We love adding the beauty of real gold to make something ordinary spectacular. For this project, a little gold leaf goes a long way, and Dad will have something truly special to brighten his shaving routine! The gold leaf and this technique also work great for journals, planners, wallets, key fobs and more.
Step 1: What You'll Need
1-inch wide foam brush for applying size (adhesive)
22kt Patent Gold Leaf - book of 25 leaves
Kölner Miniatum Size
Kölner Burnishing Chamois
Small, soft brush (a make up brush can work well)
Stencil with cut-out letters to fit your kit (we used Yupo)
You can find the gold leaf, size and gilding supplies where Sepp Gilding Workshop products are sold
Leather or vegan leather grooming kit
A Note on the Products
22kt gold leaf in patent form – this gilding project relies on genuine gold leaf, which is soft and malleable and will cling to a flexible surface. Patent leaf includes a backing paper for each gold leaf, making it easy to use.
Kölner Miniatum Size is designed for gilding flexible surfaces such as leather/vegan leather, vellum, parchment, paper and fabric. If you’re working on a porous surface you can apply this size multiple times to seal and build up a shinier gilding surface. The kit we used has a porous leather cover so we used a couple of coats of Kölner Miniatum Size. Miniatum is also fun to use for free-hand lettering with a fine artist’s brush.
Step 2: Stencil and Size
Position the stencil on the side of the kit (tape in place if necessary). Pour a small amount of Miniatum into a clean container. Load your foam brush lightly with Miniatum (you can dab excess onto paper), then stipple a light coating. Remove the stencil and wash. Allow the Miniatum to dry about half an hour.
Step 3: Second Coat of Size
Re-position the stencil over the letter and apply a second layer of size to create an opaque coating as above. Remove and wash your stencil. Let the Miniatum dry for half an hour.
Step 4: Time to Gild!
If you like, you can mask around the initial to keep the gold from potentially sticking where you don’t want it– genuine gold is so soft it loves to cling to some soft surfaces.
Fold back the top pages of the book of 22kt patent gold leaf to expose the topmost gold leaf. Pick up the gold leaf by holding the paper backing without touching the gold. Place the gold leaf face down over the initial – it should cover the letter completely. Rub the backing paper to ensure all the leaf bonds with the size. Continue until all the letters are gilded.
Step 5: Cleaning and Polishing the Gold
After the design is completely covered with gold, gently pass the Burnishing Chamois over the gold leaf – your letters will emerge, and the excess flakes can be kept for future projects.
Get ready to surprise Dad with a gift that reminds him he’s as good as gold every day!