DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories

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!)

DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories  |  Sweet Tea & Saving GraceCute, 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:

DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories  |  Sweet Tea & Saving GraceDecide 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!

DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories | Sweet Tea & Saving GraceFirst, 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.

DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories | Sweet Tea & Saving GraceOnce 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:

DIY GDIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories  |  Sweet Tea & Saving Graceold Leaf Desk Accessories | Sweet Tea & Saving GraceHere’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.

DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories  |  Sweet Tea & Saving GraceIt’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!)

DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories  |  Sweet Tea & Saving GraceI used washi tape to make stripes on my dish and made sure to press firmly.

DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories  |  Sweet Tea & Saving GraceThen I repeated the gold leafing process – adhesive, wait until it’s tacky, apply gold leaf wearing my gloves, brush off excess.

DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories  |  Sweet Tea & Saving GraceThen 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.

DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories  |  Sweet Tea & Saving GraceI 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?!


DIY Gold Leaf Desk Accessories  |  Sweet Tea & Saving Grace

Your Turn:

What would you gold leaf to add some bling?  Share your ideas in the comments!  (I might use one on the blog!)

11 Responses

  1. 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!

  2. 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!

  3. 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.

  4. Thanks so much Deina!! I’d love to see your chest when you get it finished. I bet it will be stunning!


I'm Kirsten & I'm happy you're here! Sweet Tea & Saving Grace supports women seeking to find balance in the busy, deepen their faith, and instill joy and love in their homes, lives, and blogs by providing encouraging and inspiring content and valuable resources. My prayer is for you to leave here better than when you came. Be blessed!



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