Introduction: Gold Pumpkin Lantern

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!

For this stunning spin on a carved jack o’lantern, we create a natural lantern that beautifully reflects autumnal colors. This dressed-up pumpkin casts a gorgeous glow at your party table or a few can elegantly light the way to your front door!

Step 1: What You'll Need

Pumpkin approximately 8” - 10” wide

2” foam brush for applying gold size (adhesive)

Soft brush

Cotton gilding gloves

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

Sepp Gilding Workshop Variegated Red Leaf book of 25 leaves

Sepp Gilding Workshop Imitation Gold Leaf book of 25 leaves

Apple corer and sharp knife to carve pumpkin

Step 2: Apply Water-Based Size

Once you’ve prepared your pumpkin, load your foam brush and apply enough SGW Water-Based Size to leave a thin white coating all over the pumpkin. Rest the sized pumpkins on a jar lid. The SGW Size will quickly shift from milky white to glossy and clear (in about 20 minutes), then the pumpkin is ready to gild. Check that the glue feels dry but tacky.

Step 3: Gild Your Pumpkin

Tear some squares of Variegated Red Leaf into small, randomly sized pieces. Place as many as you want on the pumpkin to create a dappled effect. Once you’ve applied as many pieces of Red Variegated gold leaf as you wish, overlay the rest of the pumpkin with full squares of Imitation Gold leaf, pressing to ensure complete contact. Don’t worry about folds or wrinkles!

Step 4: Polishing Your Pumpkin

Once the pumpkin is completely covered, use your gloved hands to buff down and smooth the flakes of leaf. Finish your polishing with a soft brush and save those flakes for future fun.

Gently tuck any excess leaf at the holes into the inner surface.

Step 5: Illuminating!

Insert a battery-operated candle and your polished pumpkin is ready to glow!

Step 6: