How to Make a Dots-and-Dashes Ice Cream Bowl

Last week we shared a roundup of fun ice cream DIY projects to enjoy for National Ice Cream Month. Hopefully some of those ideas motivated your family to try a few at home and, of course, enjoy some tasty ice cream cones! This week we’ve got a simple project lined up to once again salute our favorite summertime dessert as July comes to a close. A plain plastic bowl given the permanent marker dots-and-dashes treatment resembles colorful sprinkles that make any ice cream cone a real treat. Your child can personalize a bowl just in time for tonight’s snack.


  • Plain white plastic bowl or dish
  • Fine tip Sharpie markers – your choice of colors
  • Painter’s tape


Start out by masking off an area with the painters tape for your children to decorate. You don’t have to mask off areas, but if you’d like any part to remain plain, this is a good approach. It also provides areas, once the decorating is complete, for your child to write their name in.

Tip: Look for inexpensive plastic bowls in the dollar section of your local grocery store or convenience store.

For the first pass around the bowl, pick a favorite marker color and focus on the dots. Dedicate one color to each masked area.

For the second pass around the bowl, add dashes with the permanent markers. Once each section has been dotted and dashed, go back once again and add additional colors to each section for a confetti-like look.

Once the dotting and dashing is done, peel off the painter’s tape. Let the bowl sit and dry for at least an hour before using. In this scenario I don’t recommend adding a dishwasher-friendly sealant like Mod Podge as it tends to make the markers run. Wash the bowl by hand after snack time to preserve the artwork.


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