Gold-leaf is made by beating gold into an extremely thin sheet with a thickness of 0.1 to 0.125 millionths of a meter. It is so thin that it will disappear when you rub it with your fingers.
The production of gold leaf started in Kanazawa at the end of the 16th century. The Maeda family, who ruled the Kaga Clan (the present Ishikawa and Toyama areas) in feudal times, invited many artisans to Kanazawa. The city is still known as the city of gold leaf and has preserved and maintained the industry’s techniques and culture.
In Japan, gold leaf is used for handicrafts, such as vessels and ornaments, as well as the decoration of temples, shrines, Buddhist altars, and Buddhist instruments. Gold leaf stores in Kanazawa sell a variety of products, such as tissues using special paper used for the production of gold leaf, cosmetics containing gold leaf, and food containing gold leaf, besides gold leaf handicraft including chinaware, woodenware, ornaments, and accessories.
Talk to us about including a class in gold-leaf decorating and learn more about this fascinating traditional craft.