbler

Once you have selected an image, click it and it should appear on the bottom right of the screen in a little circle. I chose to use this unicorn image which happens to be a Cricut access image. Then click ‘Add to Canvas’ in the bottom right corner.

Picture 3 of step by step photos of how to add vinyl to any cup, mug, or tumbler

If you will notice, I selected an image that was made up of layers. Which means that normally, you would use many colors of vinyl and layer them on top of each other to create this design, however, I don’t want to use multiple layers. You see all the layers on the right side, like this

Picture 4 of step by step photos of how to add vinyl to any cup, mug, or tumbler

I just want to use 1 layer and this will work for this image, it might not work for every image though. To turn it into a 1 layer image, you want to make sure that you have selected the image and click the ‘weld’ button on the bottom right side, it will then turn the image into 1 solid color and cut. But, do keep in mind, it depends on the image as to whether you will have to do this step or not.

Picture 5 of step by step photos of how to add vinyl to any cup, mug, or tumbler

Now you will want to size the image down to fit your cup. Depending on what type of cup or tumbler you are using, you will have to measure and change the size of the image. You can do that by typing the desired size into the W x H area across to top or by clicking one the corners of the image and pushing inward to shrink the image. For my color changing cups, I made my image 3.39” x 4.25”. Once you have sized the image to where you want it, click ‘Make it’ in to top right hand corner

Picture 6 of step by step photos of how to add vinyl to any cup, mug, or tumbler

You will then have to chose whether you will be using smart vinyl (without a mat) or just a regular mat with vinyl on it. Click ‘Continue’.

The image can then be moved to a different spot depending on where you placed the vinyl on the mat or where you want it to cut.

You can now select the material that you will be using. You can view more materials by clicking the “Browse All Materials” Button on the right.

Cut your piece of vinyl and lay it on your mat with the colored side facing up (if you aren’t using Smart Vinyl). You will then load your mat into the machine and make sure you have your fine point blade inserted into your machine.

Once you mat or vinyl has been loaded into the machine, click “GO” in the bottom right corner. Once your cut has been completed, tell it to unload your mat.

You can now weed your design and remove all excess vinyl.

Picture 11 of step by step photos of how to add vinyl to any cup, mug, or tumbler

Cut a piece of transfer tape and lay it over the decal and rub it with either your fingers or a scraper

Picture 12 of step by step photos of how to add vinyl to any cup, mug, or tumbler

Peel off the mat away from the piece of decal and paper. Rub the scraper over the backside of the white piece. Then gently peel the white piece away from the transfer tape. The decal should stick to the transfer tape. If it tries to stay on the white piece, rub it some more and then try to peel it off again.

You can now line the decal up on the cup and make sure to rub and press it all over.

Picture 14 of step by step photos of how to add vinyl to any cup, mug, or tumbler

Gently peel the transfer tape off of the cup. If the decal tries to come off too, just press it firmly again and then try to remove the transfer tape.

And your new cup or tumbler is finished!

a hot pink color changing cup with a decal of a holographic vinyl unicorn on the front with a couple cups and a cricut joy in the background

How to Care for Your New Cup –

So, there are a couple things to keep in mind after you add a decal to your cup.

  1. Wait 24-48 hours before you use it. I know this is super hard, but you want to make sure that the vinyl has a chance to really bond to your cup. You don’t want your cup to sweat and weaken the bond of the vinyl before it’s had a chance to adhere correctly.
  2. Hand washing only is highly recommended. The reason is that dishwashers get so hot and that can possibly loosen the vinyl causing it to peel.

I hope that you have found this tutorial helpful! I love to see what everyone makes using inspiration from my blog! Be sure to tag me @okiegirlblingnthings on Instagram so I can see!

Similar Posts

Did you love this craft?

Make sure to comment below so we can chat about it! Or follow on your favorite social network for even more patterns and tutorials.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *