Metal Leaf Information
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Metal Leaf Information

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Metal Leaf Information

Composition Gold Leaf/Dutch Metal/Schlagmetal:
Composition Gold Leaf, also referred to as Dutch Metal and Schlagmetal, is imitation gold leaf made from brass, a combination of copper and zinc.

Composition Gold Leaf is available in four colors:
#1- 90% (Copper & 10% Zinc) Having the highest copper content of all composition leaf, #1 is the deepest red in color.

#2- 88% (Copper & 12% Zinc) The high copper content of #2 gives it a deep red gold tone.

#2½-85% (Copper & 15% Zinc) Average gold color imitating 22kt genuine gold leaf, #2½ is the most popular color.

#3- 82% (Copper & 18% Zinc) Lighter in color than the above colors, #3 is bright and "lemony" in color.

Aluminum Leaf/Imitation Silver:
Aluminum Leaf, also called imitation silver, is made from pure aluminum and is silver in color.
Copper Leaf is made from pure copper.

Variegated Leaf:
Variegated Leaf is metal leaf which has been treated to create colorful patterns in the leaf. 
The random patterns vary from pack to pack.

Red Variegated Leaf:
Red Variegated Leaf is made from Copper Leaf and red, orange, yellow and slight blue tones are achieved. The predominant color is red and the colors can be intense and of iridescent quality.

Blue & Green Variegated Leaf:
Blue & Green Variegated Leaf are produced from color #2 composition metal leaf and are similar in color.
The Blue Variegated Leaves are selected for a higher prominence of deep blue tones. The Green Variegated Leaves are chosen for their overall subdued and mellow shades.

Black Variegated Leaf:
Black Variegated Leaf is made from composition metal leaf color #2½ and is the most difficult color to achieve and varies greatly from pack to pack.
The added colors are black and purple with some blue and green highlights.

Copper alloy in metal leaf:
The copper alloy in metal leaf will tarnish, therefore all metal leaf must be sealed to prevent tarnishing, except Aluminum.
Aluminum leaf may get a bit darker in color without a sealer. It is best to wear gloves when handling metal leaf to avoid leaving finger prints and other residues that may cause the leaf to discolor under the sealer.

Metal Leaf Packaging

Metal Leaf:

Metal leaf is sold in units call packs containing 500, 5½ x 5½", leaves and covers 105 sq. ft. without waste or overlap. A pack is further divided into 20 books with each book containing 25 leaves separated by thin tissue paper.
The percentage of waste is based on the complexity of the object and the gilder's expertise in laying leaf.
If the surface is very ornate with deep crevices it will take more leaf than the same size area of a flat surface.

Schlagmetal and Schlagcopper:

Schlagmetal and Schlagcopper are packaged in boxes of 10,000 leaves which are subdivided into 20 units.
Each unit, wrapped in paper, contains 500 leaves with tissue paper between every 100 leaves.

Schlagaluminum is packaged in boxes of 5,000 leaves which are subdivided into 10 units. Each unit, wrapped in paper, contains 500 leaves with tissue paper between every 100 leaves.

Rolls of metal leaf are manufactured from 6¼ inch square leaves placed on a continuous length of specially treated light weight paper.
The leaves slightly overlap each other with the overlap marks occurring at 6 inch intervals on all roll sizes.
Ribbon leaf or rolls are best suited for use on flat surfaces and can be applied by hand or with a gilding wheel.