Traditional Gilding (Level 2)

No previous experience is required for the traditional gilding workshop. You will be introduced to a very old decorative technique, invented 4,500 years ago in ancient Egypt and only practicing traditional gilding can produce a full appreciation for this technique. Through this hands-on class, you are introduced to a range of gold leafing skills. Working from bare wood to the final product, we will prepare sample boards, prime and gild frames, make ornaments and practice finishing techniques. This class also includes a brief introduction to the history of picture frames.

Topics presented in this class include:

  • traditional gilding materials, tools and techniques
  • weighing, measuring and mixing
  • surface preparation and planned application of oil and water gilding
  • gesso texturing, re-cutting and other special effects
  • making molds and ornaments
  • the application of gold, silver and metal leaf
  • matte and burnished finishes
  • advanced leafing techniques
  • sealing, toning and aging

Materials for the course are provided to the participants and participants will be advised beforehand on which gilding tools to bring. 

Traditional Gilding is a prerequisite for taking Gilding Conservation (offered again in 2024).

Course Dates

July 8-12, 2024 (CONFIRMED TO RUN - 1 SPOT OPEN!)

Course Fee


Early Registration



Hubert Baija

About the Instructor

Hubert Baija is an avid instructor of gilding techniques, restoration, and the history of picture frames. He teaches hands-on workshops and online seminars for mid-career professionals at the Beloit College Center for Collections Care, and conservation Master students at the University of Amsterdam. After thirty years as the Senior Conservator of Frames and Gilding at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, he has continued working as an independent researcher and consultant. Hubert is a Professional Member of the American Institute for Conservation and a former co-chair of the Wood, Furniture and Lacquer Working Group of the International Council of Museums Conservation Committee.

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