| |

Gold Leaf Stencil Art and Honest House Photos

*Thank you to Cutting Edge Stencils for sponsoring this post.*

Things have been so busy with the new house that I haven’t done any fun craft projects lately. And even though making super quick and stressful decisions about $10,000 expenses is crazy fun, I kinda miss the quick and easy projects that provide instant gratification. I’ve been itching to gold leaf something for a while now, so I decided to try and gold leaf with a stencil and make some simple, shiny art.

The good news is that I made simple shiny art. The bad news is that I still haven’t gotten to gold leaf anything.

So do you want to know how NOT to make gold leaf stencil art?

stenciling with gold leaf

…with gold leaf. Were’t expecting that, were you? Me neither.

I thought this would work, I really did. I thought it would be quick and easy. I figured I’d just adhere my stencil to the canvas, put the gold leaf glue in the stencil design, add the gold leaf, pull up the stencil, and ta-da…perfect gold art. But no, it didn’t work like that. I tried a few different techniques, and nada.

So here’s how you should make gold leaf stencil art.

golden stenciling

With gold paint. I know, mind-blowing right? It’s not quite the project I was hoping for, but if it works, it works.

Supplies –

First, paint the canvas white.

painting a white canvas white

This seems like a silly step because the canvas is already white, but it’s actually very important. If you mess up and haven’t painted first, then there’s really no fixing it. If you painted then all it takes is a craft brush and some touch up paint to make your mistakes disappear forever.

Next, use the spray adhesive on the back of the stencil and stick it to your canvas. (The spray adhesive isn’t completely necessary, but it does make life easier.)


Then get to stenciling. (Here is a link to the stencil I used from Cutting Edge Stencils.)

golden stenciling

Dab your brush in the paint and then onto your canvas, making sure to use THIN coats (do multiple coats if you must).

Finally, pull off the stencil and make touch-ups as needed.

picture ledge

Here is a side by side comparison of the real gold leaf (left) and gold leaf paint (right).

gold leaf vs. gold leaf paint

They’re not the same, but they’re similar. If you look at the first “E” in awesome you can see they are the exact same…the gold leaf paint looks like the gold leaf at max shine all the time, basically.

gold leaf art

I’m not quite sure what I’m going to do with it (I was really just practicing for a bigger gold leaf project I’m about to start) so I was moving it around the house trying to get a good, clean, pinterest friendly picture. As I was snapping photos I thought to myself “Look how clean my house looks!” Then I felt guilty and thought “Don’t be a jerk Ashley, tell them the truth”. So I snapped a few more honest pictures. That first pic of the sign on the picture ledge? Here it is from a different angle…

messy foyer

The boxes of stuff for the new house are getting ridiculous, the kitchen cabinets are torn apart because we are repainting them to sell, and it’s just generally more chaotic than those nice, clean, closely cropped pictures.

That picture of it on the plank wall? Here ya go….

messy kitchen and dining room

Wait, I have one more. Pretty, right? I must really have my crap together.

Gold Leaf Stencil Art

Haha….about that….

a little bit of honesty

So the “wake up and be awesome” motto doesn’t quite ring true around here…I don’t so much wake up as get woken up, and instead of “be awesome”, I “be sleepy”, “be running late” or “be looking around wondering if we got robbed and vandalized last night, but then remembering that’s just the way my house looks these days”. But wake up and be awesome sounds like a good thing to strive for.


Similar Posts


  1. Hey, you can still be awesome and wake up to a mess–we’ve all been there! At least you have an excuse :)

  2. This is why you are always my favorite blogger. Thank you so much for sharing your real life mess!!! Your house is still gorgeous even with the mess:) Mine is just mess! haha. Cute project too, I can see myself trying to do a gold leaf stencil like that so thanks for saving me the frustration!

  3. Bless your cotton for posting the real life pics along with the Pinterest ones. We love you for that. And for mucking up a craft first so that we don’t have to. :)

  4. Burglars sneaking in a window whilst you are out; “Hey Dude, this place is already done over. Let’s go next door.”
    Nice stencil though! Don’t you love when an idea just doesn’t pan out and you have to go to plan B? It looks great over the bed.

  5. You are awesome no matter what your house looks like! And that mess is nothing compared to some I’ve seen (and made, lol) The gold paint looks so much better than the gold leaf. Do you know why there’s such a difference?

  6. Ashley, your blog is so much more interesting and inspirational than fancy house pictures. I can get my house to look like those shots – only before I move in and live there. You can always stage some place with only 5 things in the room. But you live with the towel that kept you warm as you got into bed, your hair clips that are left on cords and anything else, and papers that somehow jump out of perfect stacks to die all over your room when you’re not looking.
    That’s for waking up and being awesome!

  7. It makes me feel better to see your honest pictures. Looking at most blogs makes me feel a little inadequate, but yours makes me feel normal.

  8. Hi, Ashley–love the way your quote turned out! I have two questions regarding the Precious Metals: are they made with mica, or metal flakes? If they’re made with metal, have you noticed any tarnishing (meaning I should seal it if I use it)? Thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *