I think gold is kinda symbolic of a new year – all shiny and new, and it just makes you feel good, know what I mean? I decided to try my hand at gold leafing recently to add some sparkle to my desk and I’m pleased as punch with the finished results! I’m going to show you how to make Gold Leaf Desk Accessories that you’ll be proud to display! (You can totally make something similar for every room in the house – go ahead! Bling it out!)
Cute, right? Yup. I know.
If you’ve never tried gold leafing, don’t be scared! It’s a new year – time to learn something new!! It’s really not difficult, just delicate. I’ll show you how. First, gather your supplies:
Decide on your desk accessory – I chose a couple of ceramic dishes from Michael’s dollar bin last year that I’ve never put to use. You’ll also need some gold gilding or sheets of leaf, metal adhesive, and a paint brush. I used a foam one and had no issues. You can use a soft bristle brush, too. Whatever you have around will work.
And not pictured, but handy to have: latex gloves & spray sealer
Ok, ready Freddy? Let’s get to gilding!
First, decide what part of your piece you will cover in gold leaf, then lightly brush on the metal adhesive. You’ll allow this to dry until it’s just barely tacky to the touch – mine took about 10 minutes.
Once your piece is tacky, put on your latex gloves and very delicately lay on the gold leaf. Feel free to overlap it. We’ll clean it up at the end.
For my first attempt at gold leafing, I just covered the entire exterior of my dish with gold leaf. I kept applying and overlapping until it was mostly covered, like this:
Here’s where the smoothing-out process comes in. Grab a clean, dry brush (I used another foam brush) and very lightly brush off the excess gold from your piece until it’s all smooth.
It’s messy business, you know? But what a pretty mess!
For my second dish, I decided to add stripes. (I’m getting all crazy now!)
I used washi tape to make stripes on my dish and made sure to press firmly.
Then I repeated the gold leafing process – adhesive, wait until it’s tacky, apply gold leaf wearing my gloves, brush off excess.
Then I removed the washi tape to reveal gold stripes! I’m in love!!
Final (and MUCHO IMPORTANTE!) step: Spray on a clear sealant. You don’t want that pretty gold leaf to go anywhere so make sure it sticks! I used Mod Podge spray sealant.
I love my new gold leaf desk accessories! These particular dishes are just the right size for pens or Project Life cards. Wouldn’t they also be eye-catching as a business card holder?!
What would you gold leaf to add some bling? Share your ideas in the comments! (I might use one on the blog!)
I’ve seen gold leaf used on projects for years and I love it – but I’ve never used it. I must. It’s just so much fun! And I say ’embrace the gold trend while it’s here’ so I should take my own advice and make a gold leaf project happen! Love this!
Yes, you simply must! It was kinda messy, and SUPER delicate, but it was really fun to play with, and I know I’ll do more gold leaf projects soon. Embrace the gold, Jill! 🙂 I’d love to see what you create!
I think it is a great project. and your dishes came out beautiful.. I have a small chest that I am thinking about silver leafing, I’m alittle nervous but can’t wait to get started. If it comes out 1/2 as good as yours then I’ll be happy. Thanks for sharing and posting the pics.
Thanks so much Deina!! I’d love to see your chest when you get it finished. I bet it will be stunning!