HOW TO: ADD GOLD LEAF TO PLACE CARDS
Okay, let’s talk gold leaf. There are few other ways to elevate a plain piece of paper like adding touches of metallic, eye-catching gold. And the easiest and (probably) cheapest way to do that is by adding gold leaf.
But to be honest, it is not the easiest thing to work with. It can get stuck to EVERYTHING- just ask my desk that now has permanent gold leaf stuck to it. And the directions on the glue bottle aren’t the best in my opinion. So I’m going to walk you through exactly how I apply gold leaf, through one my most recent projects- place cards.
Metal Leaf Sheets- Gold
Metal Leaf Adhesive
Parchment Paper (or anything you want to use to cover your work space)
Cheap Paint Brush
1-2 Small Foam Paint Brushes
Before you start your project, you’ll want to lay out parchment paper over your workspace. We”ll start with cutting gold leaf sheets into smaller pieces. Depending on how large of an area you want to cover with gold leaf, you’ll cut them into pieces that are just larger than that. For me, I only need tiny little rectangle pieces, so that’s how I cut them (about 1/2” x 1”).
Next we’re going to apply the adhesive. This glue will ruin your paintbrushes if you don’t wash them right away, so I suggest to just use a cheap throwaway brush. You’re going to dip your brush into the glue and apply just a thin swipe to your paper. For these placecards, I randomly applied the glue in small strokes at the top and bottom of my paper.
On the bottle, it says to wait until the glue goes from white to clear (about 30 minutes) before applying the gold leaf. However, I have never been able to get the gold to stick when I wait this long. So instead I put the gold leaf on pretty much right away. So no need to wait longer than 5 minutes for the glue to dry.
Place a strip of your gold leaf, gold facing down, onto the area where you applied the adhesive.
Take one of your sponge brushes and just press down on the leaf to make sure it really sticks.
Now this is where you’re going to wait a little bit. Once the leaf is on the paper, I wait about 30-45 minutes. To test if they’re ready, just pull gently up on the orange backing paper and if the gold leaf sticks to your project paper, you’re ready to remove them.
Remove the backing paper from each strip of gold leaf by pulling it away from your project paper.
Once the backing paper is gone, your gold leaf should be adhered to the project paper. There will be some flappy spots so the best way to get the extras away is by using sponge brush. I made a video so you can see exactly how I do this!
And that’s it! Have any questions for me? Feel free to ask a question or if you have any other advice in the comments!