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Kölner Miniatum Information & Instructions


Kolner Miniatum


Kolner Miniatum is a unique gilding size that is ideal for gilding gold leaf on paper, degreased vellum, leather, illuminated manuscripts and many flexible surfaces like foil or plastic.  Miniatum size gives you a very bright gilding surface that is almost equal to burnishing with an agate burnisher.

Miniatum is the ideal size for gilding illuminated manuscripts. The elastic nature of the size assures a long lasting gilded surface. The turning of illuminated pages will not cause the leaf to delaminate.

The highest quality of acid free, heavy weight papers should be used as the base surface. Smooth surface papers are preferred to achieve a glass like finish. The textured surface of some papers will be visible in the gilding (this is sometimes desired).
 If a smooth gilding surface is desired on textured paper, apply four coatsof Miniatum diluted with 15% to 20% water. Smooth the surface with alcohol before applying Miniatum.

The Size can normally be applied directly to a smooth, dry, minimally absorbent substrate with a fine brush or a drawing pen. All porous surfaces should be tested for compatibility. E.g. coated papers may require sealing with a lacquer to prevent buckling.
 Miniatum will provide the best results when the size forms a slightly elevated bead on the surface. The size must be thoroughly dry before applying the leaf and it will remain ready for gilding for up to 20 hours. Due to the long open time, overnight drying is advisable to assure the highest degree of luster. The minimal drying time is 3 to 5 hours depending on thickness of layer, temperature and humidity. Imitation leaf may have a shorter drying time.



Apply patent/transfer leaf or roll leaf by laying the leaf on the surface and rubbing the paper backing with a Kolner Tissue, or a ball of cotton. After finishing gilding, lay a piece of the transfer paper over the gilded area and lightly press with a cotton ball to ensure uniform adhesion. Then burnish lightly in one direction with a Kolner Tissue. If using Loose Leaf, lay the leaf on the applied Minimatum size and then place a tissue paper from the book over the leaf. With a cotton ball, gently rub the tissue which will push the gold into the size.


The ideal application temperature is between 60 to 75 degrees. You can apply with a brush or with a drawing pen. You can thin the size by adding up to 5% water.

Old Coatings of Miniatum can be reactivated for gilding by applying a thin coat of Instacoll Activator. To prevent oxidation of composition leaf and silver apply a thin coat of acrylic lacquer, preferably water based. However, low carat value gold, silver, copper and imitation leaf is not recommended, since they must be sealed against oxidation, and the sealer will not have the same flexible properties as the Miniatum.


Clean brushes with soap and water. Always test all materials and procedures before attempting to perform the work on the final object!



Avoid frost, heat and sunlight.



Miniatum is not hazardous, but can cause skin or eye irritation. Protective clothing is recommended, and it should be kept away from food and drink.
Contains Butylcarbitol. Make sure sufficient ventilation while working with this product.

A complete safety data sheet from Kölner Products can be viewed here.


The conditions, methods of handling and use of this product are beyond our control and may be beyond our knowledge.  For this reason, we do not assume responsibility and expressly disclaim liability for loss, damage or expenses arising out of or in any way connected to the handling, storage, use or disposal of this product.