How to apply gold and silver leaf to transform objects

Transform ordinary objects into extraordinary ones with this lightweight gilding with a gold leaf effect. Discover the world of gilding to decorate objects, artwork, cards, phones – you name it!

Restoration, antiquing, faux finishing and bookbinding are easy with this complete set of gold leaf. On the other hand, you can add some Glamorous Gold / Bling to any everyday item and turn it into a special work of art…

Step-by-step instructions for successful gilding:

  1. Prepare the surface well – your gold-plated surface will reflect any imperfections, so fill and sand to a perfect finish, then make sure the surface is clean and ready for even film adhesion.
  2. Paint the prepared surface with Pebeo Gilding Paste, a water-soluble adhesive that has a long tack period during which the foil can be attached. Porous surfaces may require more than one coat. Be careful applying the Pebeo Gold Paste smoothly as any dots and brush strokes will be obvious after the gold foil is applied! Use water to clean the gold paste from the brush.
  3. Be careful with loose foil, light cotton gloves will help, but you also need to have a quiet work space to avoid drafts wrapping the foil around you.
  4. Use a very soft squirrel hair brush to smooth the delicate foil over the object
  5. Lightly overlap the sheets and fill in any gaps with pieces of foil to achieve the desired coating effect.
  6. Finish by buffing (polishing to a shine) the surface with a soft light pencil – the gold color shines brightly, adding a beautiful rich shine.

Alternatively, you can make it very simple the first few times you gild:

  1. Gilding Brush Apply to clean, dry items and leave for approximately 15 minutes.
  2. Place the gold leaf on the object and gently brush it with a very soft squirrel brush.
  3. Depending on the shape of the surface, you may need to use smaller pieces of gold leaf to fill in the gaps.
  4. Polish with a soft cotton cloth.
  5. More gold leaf can be applied to cover any gaps.

Optionally cover the finished surface with varnish or patina to protect or change the effect. To see examples of each stage of the gilding project, visit the authors’ website.

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