How to Embellish a Glass Vase With Gold Foil

By Gillian Ellis ; Updated September 15, 2017
Create a professional looking vase in just a few simple steps.

Whether you’re hosting a party or planning a wedding, the centerpiece you choose to decorate with is very important. A centerpiece can pull together the look of a party and is the main visual your guests will gather around. Renting centerpieces can get expensive and buying multiple vessels for your wedding is not a budget-friendly option. Instead, follow the steps below to learn how to take a simple glass vase from blah to amazing in just a few steps!

Things You'll Need

  • Clear glass vase
  • Adhesive
  • Sponge brush
  • Gold leaf
  • Bristle brush
  • Sealer

1. Clean Your Vase

Clean and dry your vase before adding adhesive.

Before beginning this project, clean and dry your vase. Let your vase dry completely before adding adhesive or it will not stick. While you are waiting for your vase to dry, lay down newspaper to create a workspace. Gold foil can get very messy and is difficult to clean off counters.

2. Add Glue To Your Vase

Apply glue using a sponge brush and let dry for 2-3 minutes.

Before applying glue to your vase decide where you want the gold foil to go. Gold foil will stick to wherever there is adhesive and can be a mess to remove. If you are planning to use your vase for fresh flowers, cover enough area of the glass so that the flower stems are covered, creating a clean floral arrangement. Using a sponge brush, apply glue directly to your vase. The glue used for gold leaf is very watery so let it dry for 2-3 minutes before applying the foil. This time allows the glue to get a bit tacky, which helps everything stick.

3. Apply Gold Foil

Apply the gold foil evenly around the vase.

Keep the gold foil attached to the parchment paper and carefully make contact with the vase. Use your bare hands as gold foil is very sticky and rubber gloves can easily stick to the glue. Apply the entire sheet of gold foil at once rather than applying piece by piece. If you apply in small pieces the gold foil tends to crumple. Work your way around the vase applying the foil until all areas are filled. Your vase will look very messy at this stage, but do not panic!

4. Finish Your Gold Foil Vase

Evenly cover the gold foil with sealer.

Once you are happy with your gold application, it's time to apply sealer. There are two different style options to finish your vase. To create the traditional "crackled" look shown here, apply sealer with a bristle brush immediately after applying gold foil. Press down a little as you cover the vase with sealer so that some of the foil is wiped off, creating a vintage look. The second option is a cleaner look. For this style let the gold foil dry completely before gently applying sealer. While your sealer is drying the gold will dull in color but this comes back when everything is dry. Make sure to cover all of the gold with sealer so that it is water safe.

5. Add Flowers to Your Gold-Foiled Vase

Your completed vase is ready for flowers!

Once the sealer has dried your vase is finished and ready for flowers. Your completed vase will resemble a professional-looking, store-bought version and no one will know how simple it was to create!

About the Author

Gillian Ellis is a wedding lifestyle blogger, photographer and stylist. Gillian's work has appeared in many National publications including "Style Me Pretty," "The Everygirl," "Best Friends for Frosting" and "Southern Weddings Magazine." Based in Charleston, SC, she shares DIY projects and wedding inspiration on her blog Coastal Bride.