Gemstone Review – Gilding Supplies – Type Of Leaf And Tools Used In Gilding – agate gemstone

Gemstone Review – Gilding Supplies – Type Of Leaf And Tools Used In Gilding – agate gemstone
agate gemstone –

Types of Leaf:

Gilding leaves are probably the most basic of supplies in this art. These are more or less the same, but packaged differently. For example, a loose leaf book or aluminium leaf is 5.5 inches sq with each leaf separated by a paper. Most gilding supplies providers generally sell 25 leaves per book. To handle it, simply roll the paper back, lay it on the surface, rub over the back and roll off the tissue leaving the leaf exposed.

The patent leaf book has each leaf mounted on a piece of white tissue paper which makes it very easy for handling. You can pick up the paper with the paper edge without touching the leaf, cut off pieces as required so as to get less waste, lay over the surface, rub over the paper backing and peel it off like a transfer. This is available at most gilding supplies stores and works well for large objects such as furniture but not heavily ornamental objects.

Ribbon leaf is just like patent leaf where one leaf is laid after another consequently for 50 to 75 meters. Each leaf can be laid separately by rubbing the paper backing and peeling off. These are best used in gilding ceilings and large surfaces where one wants to save time when laying in strips.

Agate Stone Tools

Another important aspect of gilding supplies is tools. The agate stone point is used to press the gold leaf into the support. The highly smooth surface of the agate stone lets you fix and polish the gold leaf without ugly nicks or wrinkles.

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Gilding knife

This is a long straight edged knife used to cut leaf into manageable or appropriate size. The knife is not sharp but must have a very clean, smooth edge free of the smallest imperfections to avoid tearing the leaf. Like most gilding implements and supplies, the blade should not be touched with fingers otherwise it has to be degreased only with alcohol.

Gilder’s tip

This is a flat brush with a single, or double, layer of hairs held together by a flat card used to move gold leaf and lay it onto the surface to be gilded. Modern gold leaf is much thinner than historic leaf and cannot be touched. The tip is made slightly oily by rubbing a little petroleum jelly onto the skin on the back of the hand and then running the tip over the spot a few times. This is also available easily at gilding supplies vendors.


This is a flat surface on which to lay and cut the gold leaf. The cushion is typically a rectangular board with a cotton or felt padding covered with suede. You may find different types at the gilding supplies store but those that measure about 5 or 6 by 10 inches in size are easier to use.


This is a very smooth stone held by a wooden handle used to polish the finished gilding to a bright finish.

– Gilding Supplies – Type Of Leaf And Tools Used In Gilding


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