Introduction: Gilded Valentine Love Box

About: I have been working with gold leaf and gilders for many years. It's a magical craft going back millenia. I love to introduce both adults and kids to the artistry of gilding with all types of leaf!

Gilding this easy project is a fun way to take an ordinary paper box and create a spectacular, gleaming box for your Valentine! We use high quality imitation Gold Leaf and colorful Tamisé Flakes from Italy. We’ll use water-based size which is ready to gild very quickly and provides a great tack for the Flakes. For extra elegance and gee-whiz factor, you can adorn your chocolates with genuine edible gold (GoldGourmet brand offers certified, edible, hygienically produced gold leaf).

Step 1: What You'll Need -

Heart-shaped paper box

Heart-shaped piece of paper to use as a mask

Small foam brush for applying size (adhesive)

Soft brush for skewing off excess leaf (optional)

Cotton gilding gloves

Sepp Gilding Workshop (SGW) Water-Based Gilding Size (glue for leaf)

SGW Primer in Red

SGW Tamisé Mix red Flakes

SGW Imitation Gold Leaf - one book (25 leaves) Heart-shaped chocolates

SGW Acrylic Clear Coat (optional)

GoldGourmet 23kt Gold Flakes (optional)

Step 2: Applying Gold Size

Using a foam brush, apply SGW Red primer over the outside and inside of the box and lid. Load your foam brush with Gilding Size and lightly coat the exterior of the box lid. Also coat the bottom of the box, inside and out, cleaning up any drips to ensure even drying. Place pieces on cans to dry.

Step 3: Let the Size Come to Tack

The size will go from milky white to clear. When it’s completely transparent, and sticky but dry, it’s ready to gild.

Step 4: Gilding Over Water-Based Size

Trace and cut a heart shape smaller than the box lid. Place your paper heart on the center of the lid, and gently press to ensure light contact with the size, especially at the edges.

Wearing cotton gloves keeps your fingers’ oils from staining the leaf. Scatter the Tamisé flakes over the lid, pressing them on until the size is completely covered. Rub and brush away the excess flakes with your gloved hands.

Step 5: Gild the Heart Shape

Carefully peel off the paper heart. Place a piece of Imitation Gold Leaf over the exposed size and press to make contact. Rub away the extra leaf.

Step 6: Gild the Box Bottom

Drape Imitation Gold Leaves over the outside and inside of the box bottom to create an extra special presentation. Brush away excess leaf with your gloved hands. If you wish, you can topcoat your box after waiting overnight.

Step 7: Fill Your Love Box!

Fill your box with tissue and chocolate hearts.

You can sprinkle GoldGourmet Edible Gold Leaf Flakes over your chocolates for an extra touch of loveliness! Happy Valentine’s Day!

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