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Gilding Flakes-Tips And Ideas

Updated on July 1, 2020
linfcor profile image

Professional scrapbook artist, paper crafter, and author, I have taught people how to make family memories into legacies for 20 years.

Gilding Flakes Offer New Opportunities

There are so many ways that you can use gilding flakes. This card uses stripes of double sided tape to greate stripes
There are so many ways that you can use gilding flakes. This card uses stripes of double sided tape to greate stripes

Gilding Flakes

Gilding flakes are one of the most popular products in paper crafts today! They add an elegant shine to any paper craft where they are used. They are easy to work with and very satisfying.

Gilding is the process where you add a metallic flake, leaf or powder to a surface. In our case the surface will be paper.

They come as a single color like gold silver and copper. There are also gilding flakes that come in mixed colors as well. You can take some of the single colors and create your own unique mixed colors. It's up to you how you use them.

Gilding flakes are are an ultra thin metal alloy.

The flakes are packaged tightly in light plastic containers. At first it feels like there isn't much in the container, but when you open it , you will see how much product there actually is. It is like opening a Christmas package ! All that beautiful project literally puffs out of the jar !

It is recommended that you store your flakes in a plastic container. It is almost impossible to get those flakes back into the jar.

They basically work with anything tacky......glue or tape(double sided ) or double sided adhesive sheets.

You can gild anything that will hold adhesive. Here are a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Gild letters using stick it ( a double sided adhesive sheet) and dies
  • Take those dull alphabet sticks to new glam stickers
  • Gild that dull vase sitting in your closet
  • Make your phone case shine with a new design

Gilding flakes come in several single colors or premixed combinations
Gilding flakes come in several single colors or premixed combinations

Gilding Flake Tips

Before getting started with gilding flakes, there are a few things to think about. Although the results are beyond belief, this product can at times be messy. Here are a few tips to get you started off on the right foot.

  1. Turn off the ceiling fan, windows and window air conditioner. Any movement in the room will cause a gilding flake storm. These flakes are so light, they will flutter everywhere.
  2. Have a shallow pan of soapy water if you are using adhesives, especially gilding glue with stamps. You will want to get your stamps cleaned right away.
  3. Rub-It-Scrub-It Pads are the perfect burnishing tool. Cut a hand sized piece from the pad to help burnish the tiniest flakes. Be gentle when using the pad. You are just rubbing them on, not scrubbing them in.
  4. Some of the flakes may get stuck in the pad. You can keep a separate pad with each jar of flakes. That way you can re use them.
  5. Use a box lid to work in or minimally a piece of 12" by 12" scrap paper to catch any left over flakes. They can be used again.
  6. Be generous when apply the flakes to adhesives. Take it a pinch at a time. Although these flakes go a long way, you will want to have full coverage. Patting them on may work better than rubbing them in.
  7. Always store them at room temperature. They will swell up and give you more product.

Gilding Flakes Combo

Nuvo Gilding Flakes - Radiant Gold, Silver Bullion & Sunkissed Copper - 3 Item Tonic Studios Bundle
Nuvo Gilding Flakes - Radiant Gold, Silver Bullion & Sunkissed Copper - 3 Item Tonic Studios Bundle
This is the perfect set for anyone who is interested in gilding. I was very surprised when I got mine. These containers are really packed full of fluffy flakes. You can use them as a single color or combine some to create your own unique mix. The price point on this package is really economical as they will last for a long time.

Burnish With An Adhesive Eraser

An adhesive eraser works well to burnish the gilding flakes onto your project. It brings up fine details where you did not apply glue

How To Adhere Gilding Flakes

More then likely, you have the things that you need to start working with gilding flakes.


There are many different types of gilding glues but they all have common properties. The glue is applied to the project and allowed to dry. Once dry, the glue remains tacky. The gliding flakes are applied and patted down. A dry brush or sponge is used to remove the excess flakes to be saved for later use. The image is then revealed.

Some of the most popular gilding glues include Indigo Blu Flitter Glue and Cosmic Shimmer Flake and Glitter Glue.

You can use a regular glue pen, but it needs to be a tacky glue. Neuvo Glue Pen is one that will be good for gilding pen techniques. If you use a fast drying glue, the technique will not work.

All of these glues can be used with stamps, but you need to have a container of warm water nearby. That way they can start soaking as soon as you are done working with them.


Double sided tape is another way to apply gilding flakes. This is a perfect idea for scrapbook pages and greeting cards. Add an accent anywhere you would like. Since double sided adhesive tapes come in different widths, you can create all kinds of different accents

Adhesive Sheets

Sheets like Stick It can also be used to create gilding flake projects. Think about cutting shapes and covering them with gilding flakes. You can create basic shapes as well as things like labels. Look at your dies and you can really get creative. Cut animals, flowers and a lot more.

Sticky Embossing Powder

This is a special embossing powder that you can use to adhere gilding flakes when you want to stamp an image and create some special treatments. You use it just like any other embossing powder. The only difference is that it creates a sticky surface for the gilding flakes to stick to.

Gilding Work Space

You need to minimally have a 12" by 12" piece of card stock as a work space under your gilding projects. That way you can save any of the excess flakes to save for later. You can also work out of a box lid or a tray. All of the left over pieces can be saved. You can also use a coffee filter under small projects

Sticky Embossing Powder

Ranger Sticky Embossing Powder, 21 grams (EPJ35275)
Ranger Sticky Embossing Powder, 21 grams (EPJ35275)
This is the perfect embossing powder for gilding techniques. You simply SZtamp the image of your choice with Versamark ink , then cover it with the sticky embossing powder. Heat the powder which leaves a stickiness that you can cover with your gilding flakes. Easy and satisfying technique. This jar will last for quite a while

Never sneeze or cough when you are using gilding flakes ! They will scatter far beyond your work area

Blender Brushes

Another tool that will help you get the best results with the gilding flakes are the blender brushes. You get an even application on your cardstock. The brushes can also be used for other media. They can be used with stencils, embellishment mousse, and embossing folders.

I have seen the brushes as mini sets as well as dual ended sets. The mini sets are more economical in price.

If you have some blusher cosmetic brushes , they can be used as well,

Mixing Gilding Flakes

Set aside a special plastic container to house all your left over flakes. Just take the left over flakes and mix them together. You will come up with a custom lovely mix of your own

With a small tacky glue pen, you can a gilded border around your project to add some extra bling

Gild An Embossed Piece Of Cardstock

It is so easy to add some extra bling to an embossed paper.

  1. Emboss a piece of card stock
  2. Using a tacky glue stick, apply glue carefully to the embossed area
  3. Allow the glue to dry for a second or two
  4. Apply the gilding flakes, rubbing them carefully into the surface with a stiff brush
  5. Brush away any excess flakes

Keep Your Flakes From Flying

Work your project in a shoe box or a small cardboard box and you will be able to keep your flakes confined to one area

Gilded Backgrounds Using Die Cuts And Stencils

Make A Simple Gilded Background

It is so simple to make a vintage gilded striped background for a card. You need a piece of card stock for your base, some gilding flakes in the color of your choice, some double sided tape in the width that you want.


  1. Using the double sided tape, lay stripes diagonally across the card stock. How many stripes and the width between them is up to you.
  2. Cit the edges off the stripes of tape at the end of the piece of card stock.
  3. Remove the top layer off the stripes of tape.
  4. Sprinkle the gilding flakes across the top of the card
  5. Burnish them into the card stock with your fingers.
  6. Brush the excess gilding flakes off with a stiff brush

You can use a special gilding glue, but any tacky glue will work. When using stamps that have a lot of detail, or are small. use a tacky glue pen

It is so easy to use gilding flakes. All you are doing is burnishing (rubbing them on )
It is so easy to use gilding flakes. All you are doing is burnishing (rubbing them on )

Stamping With Gilding Flakes

Yes, you can stamp almost any image and use your gilding flakes.


Card stock in color of your choice

Anti static tool

Sticky embossing powder

Stamp of your choice

Acrylic Block

Versamark Ink

Stiff brush


  1. Stamp the image onto some card stock with the versa mark ink.
  2. Apply the sticky embossing powder and tap off the excess
  3. Heat the embossing powder until it appears shiny
  4. Apply the gilding flakes to the card stock and burnish or rub it on.
  5. Remove any excess using a stiff brush

Note: Anytime you stamp with glue of any kind, it is important to wash the glue off the stamp right away

Wash Your Stamp Right Away After Stamping With Glue

If you are stamping with glue pen to use gilding flakes, it is important to wash your stamp while the glue is getting sticky. Wash the stamp with a toothbrush with a tiny bit of dish detergent. Rinse the stamp and pat dry. It is important to get that glue off the stamp asap

Guilding With Stencils

Super easy technique with amazing results. You will be very surprised at all the options that you have with this technique.



Double Sided Tape Sheets


Gilding Flakes

Rub It Scrub It Pad



  1. Cut the double sided sticky sheet to the desired size.
  2. Adhere one side of the sticky sheet to the cardstock
  3. Peel the release paper where you are stenciling and hang onto it
  4. Place the stencil on the sticky paper and burnish it onto the sticky paper with the release sheet.
  5. Place the gilding flakes over the adhesive
  6. Push the flakes down and rub them in well.
  7. Use the Rub It Scrub It pad to burnish the flakes in. Rub it in with small circular strokes. It should look very smooth
  8. You can then use some glitter to fill in the spaces left by the stencil

In Place of A Scrubby

You can use a toothbrush to work the gilding flakes onto your project if you do not have a scrubby

Water And Gilding Flake Technique 1

Water And Sticky Embossing Powder Technique

Could you ever think of applying sticky embossing powder and water to create a beautiful gilded technique. It is amazing and lots of fun with loads of options.


  • Heavy weight card stock
  • Sticky embossing powder
  • Different types of clean paint brushes
  • Water
  • Craft Heat gun
  • Soft blending brush
  1. With a clean paint brush, brush some water onto the card stock. You can be creative with the kind of brush strokes and the paint brushes that you use.
  2. Pour the sticky embossing powder right onto the wet card
  3. Tap any excess off and replace it back into the jar
  4. Heat the powder until it is dry, but still sticky
  5. Apply the gilding flakes to the embossing powder
  6. Burnish the flakes onto the card
  7. Brush any excess flakes away from the project
  8. Admire your creatiivity

More Water And Gilding Flake Ideas

Final Thoughts On Gilding Flakes

More than likely when it comes to gilding flakes, you have probably thought about greeting cards and scrapbook pages. But why stop there? Many other projects can benefit from a bit of glitter. Think about journal pages and altered books. How about vases? What about your home decor? Where can you think about adding a golden touch? We'a love to hear about your gilded ideas. Happy Crafting!

© 2018 Linda F Correa

Tell us About Your Gilding Flake Experiences, Ask A question or leave a comment

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    Post Comment
    • linfcor profile imageAUTHOR

      Linda F Correa 

      21 months ago from Spring Hill Florida

      Never thought about using them with mandalas. What a great idea !

    • Jessie L Watson profile image

      Jessie Watson 

      21 months ago from Wenatchee Washington

      Cool! Gold and harvest colors are my fav no matter what the season. These will be a wonderful addition to my mandala collages.


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