Thursday, March 27, 2014

The Sharpie Marker, An Indispensable Modern Convenience!

My grandparents told tales of life without indoor plumbing or streets filled with cars.  My parents speak of a time before plastics and televisions. I frequently remind my own kids of my past existence without a computer or a cell phone. We take so many things in our daily lives for granted. Just try to imagine life without the Sharpie marker!

I started thinking about Sharpies this week, when I came across a post, "20 Fun Sharpie Projects" on another blog (  After trying unsuccessfully to remember when I first held a sharpie, I decided to do a little research about them.

According to Pilot Pen website, the first felt tip marker was patented about 100 years ago.  The "magic marker", a brand of marker developed in the early 1950's was so popular its name was often used when referring to any type of marker. According to the website, the Sanford Ink Company introduced the Sharpie Fine Point Black Marker in 1964.  It wrote on almost any surface, and was apparently the first pen-style permanent marker.

This year is the 50th anniversary of the Sharpie marker.  There is now a wide array of types and colors of Sharpie marker.  "Sharpie" has replaced "magic marker"  as a word sometimes used when referring to any type of marker. We use them for all sorts of projects and tasks, and it is hard to imagine what we would do without them.

Ten ways I have found Sharpies to be useful:
  1. Provide a Sharpie marker at parties, so guests will write their name on their plastic cups and create less waste.
  2. During swim meets or track meets, writing race information (event, heat, lane and stroke) on kid's arms or legs provides portable information about their turn to race.
  3. Reduce loss or theft of items by labeling clothes, luggage, electronics, etc. etc.  
  4. Identify garden plants  by writing information about them on metal tags, stones or Popsicle sticks.
  5. Create ceramic gifts by decorating oven-safe mugs, bowls, or platters and baking them at 350 degrees F. to set the ink (hand wash only).
  6. Write the date and contents on freezer bags
  7. Create posters or signs for any occasion.
  8. Create a design on a t-shirt or tote bag.
  9. Use a Sharpie highlighter to mark favorite sections in a book.
  10. Create a wall hanging, such as the one I made below:
"Life takes us to unexpected places...Love brings us home."
The author of this quote is unknown, but it is a very fitting saying for my family.

What is your most creative use of a Sharpie?


  1. We don't call them Sharpies here, but yes, they are very, very useful.
    If I had to make a choice though, I would sacrfice them and keep flushing lavatories....
    Luckily I can keep both.

    1. When you put it that way - I'm reay glad we can keep both as well!

  2. You are the only one I know who could take a subject like a Sharpie Marker and make it fun and interesting! Great job Susan!

  3. I've seen some other people mention decorating coffee mugs with sharpies as well. I sooo want to try that. I think it would make a great father's day gift from the kids. :) I LOVE sharpies. Found a deal on a rainbow pack and just HAD to have it (though at times I wonder what I should use them all for..but they're so pretty). :)


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