Today I’m taking a break from all things Halloween and sharing a tutorial on how to master applying gold leaf—on light switch covers. If you follow me on Instagram, you saw my failed first attempt at using gold leaf. I used loose gold leaf sheets (first mistake) and Mod Podge (second, bigger mistake) and the result was a gold mess.
After doing a bit of research I learned that gold leaf sheets on paper backing are much easier to apply than loose sheets. I also learned that there’s such thing a gold leaf sizing, which is specifically made for adhering gold leaf. So I went back to the craft store and picked up both said items and my second attempt was much, much better! Now, I want to apply gold leaf to everything!
Smooth the tape with your hands to make sure it’s adhered. (If you want to cover the entire switch plate with gold leaf simply skip this step.) Use the foam brush to apply a very thin coat of the gold leaf sizing to the area you want to be gold, including one of the screw heads. Allow this to dry for about 30 minutes, or until it’s dry but slightly sticky. If you drag your knuckle across it and it squeaks, then it’s ready for the gold leafing.
Use your hands to carefully press the foil onto the switch plate. Remove the paper backing. Carefully press the foil onto the switch plate. Use your fingers to press the gold leafing on to the edges.
Use the soft paint brush to remove excess gold leafing around the edges of the switch plate. Repeat and apply gold leaf to one of the screw heads.
Peel off the painters tape to reveal the hard edge. Use the soft paint brush to remove any excess gold leaf that may remain where the tape was. Allow to dry for one hour.
Use the foam brush to apply a thin, even coat of Mod Podge. Allow to dry completely, around 20 minutes.
When you install the light switch plate, place a tissue or napkin on top of the screws to prevent the screw driver from scratching the gold leafing.