As a novice as well as a relative "newbie" I hope that this idea
will still help anyone wanting to plate leaves - I know of a way to
If you work with precious metals clay, you can make a "slip" from
the gold PMC, by adding water to it and stirring it. You can then
paint this onto your leaf. Wait for the first layer to dry
*thoroughly* and then paint on another layer of slip. You will need
at least 15-20 layers. When the piece is fired, the leaf burns away
leaving your gold "leaf". Of course this will be a very soft piece
if done with PMC gold. (it also works with PMC silver).
Your leaf needs to be fairly dry before starting - one picked fresh
from the tree is not suitable, because when you fire it the moisture
remaining in the leaf will cause your product to crack. "Skeleton
leaves" are ideal for this purpose, but are generally much larger
than one would want.
You can paint this slip onto any number of materials, as long as
they are burnable in the kiln (and preferably non-toxic).
I hope this helps, or perhaps generates more ideas.