DIY Gold Foil Prints

I’ve been in the process of creating a gallery wall for my new bedroom, and I knew that I wanted to incorporate some typography designs in a gold foil finish. Since my printer does not print with gold ink (alas!), I had to find a way to get that shiny, metallic finish on the designs I wanted. A few google searches later, I was pleasantly surprised by how easy the solution was!

How I Did It

There are several DIY gold foil techniques, many of which use some form of adhesive to adhere the foil to your project. The technique I followed, however, uses heat.

Step 1: Find or create your design
I selected a couple of typography designs as well as some patterns that I really liked on Pinterest. I then enlisted the help of my brother, who is currently studying graphic design, to recreate a printable version of what I envisioned on Adobe InDesign.

Step 2: Print your design with a laser printer
It is important that you use black toner to print your design. You will not get the same results if you print your design using other toner colors or if you use an ink-jet printer.

Step 3: Apply the foil to your design using heat
I purchased some gold Deco Foil from Amazon for $5.49. It comes with five 6″ x 12″ sheets of foil.Screen Shot 2016-07-10 at 4.58.53 PM

I cut the gold foil to the size of my design and placed it gold side up.

Cover the foil with a piece of parchment paper. Using medium heat and firm pressure, iron over your design on top of the parchment paper for 30 seconds. The heat from the iron will cause the foil to adhere to the toner. I had to play around with the settings on the iron to find the heat level that worked the best without melting or burning everything.

After I removed the iron, I could see the areas of my design that reacted with the heat and adhered to the gold foil.
2016-07-03 10.45.37

Step 4: Allow the foil to completely cool

Step 5: Carefully peel off the remaining foil
2016-07-03 10.50.54

If you look closely, there are some parts of the design where the gold foil did not completely adhere to the toner. This was most likely due to inconsistent heating with the iron. To avoid this in the future, you could use a laminator instead of an iron. Other than that, I love the way it turned out!

Step 6: Frame and enjoy!
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