UPDATE: After responding to many many questions here and on my other social media pages, I decided to create a store and list items there regarding all that I do. I have created a link on my store called "Furniture Leafing" where you can find item suggestions if you are looking to leaf your own furniture piece. I truly want to help fellow DIYers like myself create something just as magical as I did. ;) To visit my store, simply CLICK HERE.
My Champagne Taste's blog...
That's when I opened the box and read the sticker... Reality set in that this stuff is thinner than I imagined.
After getting my supplies I was ready to get started. Part of those supplies... primer. What to get? The blogging world suggested Zinsser and swore by its greatness to cover stained wood because I DID NOT want to sand either piece of furniture. I'd still be working on those things if I did. Although, I did sand down smalls portions of the chest because the shiny coating was laid on kinda thick in some places and you could see puddles and drips so I sanded those smooth. I went to Home Depot and the sales person suggested Glidden Gripper Primer. They told me it could stick to anything, had less of an odor that that of the Zinsser AND it was cheaper. When I saw that it came in grey, I was sold. So, I only bought 1 pint of it and was able to cover both pieces with it. I only used about half of it. I was amazed at how it stuck to the glossy surfaces of my chest and nightstand. FYI: I rolled this stuff on. Best route to go in my opinion because it gives your furniture a smooth appearance.
Since my primer was grey in color I decided not to paint it because I planned to paint it grey. There you have yet another skipped step in my process. I didn't have a problem with that. I also decided to spray paint (2 coats) the sides of my drawers (Krylon Ballet Slipper) pink just to add a little interest when the drawers are open.
I left my painted pieces for the day with my mind prepared to start leafing the very next day. The free time I used to do this project was a couple hours after work. So when I got home the next day, I decided to do a little test area on the top of my nightstand so that way I could see how long it would take for the sizing (adhesive) to get to the right tackiness and how long it would take for me to leaf a certain area... this WAS my first leafing project. I used the cheapest brushes I could find at Home Depot to apply my sizing. I bought a few because I didn't want to clean them... The sizing dries in a short amount of time and makes them hard and unusable. The sizing does have a thin consistency when you put it on your brush but goes on a surface very sticky (like pancake syrup) so it will drip from your brush if your brush is full. I only used the foam brushes once or twice because they hold the sizing TOO well and caused puddles (and frustration) when applying the sizing. You don't want puddles because those areas will take longer to become the tackiness you need.
Once the leaf is placed it is very forgiving because it will mold to whatever it falls on (that has sizing on it). I literally used a dry blush brush that I never used to pat my leaf into place. I saw on someone else's blog that said they did the same thing. I thought, what a way to save more money. :)
I let the little area on my nightstand dry overnight, ready to start the next day. Since my test area took me literally 3-5 minutes to complete I decided to apply my sizing to a large area of my chest... the top, top half of one side and most of the front along with the face of the top drawer... because I wanted to work on it for around an hour or so. Here's the finished product of a short evening's work. The first photo is without the flash and the other is with flash so you can see how I laid the leaf. You can also see that I had yet to brush the extra leaf away in a lot of spots.
Here's the top of the chest after I applied the leaf and removed the excess with my blush brush.
I worked a little bit each day, and hour here and there after work. By the end of the week I was done and ready to seal. I used a rub on glossy polyurethane which was very easy to apply. I just used an old t-shirt to apply it. Here are some photos I took when I applied polyurethane to the chest alone...
I hadn't applied the polyurethane to my drawers just yet.
Now, adding polyurethane to the drawers (very slightly) dulled the super shiny-ness of the aluminum leaf but it still shined.
Now, back in its' room... I absolutely LOVE the outcome!
The drawer pulls and mirror shown above the chest were spray painted to match. I actually applied some rub 'n buff to the pulls after seeing the photo below. I thought it would add that little bit of umph. I think I may do the same to the mirror. Oh and the mirror was a $20 craigslist find. :)
|Note: Be sure to wear gloves when applying Rub 'n Buff because it gets under your nails and can be hard to wash off.|
Anyhow, I think the outcome is absolutely gorgeous. I actually lined a couple of drawers with paper using Mod Podge. This was my first time working with Mod Podge and I ended up having a few bubbles underneath my paper. Lesson learned. The photo shows the paper a little lighter than what it is in person. It's blue-green in color and complements the silver and pink quite well.
UPDATE: I finished the other drawers with vinyl. JoAnns had some on clearance so I snagged up a couple of rolls. It was easier to use since it already had a sticky back. I just cut to fit and layed them in the drawers. So much easier.
So what do you all think?! I LOVE IT!!!!!!!
Here's the nightstand...
Supplies Used (for both chest & nightstand):
About 250 aluminum leaf 5.5"x5.5" sheets
Rolco 8oz Quick Dry Sizing (I used about half)
1 pint Glidden Gripper Primer in Grey (I used about 1/2 pint total)
1 can Krylon Ballet Slipper spray paint (glossy)
Minwax Wipe On Polyurethane
Rub 'n Buff
Cheap bristle and sponge brushes
Soft blush brush
* Windless area to work that can get messy *