This is how the stump looked when I got it
After some elbow grease and some silver leaf...
Spray on Gloss Acrylic
Silver or Aluminum leaf
Soft bristled brush
Wipe on Poly
The step by step
- Use a scraper to remove any bark that can easily fall off, and any debris or sap left on.
- Using an electric sander even off the top and bottom of the stump. I sanded just until the top and bottom were smooth, since i didn't mind if it wasn't perfectly level.
- If any areas of your stump are still soft, scrape off anything that comes off easily, and apply a wood hardener ( I used Elmer's wood hardener) and let dry for 24 hours.
- Because I was keeping the bark intact, I gave the entire stump a coating of spray adhesive and let it dry 24 hours.
- To give a smoother surface to apply the silver leaf, coat the entire stump with Krylon clear gloss and let dry for a few hours.
- Starting with small sections, apply your sizing and wait 15 minutes for it to cure.
- Using a soft bristle brush pick up a leaf of silver, lie it on over the sizing and gently brush it until it there are not little flakes of silver coming off.
- When applying the next leaf, be sure to slightly overlap the previous leaf, and brush until there are no more small flakes of silver coming off. I find it can help to move in a circular motion over the seams to help blend them.
- Repeat steps 6 to 8 until the entire stump is finished.
- Apply two coats of wipe on poly, and let cure for 24 hours.
If you prefer the au natural look, there is a great tutorial on Design*Sponge by Karen of The Art of Doing Stuff. A great tutorial on silver leafing can be found on Little Green Notebook.