Gold Leaf

What is Gold Leaf?

Gold leaf is gold that has been hammered into extremely thin sheets and is often used for gilding. In the sign making industry gold leaf is used to finish carved letters. It can also be used on glass, this technique is known as glass gilding. Gold leaf is available in a wide variety of karats and shades. 22-karat yellow gold is the most commonly used. Alternatively, there are other leaf metals available for use, such as palladium, white gold, yellow gold, and variegated leaf.

  • Custom Life Ring Lettering
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  • Gold Leaf Boat Lettering
  • Gold Leaf Address – Washington DC – 1645

How is Gold Leaf Made?

Gold leaf is made by tirelessly beating out and stretching alloy of pure gold with minuscule traces of silver and copper. An alloy about the size of a 10 yen coin becomes the size of one tatami mat with a thickness of 1-1.2/10,000 millimeters, so thin that light seems to penetrate right through it.

What is Gold Leaf Gilding?

Gilding is the application of gold to wood, metal, glass, or ceramic. It is also, by way of extension, the application of copper or another metal that imitates gold, for example, a silver layer covered with yellow varnish. Gold leafing is the technique of applying a skinny sheet, most commonly of gold, on the peak of a firm desist. This practice comprises a multitude of exchange methods, which can be carried out more or less with a great variety of substrate materials.

In the video below you can see an example of gold leaf gilding on a wood sign by Brendon J. Brandon, the master gilder and brush artist who founded Designs & Signs.

Where does the tradition of Gold Leaf Gilding come from?

Real Gilding (gold leafing) has been used back in the ancient civilizations, particularly in the art of East and South Asia and the Middle East. Historically, the process has been used back in the ancient Egyptian epoch.

Gold Leaf Lettering

Nothing else communicates the timeless beauty, elegance, and quality of gold leaf. Gold changes subtly, constantly catching light from different angles as it attracts the passerby. Gold‘s brilliance and reflective quality give all signage an unequaled distinction.

Gold Leaf Boat Lettering

Laid down by hand, gold leaf lettering has a strong connection to maritime history. The tradition of gold leafing has carried its beauty throughout history & has proven classic through the test of time.

There are several techniques for gold leaf, one of the most widely used is ‘engine turning’. Engine turned gold leaf is when a soft fabric is pressed against the leaf and burnished in a circular motion to give it a scaled texture; this technique reflects water and natural sunlight beautifully.

Cruise in style with amazing gold leaf boat lettering on the transom of your yacht. Show off your fishing trawler with a flashy gold leaf boat name and custom graphics. If you have a classic wooden boat we can letter it by hand with a traditional 23 karat gold leaf name.

How is Gold leaf lettering applied on the boats?

To paint the lettering, we start by pouncing or using another technique to develop the lettering outline. We then apply the gold leaf paint and allow it to dry, then we focus on outlining and/or shading to provide a stark contrast between the gold leaf lettering and the background paint. This process takes a few hours to complete, and additional time to add stainage or improve the lettering.

Gold Leaf Signs Everywhere!

We design and manufacture custom gold leaf signs of every sort and variety, offering only the best materials available to our customers. We create dimensional sigs from many different materials. Granite, sign foam, cedar, and other types of exotic lumber are available. We can sandblast letters into granite for your community entrance sign or office park. We manufactured sanblasted HDU Signs and Routed HDU signs as well. We can even make HDU signs with v-cut incised lettering, or sandblasted cedar signs. Your dimensional sign can also be mounted with custom iron scrolls and brackets. We also offer on-site gilding services for sandblasted lettering into existing granite and stone. We also manufacture pin-mounted dimensional letters which can be cast or cut with a water-jet. Any of our dimensional signs and letters can be finished with 23 karat gold leaf to create the perfect gold leaf sign for your community or business!

From start to finish, we bring your ideas to life.  Give us your sketch and let us do the rest. We’ll design your perfect gold leaf sign. Your home or business will stand out from the crowd. Draw in new customers with a beautiful gold leaf sign on your shop window. Impress your guests at home with traditional gold leaf numbers on your glass transom! Let us install a fantastic dimensional sign for your business or community and we’ll finish it with 23 karat gold leaf by hand!


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