How to Make a Gnome Tumbler
How to Make a Gnome Tumbler

How to Make a Gnome Tumbler


Our resin artists never stop amazing us with their creativity and ingenuity! Today we are sharing how to make a gnome tumbler and the design is adorable and incredibly creative! You are absolutely going to love this project!

Every holiday season we love seeing what all of you come up with for festive designs. As usual, this year you all have knocked it out of the sleigh again! We just had to share these adorable gnome tumblers with you and resin artist Char of Lion-S Designs was generous enough to share her process with us. Char was inspired by a gnome design done by fellow artist Trina of Mighty Mamma. She adapted the process to create these adorable tumblers! One of the things we love most about this community is how willing our artist are to share ideas while teaching and supporting each other. We are so blessed to be a part of this wonderful group of artists! 

How to make a Gnome Tumbler How to make a gnome tumbler

How to Make a Gnome Tumbler

Char and Trina are both part of the fabulous group of artists who work and share together in our Counter Culture DIY Artist Support group on Facebook. Char was so excited to share her process with us when we reached out to ask her about these sweet Christmas gnomes. She is a talented resin artist and the results of this design are amazing! Here is what Char had to say about these wonderful gnome tumblers… 

“Thank you Counter Culture DIY for a place for us to learn and inspire others. Sometimes what we see in others’ work sparks the creative juices. We each have our own style and sharing ideas can only broaden the landscape for others in our craft. The idea for the gnome cups was inspired by the wine glasses that Trina VanAalst posted on the CCDIY Artist Support group. I was able to look at her design and create my own version on a stainless steel coffee and “oddball” tumbler. My supplies from CCDIY helped bring these cute little guys to life with depth and shine. By the time I was done I feel like they each took on a personality of their own.”

A Note about Colors…

Char used Dispersion Colors to get the shades she wanted for these sweet little guys. The colors you use will depend on the shades you are going for. You can use one color or several mixed together depending on the pallet you want to achieve. Remember that a little bit of Dispersion Color goes a long way. Start with just a tiny bit and then add more if you need to. The same goes with glitter too. The glitters that Char chose matched up with her color blends. You’ll want to chose your glitters to match your shades as well. Whatever products you use, you are sure to love how adorably your gnome turns out! 


  • Stainless Steel Tumbler
  • Glitter Red, blue, and white
  • ModPodge
  • Rustoleum 2x Clear
  • AirDry Clay
  • Counter Culture DIY Dispersion Colors White to mix with the beard glitter, a variety of colors to create the color for the hat
  • Counter Culture DIY Quick Coat
  • Counter Culture DIY Stick Tight
  • Counter Culture DIY Fast Set
  • Counter Culture DIY Artist Resin


  • I prepped and put a glitter base on my tumblers using Fast Set for the epoxy method then a coat of Artist Resin.
  • To create the beard I made a stencil with vinyl and placed it on the cup. I mixed White Snow Dispersion color with my mod podge and added the beard with mod podge and glitter, repeating until I had good coverage.
  • I sealed the beard with Rustoleum 2x clear. I chose to spray it to keep any of the glitter from moving with quick coat.
  • Next I added the vinyl design to the bottom.
  • I used Artist Resin to cover the beard. The Artist Resin was thick enough to use one coat. Since you are working the clay you don’t have to have the white of the beard perfectly smooth at this point, but good enough that you won’t have clay built up in it.
  • To apply the clay I rolled out a section that would fit around the cup and made it about ¼" thick. The ¼" is important because it is the recommended thickness for air dry clay to dry without much cracking and not be so thick that it takes a long time to dry. I chose to add a layer of mod podge for the clay to grip to.  I shaped the clay around the top of my cup leaving a small gap around the top rim as a place to make sure the lid fits and the epoxy can get a good seal.
  • For the brim of the cap I rolled a section of clay and worked it onto the edge of my clay. This shaping is done to your liking and just takes getting your hands dirty. Keep your clay soft enough to work, but don’t add too much water or you will experience more cracking as the clay dries. Roll some noses; make sure there is a side that’s mostly flat to be against the tumbler. I made extra; just different sizes and shapes to try them on later.
  • Allow the clay to dry for 24 hours. You don’t want it in a direct heat source because you want it to dry slowly. If you have a heater going you may want to cover them with a wet paper towel laid gently across them.  You WILL get cracks. As cracks appear use some clay mixed with water (called slip) and fill them in. If you are filling larger cracks (like from overnight) use some slip to get the dry clay slightly wet and then add more clay and work it together. Some fine lines and things can be covered in your next step. Any large cracks, just keep filling and working. Use as little water as needed to adhere the clay to its self and smooth it but not too much that it sinks deeply into the clay.
  • You want the clay to be completely dry before moving on to the next step. If it’s not dry it could mildew and that would be gross.
  • Next, attach your nose using mod podge.
  • Use mod podge colored the color you want your gnomes hat and nose to be. I colored the mod podge with Dispersion Colors, this allowed me to mix until I got the color that I wanted. I was able to save the mixture in a baggie and re-use it for several layers. The mod podge seals your clay but does NOT make it water proof. Allow it to dry overnight.
  • Next, cover the beard and hat with Quick Coat. Make sure you pay attention to the underside. Get in all of the crevices.
  • After the Quick Coat is completely dry you can do the first layer of epoxy. This can be Artist Resin or Fast Set. Stop your turner and use a toothpick or something to make sure the resin is going into any cracks or crevices.
  • Continue to layer epoxy until you feel it is fully covered and smooth. Sand lightly in between layers and be sure you wash your cup well after sanding. Use Stick Tight after washing and make sure you use a clean microfiber towel to dry. To get a great layer of epoxy don’t touch your cup with your fingers after you have washed and dried it.
  • Finally, allow your final layer of epoxy to cure for 24 hours!

How to make a gnome tumbler

The Wrap Up…

During the holiday season we are all trying to think of wonderful gifts to give. We also focus on providing our customers with the options for fabulous gifts to give their loved ones. These gnome tumblers definitely fit the bill for both categories. If you can bear to part with yours they would make fabulous gifts and great additions to your stores. If you loved learning from Char as much as we did you can follow her on Facebook and Instagram to see more of her creations! Don’t forget that we love to see what you create! If you try a gnome tumbler and post it to Instagram be sure to tag us with #counterculturediy so we can check it out. 

If you want more inspiration and information we have a Facebook group for that. Join us in Counter Culture DIY Artist Support where we, and other artists, offer ideas, answer questions, and support each other!

Do you have an art project using any of our products that you want to share? Send it to us at, and we can feature them here!

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