Ok, so you might have been to a Tiki bar and got served a drink in a volcano with burning lava floating down the sides. Perhaps a shrunken skull was the vessel you got yours in? or a zombie monkey head like at Brass Monkey.
During the early days of Tiki bars they used any kind of trick to get their customers to come once, twice a third time and they managed to do so. The drinks were strong, came in fun vessels, they put a hose on the roof to simulate rain to keep them in for longer.
All of a sudden there were Tiki mugs! Believed to originate from Don the Beachcombers restaurants. That meant that all big Tiki bars quickly followed in on that trend.
They made a lot of their signature Tiki mugs so there were plenty to go around and they started selling them as souvenirs to their patrons. Creative thinking yet again to boost sales and make money of inventory.
So how do you make a Tiki mug?
Since I am nor a designer or a master of pottery I will simplify this as much as possible.
You come up with the Idea that you are in deep need of a Tiki Mug, here is how it works.
- Design your mug, there are many great firms and people that can help you with this.
- Make a mold out of your mug.
- Fill up the mold.
- Take the mug out of the mold, and clean it. (Take away imperfections)
- Fire up your oven/kiln and bake it to harden it.
- Paint your mug.
- Fire up your oven again!
- Glaze it in an oven to make it last forever, unless you drop it.
Easy right? All in all a process, that takes about 4 days for the pros!
This is the classic way of doing it, works for most mugs, barrels, bowls, ukuleles, shrunken heads etc.
Time for a trip down memory lane, or just a look at some of the most iconic Tiki Mugs.
Bali Hai, Tiki Bob, Brass Monkey PICURES
Bowls the bigger and mightier serving vessels. Ready to take out at least you and one more. Filled with fire long straws and refreshing cocktails.
Volcano, Scorpion Bowl, Squids Skull PICTURES
* Want to learn how to do a Pearl Diver Punch
Now you are thinking that they were crazy and only using crazy mugs that took forever to make? That is not true though, they also used glassware!
Here are two that became big collectibles! The Pearl Divers Glass is with great thanks to Beachbum Berry becoming reproduced again!
Port light glass from Trader Vics. PICTURE
Pearl divers glass PICURE
If you just have to start collecting these pieces and want to find more and rarer Tiki Mugs, there is a great database where you can look.
Some fun numbers from their website.
There are right now 8 293 Unique Tiki Mugs in the Database.
A total of 53 681 registered Tiki Mugs!
With a total estimated value of $1 985 131,45, on average $36,98 or 240 dkk per mug.