A Complete Guide to Gold Leafing

Have you ever wondered what gives the Statue of Liberty’s flame its colour? It’s a half-million dollars worth of gold leaf that makes the flame glitter and glow!

Although you see gold leafing most often in architecture around the world, it can look great in your own home as well! Gold leafing is a design technique that adds some shine to your home decor.

Are you wondering how to add gold leaf to your interior design? We’ll break it down for you in this helpful guide.

What Is Gold Leaf?

Gold leaf is gold that has been hammered into very thin sheets. The final product is only about 12 microns thick! Just like gold, gold leaves come in different karat weights and colours.

gold leaf

Materials Needed to Guild

Gilding is the term used to describe adding gold leaf to something. Before you begin adding gold leaf to an object, make sure to have all the materials you need to gild ready.

Buying gold leaf for your project isn’t as expensive as you may think! To save money, try out imitation gold leaf. This is one of the more popular gold leafing options because it has the appearance of the real deal but is made out of more common alloys.

Gold leaf comes in packs of different quantities of sheets. You can buy just one sheet or many depending on your project.

In addition to the gold leaf, you will need gilding glue like our MAS Gold Leaf Glue. Make sure to also gather gilding brushes and wax paper. You may want to use painter’s tape if you are gilding a specific part of an object.

Gold Leafing Techniques

Preparing the object’s surface is crucial to the proper application of the gold leaf. The object needs to be clean and dry before you can apply the gold leaf glue. Tape off the areas you don’t want to gild with painter’s tape.

You can apply the gold leaf glue with either a spray or a brush. If you use a brush for the gold leaf glue application, make sure it is high quality. If you are spraying the gold leaf glue, use quick, short sprays to ensure an even coating.

After applying the leafing glue to the object, take the sheet of gold leaf and place it where you want to gild. Lay a piece of wax paper over the gold leaf and smooth it with your fingers to transfer the gold.

Gold leaf can oxidize and change colour if it doesn’t have a protective layer over it. Adding a layer of our PU Gloss #507 Clear over your gold leafing is a step you can’t skip. This will keep the gold colour intact and protect your work.

Your gilding doesn’t have to end here! As a finishing touch, you can add oil colour or MAS Exterior Wood Stain to give your gold leafing an antique look. Don’t be afraid to experiment until you achieve the results you love!

Get Gilding!

Once you know the basics of gold leafing, you can take on any gilding project your mind can dream up. Before you know it, your house will be full of this eye-catching accent!

Are you ready to bring your home pain project to life? MAS Paints can help you every step of the way. Contact our professional team today to get the process started!