Gilding & Restoration Services
What Is Gilding?
Gilding is the application of thin sheets of metal (often genuine gold) as a means of surface decoration. Gilding is commonly seen on decorative items such as picture frames, mirrors, furniture, and fine art such as illuminated manuscripts, sculpture and icons. Architectural uses include interior and exterior applications and signage. There are two primary methods of gilding – water gilding and oil gilding. For more information, visit the Society of Gilders.
- Conservation, restoration, repair, and gilding of aging picture frames and furniture items.
- We also hand-build new custom frames and finish them with fine gilding.
- We can create contemporary style frames, or replicate antique frames hundreds of years old.
Our experience includes fine gilded finishes on architectural and sculpture projects, both indoor and outdoor applications. Within these projects, we have employed every kindof leaf, from genuine gold and silver, to metal leaf (i.e. composition gold, copper, variegated, and aluminum).
Past and Present Clients:
- The Parthenon’s Athena
- Nashville’s Schermerhorn Symphony Center
- Nashville’s Frist Center Museum
- The Musica Statue at the Music City Round-About
- Tennessee State Museum
- Tennessee State Capitol
- Cheekwood Fine Arts Center
- Vanderbilt University
- Belle Meade Mansion
- Two Rivers Mansion
- The Filson Club of Louisville, Kentucky
- Numerous private homes and businesses throughout the Southeast
Reed’s Gold Leaf are long-time members of the Society of Gilders and have served on the organization’s board.
Frame Restoration & Gilding
Belle Meade Plantation
Busch Estate – We were able to save the finish on the major parts of this frame, make needed repairs and match new gilding to the original gilded finish.
Harry Hill Painting Frame – We saved the original gilding on this frame, made necessary repairs which included having the calligraphy re-painted on the liner. Then touched up the finish to match the original finish.
Gilded Mirrors & Verre Eglomise (Glass Gilding)
Verre Eglomise – from the French term meaning glass gilded. It also incorporates painting portions of the glass in reverse.
Decorative Glass and Gilded Mirrors. The pieces shown here incorporate gilding with various karat gold leaf, silver leaf, aluminum and composition leaf. These pieces are available for purchase, prices range from $20 and up. Please email to inquire of availability and specific price.
Kitchen Backsplash – The backsplash is done in aluminum leaf oil size gilded on the glass. Glass back splash can be attached with hardware or attached to the sub straight with mastic if you do not wish to show hardware.
Additional Examples – Shown here (below) are just a few more samples of gilding on glass. Almost any design can be Incorporated into Verre Eglomise.
Gilding Supplies & Instruction
Restoration and Gilding Supplies
Please note: Prices listed are subject to change at any time without notice. If you don’t see an item you’re looking for, give us a call as we may be able to get it for you. For ordering and all other inquiries call us at (615) 294-6113.
The Gilding Screen Frame
As seen in The Gilders Tip journal – Winter 2015 volume 29 No.1 Great for any flat surface gilding. Water gilding, glass gilding and oil size gilding. $45 +S&H Email or call your order in.
For light tack used with gilders tips and gilders screen frames. Contains all natural ingredients. $3 per tube +S&H
Appx. 5 1/2″ x 5 1/2″
25 leaves/book… 20 books/pkg.=(500) leaves
- Copper; Call for Price
- Variegated Red; Call for Price
- Variegated Blue; Call for Price
Bulk Metal Leaf:
Appx. 6 1/4″ x 6 1/4″
- Italian Schlag Bulk – 10,000 shts
- Aluminum Bulk – 5,000 shts
- Aluminum Bulk – 500 shts
Genuine Silver and Gold Leaf:
3 3/8″ x 3 3/8″ leaves
25 leaves/book… 20 books/pkg (500) leaves
- Silver; Call for Price
- 24K Gold; Call for Price
- 23.75K Deep Double Gold; Call for Price
- 23K Deep Gold; Call for Price
- 23K Patent; Call for Price
- 22K Deep Gold; Call for Price
- 22K Patent; Call for Price
- 18K Lemon Gold; Call for Price
- 12K White Gold; Call for Price
- Palladium; Call for Price
- Wunda Gold Size: Water Base-15 min. to 3 hr. pint Qt. Gal.
- LeFranc Mixtion Size: Oil, 3hour 75ml.; 1 Ltr
- LeFranc Mixtion Size: Oil, 12hour 250ml. 1 Ltr.
- Rolco Slow Oil Size: 1 pint
- Gilder’s Mop: – Call for Sizes & Prices
- 250g Shellac Flakes: Light or Dark
- 1 lb. Rabbit Skin Glue: (Pebbles)
- Horse Hair Cloth:
- 3.5″ Gilder’s Tip: Call for Sizes & Prices
- Gilder’s Pillow:
- Gilder’s Knife: Double Edge
- Agate Burnishers: Assorted styles, sizes 1-18,
- Please call prices and details.
- Quick Wood Epoxy Putty:
- Sil-Tech Modeling Putty: 5kg pail
- Rotten Stone
- Liberon Black Bison Wax
- Preval Sprayer: (sprayer unit only);
- SIMPLE GUIDE TO GOLD LEAFING by Lou Reed $12
Our instructor, Micki Cavanah, teaches all facets of restoration and gilding. Classes are geared toward the individual student’s choice of subjects. Classes are one on one and dates can be scheduled according to your needs. Tuition is $450 per day, per student. Experience has shown that a 2 to 3 day class will suffice for almost any student. Contact Micki for more information.
Reed’s Gold Leaf Studios began from within the original family picture framing business, Reed’s Custom Framing. The frame shop opened its doors in 1968, started by Micki Cavanah’s parents, Don and Lou Reed. One of the local clients stated that he had been traveling to Atlanta, GA for all of his gilding needs. Finding it difficult to turn a client away for such services, Lou decided the natural thing to do would be to learn about gilding. At that time, there were very few gilders, and even fewer sources of instruction. It seemed that gilding was becoming a dying art. However, through perseverance, Lou learned the craft of gilding and restoration. She passed along her knowledge to many others through the years, including Micki and her husband, Mitchell Cavanah. For more than 20 years, Micki and Mitchell have continued the fine tradition of gilding that came from such humble beginnings.
Micki and Mitchell are long-time members of the prestigious Society of Gilders of which Micki currently serves as Vice-President. Both are well-respected educators in the arts of restoration, gilding, and the design and creation of one-of-a-kind, museum quality picture frames.