Gold Foil Hack - Feat. Tombow Mono Liquid Glue

Hey y'all! So, today I have a fun project for you! As lots of you know, I have an Etsy Shop where I sell hand-foiled gold prints. S O   M A N Y blog readers have asked me to do a tutorial on perfect foiling (I'm thinking of doing an online class on it? Would you like that? Comment below!), but until that time, there is a way you can foil without spending like $300+ in equipment and supplies! Cause yeah, that's {my} reality of perfect foiling. 

What is this magical hack, you ask? 


But not just any glue! The glue I'm using in this tutorial is perfect for applying foil, but not all glues are equal. To my knowledge, you can't ask a cheap Elmer's Glue to do the same thing as you're asking this glue to do. However, I haven't used any other brands, so you'll have to experiment or research what other brands would work with this method.

What is this glue? I've really built it up, so it better deliver, amirite?

It's the Tombow Mono Multi Liquid Glue (I have mine in the XL Size)

Disclaimer: I'm not sponsored by Tombow USA, but I am a Brand Ambassador, which means I get cool Tombow products in the mail each month to blog about! 

Ok, now that you know about the glue, let's get into the tutorial...because, I actually made something!

Here are the products I used:


In this tutorial, I made two 5x7 decorative prints in two different 'styles.' To begin, I anchored down both my kraft paper and watercolor paper with some washi tape that will be easy to remove when I am ready. The reason for doing this is so my paper doesn't warp when I apply water and wet ink to it. 

I'm going to be working on the Kraft Paper print first. I decided to do a floral theme. I chose the colors Green (245), Red (845), and a Golden Yellow (026). I'm scribbling some ink from each of these pens onto my blending palette.

After that step is complete, I'm going to spray the palette with clean water, so I can begin using the ink as watercolor. I didn't get a great photo of it, so that step is not included here, but here is another tutorial where I used this technique.

Now, I'm gonna get to paintin'!

My painting style here was very loose. When painting the flowers, I did some in all red, and some in a mixture of the yellow and red. There is really no formula here, except to paint blobs that kind of resemble flowers. <<< yeah, I know! Easier said than done.

Once that has dried completely, grab your glue! I am using the 'precision' or the 'pen tip' end of this glue so I can draw fine lines of glue where I want my foil to appear. In the second tutorial, we'll explore the other side! 

Draw on your glue wherever your heart tells you to! Now, wait for it to dry. And by dry, I mean, until it's 'clear.'

As you can see here, the glue is slowly turning from white to clear. When all the glue is clear, it will become VERY tacky and that's when you know it's ready for the foil. 

You can also clearly see that I couldn't wait for all my glue to turn clear (which is a mistake). But, anyway, when you're ready, gently lay your foil on top of the glued areas, and press down with your finger, gently but firmly burnishing the foil onto the glue. Once burnished to your liking, gently peel the foil up. 

And this is what I got once I had applied foil to all the glued areas! Yay!

I displayed this little print on top of my shipping supply cabinet. What do you think?
I like it...but not as much as I like this next print!

I began by laying down my colors onto the blending palette. I used, from top to bottom, a Pink (815), an Orange (Number Not Available), and the yellow and red from the first tutorial. I took a large, flat paintbrush, and began brushing the color on in horizontal stripes, as seen below!

I left two spaces where I wanted my gold foil brush strokes to appear.

Next, I grabbed my glue! I'm using the 'broad tip' here because I want to apply quite a bit more glue than in the previous print.  

I applied my glue pretty liberally, then used an old paintbrush (you don't want to ruin a nice brush here!) to flatten out the glue. In hindsight, I should have applied quite a bit'll see why in a bit!

After waiting for my glue to go from white and liquidus to clear and tacky, I applied my foil and burnished it with my fingers. Once I had done that, I pulled the foil up. Now, I wish I had applied more glue because I wanted a more solid appearance of foil. To remedy this, I added just a little bit more on top of the existing foil and tried again. 

This is the finished product! I wish I had gone back and added yet even MORE glue, but I do like the way this turned out!

I hung this print on my newly-painted peg board and I really love the little pop of color it adds! I haven't yet re-stocked my peg board, so it looks a little bare here. If you'd like to see a blog post about the peg boards I use in my studio, let me know! I'd love to show you some organizational tips...especially since peg boards are SUCH an affordable option!

Ok, y'all! That's it for today! Let me know what you thought about this tutorial in the comments below, and OH YEAH!!