Gold Leaf | Gilding Tutorial


Gold Leaf | Gilding Tutorial

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When you’re wanting so as to add a textured gold look to a furnishings or decor piece, this gilding tutorial is for you!

Gilding has been round for millennia, and but, it’s nonetheless an attractive and sensible method for modern-day makes use of!

I’m truly going to be educating tips on how to make a gilded oyster shell ring dish as one of many hands-on-workshops at my Bespoke Design Retreat developing this fall! Registration is barely open for a couple of extra days till August 1st! Go to bespokedesignretreat.com to be taught extra and to avoid wasting your ticket earlier than it’s too late!

** When you’re studying this publish after August 1, 2023 – Registration for the 2023 journey is already closed, however you may be a part of the Waitlist Right here to be notified for future Bespoke occasions! **

Now earlier than I bounce in to this gilding tutorial, I needed to reply a couple of of the most important questions I hear usually in regards to the course of.

Frequent Gilding Questions:

*This publish accommodates affiliate hyperlinks to merchandise I do know &/or love.

What’s the distinction between gilding & gold leaf?

Gilding is the method of making use of a “leaf” or skinny sheet of metallic to an object.

And whereas gold leaf has all the time been one of the vital common choices, it’s not the one one! Traditionally, copper, aluminum and silver have all been used as leaf for their very own gilding functions as properly.

Why selected to gild as an alternative of utilizing spray paint or Rub n Buff?

It will come right down to a bit of private desire, however my determination depends on a couple of issues:

  • The scale of the merchandise – if it’s bigger, I’ll usually keep on with spray paint. I additionally use spray paint if I desire a excessive gloss and/or very clean glam end.

My favourite spray paint was the Design Grasp 24-Carat Pure Gold Metallic Spray paint, however Natalie over at My Classic Porch shared in regards to the Rustoleum Champagne Bronze Metallic Spray paint, and I’ve actually been loving it!

After being the fore-runner for the previous few years, the Design Grasp has been formally changed. I like that the Rustoleum a) stops rust b) is a prettier shade of gold, and c) is cheaper!

  • If it’s very small or detailed, or if spray portray would require a considerable amount of prep (eradicating a lightweight fixture or taping off numerous small areas, I’ll often use Rub N Buff.

My favourite shade of Rub N Buff is Vintage Gold, however they’ve 5 completely different gold choices, plus 2 silvers and 1 black shade in the event you wanted these for a unique mission.

  • If I’m doing a bigger merchandise however I need to have brush strokes for visible curiosity, I’ll use a product referred to as Liquid Leaf. I simply did a DIY bronze gentle shade with liquid leaf that you may see HERE.
  • If I would like texture, patina and character – I select to gild with gold leaf!

And with that, let’s bounce into the tutorial!

Simple DIY Gilding Tutorial


  • Measurement | That is the particular adhesive used for gold leaf.
  • Gold Leaves | This may be bought both in imitation gold leaf, or in real gold leaf (which is clearly a bit dearer.) We used about 50 sheets for this espresso desk, however the quantity will depend upon the dimensions of the sheet you discover, and the piece you’re masking!
  • Darkish Wax | optionally available
  • Wax Bush | optionally available
  • Sharpening Brush | optionally available

Then, you simply want your piece that you simply’re eager to gild!

You’ll be able to selected a chunk of furnishings, or a smaller decor merchandise; this gilding tutorial will work properly on any of them!

For my functions, I selected to gild a bamboo espresso desk that I discovered on Fb Market.

When you’re out there for a gold bamboo desk, listed here are a couple of related choices: Wayfair, Overstock, Wayfair #2, One Kings Lane, Bellacor, 1800 Lighting, Wayfair #3.

I had been very impressed by golden bamboo items like these bar stools shared by Ballard Designs.

As soon as your whole provides are prepared, you may get to work!

Tips on how to Use Gold Leaf to Guild:

Right here’s the earlier than!

Step One: Apply your Measurement

Use a paintbrush to use your measurement to a workable space and let it sit for about quarter-hour.

You need it to really feel a bit cheesy (just like the again of a sticky be aware) however not too sticky whenever you begin the next move.

Step Two : Apply your gold leaf

Take one sheet of your gold leaf at a time and place it over the dimensions urgent it down into the adhesive. The scale will really feel nearly like a magnet pulling the leaf to it.

For a bigger furnishings piece, I discovered that it was simpler to maintain the gold leaf on the tissue paper as I positioned it onto the desk, after which to take away the tissue paper as soon as I had accomplished the preliminary placement and press down.

Step Three: Dry Brush Your Gold Leaf

This step will assist push the gold leaf into place, and it’ll additionally flake off any items that aren’t secured by the dimensions.

When you understand you’ve missed a spot, you may merely add a brand new piece of the gold leaf over that spot (if there may be already measurement there), or you may add your measurement and wait quarter-hour to fill it in.

Elective Step 4: Add darkish wax to tone down the brightness if desired.

I most popular the darker look, so I used my Annie Sloan darkish wax and my Siff brush so as to add that deep, worn coloring.

I simply love the classic French look! I hope you’re as proud of your personal gilded furnishings piece as I’m with mine!

Discover extra nice inspiration under, and don’t neglect to avoid wasting your spot at my Bespoke Design Retreat for September 18-21!

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