We’ve been water gilding frames recently. It’s a prosaic process, the reward being reaped by the final, beautiful outcome!
First we make the frame, fill it and sand it.
It’s painted with Size, then five or six coats of Gesso, made from Rabbit Skin glue, French Chalk and Water.
When the layers of Gesso are white and thick, they are sanded absolutely smooth.
Next, two or three coats of Bole are applied as an underlay for the Gold Leaf. The bole is smoothed with fine Wire Wool.
The gold leaf is applied onto a watery layer of Gilder’s Bouche, made from Meths, Water and Rabbit Skin Glue.
The gold leaf is burnished with an Agate tool, the frame is painted and the artwork fitted.