This section will show you how to make a pounce bag.
A pounce bag is used with oil gilding. There are many uses for it. Its primary use is to prevent gold from sticking where you don’t want it. When gilding an intricate painted design, a pounce bag can be used to show where the size is applied, helping to outline a design.
Take a small square of clean tight weave cotton. This should be approximately 15cm square. In this instance, I have used an old shirt. As you can see, my taste in shirts is quite terrible and so in this case scissors were justified in cutting it up. In the centre of the square, place a desert spoon full of gilders whiting. The whiting is extremely fine and upon agitation will pass through the fine weave of the cotton shirt.
Pull all the corners of the square up together, ensuring the whiting is firmly in the middle and that there are no gaps at the top. Tie a piece of strong string around the top of the pouch using a ‘clove hitch’ knot. The loose cloth bunched up is put through the two loops. Place both the loops over the top of the bag and pull the ends tightly.
Cut the ends of the string close to the bag. The bag can now be lightly ‘pounced’ over the surface of whatever you are working on to create a resist, preventing the gold form sticking on these areas. The layer of chalk is extremely fine and once all work is complete, a light brushing with a mop should remove any residue.