Imitation gold leaf is suitable for most genuine gold leaf applications. The various lacquers available for use with the metal leaf can sometimes produce indistinguishable results between the two.
There are also specific advantages of using the more cost effective imitation gold leaf. The metal leaf is slightly thicker than the premium gold leaf, this allows for metal leaf to be handled with your fingers without the sheet breaking. The finish on the imitation gold leaf when coupled with a lacquer is very difficult to tell apart from the real gold leaf when put side by side in similar applications.
We offer various forms of imitation gold leaf, from flakes, rolls and sheets. We stock varying colours and shades of imitation metal flakes. We offer both standard and premium Italian imitation gold leaf in sheet form. We offer sheets in various quantities from 25 sheet booklets to boxes of 10,000 leaves. Our imitation gold leaf also comes in varying thicknesses depending on which shade is required (usually between 95mm and 160mm).
The origins of imitation gold leaf are sparse. Origins of the leaf are generally attributed to the industrial era when the emerging middle class created high demand for cheaper forms of labour.
The specific "shade number 2" colour achieved in imitation gold is a combination of two alloys, 85% copper and 15% zinc. This shade has a shine and look closely mirroring 22k genuine gold leaf. Imitation gold must also have the same protection applied as genuine gold leaf, especially in outdoor applications, a lacquer must be applied. The lacquers do provide an aging process that attributes its genuine look.
Handling the leaf does call for some sort of tool such as a gilding knife to prevent any breakage. A gentle hand and a flat level surface is usually more than enough to prevent most common breaks and mishaps. The adhesives and various lacquers also play a part in getting the required finish, such as using a base coat and a top coat to gain a predicted weathered cracked finish.