How to Gold Leaf a Bowl

I’m not sure who coined the phrase “drop zone”…but I want to give them a big ol’ hug. In our house these little “drop zone” areas are very common. I think it’s because we live in such a small space and if we didn’t have designated areas for things that come into our home on a daily basis, well let’s just say I’d probably feel like I was living in an episode of Hoarders. These shelves and hooks near the entryway are great for staying organized. Remember this drop zone area I created this summer? It’s serving us very well, holding lots of jackets, bags, umbrellas, and sunglasses. But this area has never been a place for our incoming mail. Those items were always brought to a different area…

This handy watermelon bowl is great for storing items like sunglasses, stamps and keys.

Enter drop zone area #2. Yep, we’ve got another one. This is in the middle of our kitchen island, and it’s a great spot for things that need to be seen by both of us each and every day. Over the summer we had an adorable watermelon bowl to hold our incoming/outgoing mail. I still love the bowl, but with Fall officially here it was time to put away the watermelon until next summer.

So with no “fall-ish” bowl, I decided to create my own simple decorative bowl for the new season. Assemble a white bowl and a gold leaf kit to start your DIY project.

I’ve seen so many bloggers and crafters talk about gold leafing items. This whole gold leafing thing really intrigued me, but I never really knew what it was or how you actually gold-leafed anything. Now I had the perfect excuse to give gold leafing a go. I purchased a plain white bowl from HomeGoods for $3 and picked up a gold leaf kit from Michael’s for around $8. Most gold leaf kits come with an adhesive pen and a dozen sheets of gold leaf. 

The gold leaf kit came with an adhesive pen and a dozen or so sheets of gold leaf. Set your adhesive pen and gold leaf sheets aside before decorating your bowl.

I wasn’t exactly sure what kind of design I wanted to do with my gold leaf, but I did know that I wanted to keep it fairly simple. With this being my first gold leafing project, I didn’t want to try out anything too advanced. After reading some tutorials online, I found that most people said it was best to go with a messy design, because you’re not going to get any perfect lines with this stuff.

I decided to gold leaf the rim of the bowl, as well as the bottom part. Not a ton of gold, but just enough to add a hint of fall to our kitchen drop zone. I followed the directions that came with the kit and used the adhesive pen on the areas that I wanted to gold leaf. It comes out clear and in about 5 minutes it dries nice and tacky.
Cut small sheets of gold leaf and press them onto the edges of the white bowl.

I then cut small sheets of gold leaf and pressed it onto the tacky areas. It’s crazy…but the gold leaf sticks immediately. It’s actually pretty fun to press it around and get the gold leaf on there. I kind felt like I was waxing eyebrows…you know press the strip down, smooth it out, and rip it off? Okay, maybe it was just me but it felt kinda satisfying!Use a sponge to wipe around the edges of the bowl and get excess flakes off.

Once the gold leaf was on to the bowl to my liking, I took a clean sponge and wiped around the edges to get any excess flakes off. The extra pieces come right off, so things did get a little messy during this part. Allow your gold leaf decorated bowl to dry.

I let my bowl dry for a couple of hours before I started using it. I think it turned out quite nicely for my first gold leafing adventure. Very simple, with a nice hint of shimmery gold. This shimmering gold leaf bowl is great for holding items. This decorative gold leaf bowl is great on a kitchen island.

Our new gold bowl has joined this trio of items on our kitchen island. You’ll also notice that this little drop zone is actually on a wooden lazy susan. This is a new addition to our kitchen that I haven’t yet talked about here on the blog. Guys…this thing is amazing. This personalized lazy susan is stained dark with an industrial silver accent.

My aunt and cousin/bridesmaid got this gorgeous lazy susan for us as a wedding shower gift. The wood is actually from the top of a wine barrel from Sonoma. They thought it would be a nice way to remember our bachelorette trip out to wine country, and boy were they right! It’s engraved with our names and wedding date and I’m pretty obsessed with it. I know we’ll have it forever and it will always be a staple in our kitchen or dining room. This lazy susan pairs well with fresh flowers and white bowls. This gold lead decorative bowl is great for storage. As for the bowl, I’m really loving it and the gold leaf has held up very well. No gold flakes falling off whatsoever. This little bowl has actually seen a lot of action over the past few weeks as we had dozens of wedding RSVPs coming into the house. I’m actually really happy we had this little bowl for our mail because it was a nice way to keep track of all of the incoming RSVPs. Finn and I decided early on that we wanted to open each RSVP together. Kinda corny, but you only get to plan a wedding once right? So why not savor every small detail? I really enjoyed adding the new RSVPs to this little bowl, and then waiting for Finn to get home so we could both sit down and open our mail together.

The gold accents on this bowl make the it more decorative. So our new gold bowl isn’t just eye candy, but it has actually functioned well for this drop zone. And now that I know just how easy gold leafing really is…I just might start to gold leaf everything around here. I mean why the heck not? I have tons of gold leaf sheets left in my little kit, and I may as well put them to good use adding some glam around here.


 Have you ever tried gold leafing?