I'm wondering whether it's possible to get vinyl with metallic gold colour on the adhesive side? Let me explain why on the adhesive side.

My application

I would like to design a kitchen worktop glass backsplash with some Klimt-inspired vector graphics. I would like to combine frosted glass-like look with gold (Klimt was using it regularly in his paintings).

I could design the simple frosted-like effect using such cut vinyl so some parts would have the clear-glass look while others would be frosted. The problem I see here is that backsplash is very close to white wall which could create insufficient contrast between both surfaces.

That's why I was thinking of combining frosted look with gold so in all places where glass should be clear there would be gold and frosted elsewhere.

Because this is kitchen worktop area, the front should only be glass. Everything should be on the back side so one wouldn't be able to damage it in any way shape or form.

As vinyl would be attached to the back of glass all that one sees is the adhesive side of vinyl (unless applied in some unusual way).

The main problem

The main problem that I see is the lack of sufficient contrast between clear and frosted glass due to close proximity between glass backsplash and kitchen wall. If anybody has ever done this before or can test now on a small sheet of glass and using this translucent frosted vinyl I'd be extremely happy to see results against a white painted wall in a form of photographs.

Any better suggestions?

3 Answers 3


You will have a hard time finding metallic vinyls where the adhesive side is suitable for viewing. Usually the adhesive is on a paper based layer and would be white, not gold.

There are a few ways you can achieve this affect though:

  1. Apply an optically clear print mount adhesive to the front (metallic side) of the vinyl, then have it cut. Basically you add your own double sided adhesive to the front of the metallic film. When you assemble the backsplash, apply the metallic vinyl first, and then your frosted vinyl. The exposed side of the glass backsplash would be just the glass, then the metallic vinyl, then the frosted. NOTE: This will leave a 'halo' around the metallic shape where the frosted will not be able to touch the glass.

  2. Two layers of 1/2 as thick instead of one layer of full thickness glass. Apply standard cut metallic vinyl to the front of the back sheet of glass, and then the frosted on the back of the back sheet of glass. NOTE: this will eliminate the need for the print mount layer applied to the metalic film, as well as the 'halo' that happens when you overlay two sheets of vinyl.

  3. Similar to #2 above, but with the full thickness glass sheet on front, and the back sheet is something like Vivak or clear PET G. The Vivak might be frosted enough on its own for your purposes.

    Working on the backside of glass will show every single imperfection in the application. Any bubble, scratch, spec of dirt, etc. It is a very unforgiving process, but the results are spectacular when done well.

    Beware that anything you build for a kitchen needs to be able to take some abuse. Stuff happens in a kitchen; pots and pans get smashed against things, knives and utensils get tossed around, etc. You can't skimp on materials here or it will come back and bite you.

  • The idea of cutting metallic first and put an uncut frosted vinyl over is a very good one. Except for the halo, you're mentioning it. The thinner the metallic vinyl the lesser the halo. AD#1: I'm not sure how'd you apply the clear adhesive to metallic and cut it afterwards? The paper on the backside makes cutting possible, as it serves as a fixed platform on which vinyl gets cut. AD#2 That's a clever idea, although these sheets of glass wouldn't be bound. I'm not sure whether that'd be an issue. This would also make an undesired 3D effect because of the distance between vinyls. Aug 15, 2014 at 14:59
  • The halo is inevitable when you overlay materials like that. Yes, the thinner the film, the smaller the halo, but it will always be there. Metallics will be near the thickest of films, by the way. Also, as materials age and contract, the halo will grow slightly over time. AD#1: The print mount is double sided and has a release layer. So you apply it to the metallic, then cut it. When ready, you pull the release layer off of the metallic face. AD#2: The sheets will definitely have to be in a channel of some sort.
    – TunaMaxx
    Aug 15, 2014 at 15:50
  • I thought metallic vinyl would be thinner due to material used. AD#1: Can you provide some internet link to this kind of print mount, because I'm not sure I understand the process? But to add to AD#2 I suppose this would be the best possible alternative as one could use thinnest possible glass on the backside (or even Vivak) to lessen 3D effect and completely remove halo. But My metallic vinyl idea arose mainly because of the contrast hesitation I have. Can you please re-read my edited question and see if you have any additional input to your already valuable answer? Aug 15, 2014 at 16:15
  • From my experience, metallic films are always significantly thicker than standard vinyl. There may be products that are thinner, we just don't work with them. Regarding SD#1: I had in this mind: shop.ndgraphics.com/… It's just wide a roll of double sided tape essentially, but it is optically clear. When applied to the face of the metallic, you won't see it. AD#2: With something like Vivak, you won't have the 'halo' or any 3D effect. Or even use plain old PET G with a layer of frosted on the front face, with the metallic on top of that.
    – TunaMaxx
    Aug 15, 2014 at 19:55
  • One more thing: As for the 3D effect, that is one area that we actually exploit in many cases. You can create some pleasing subtle effect when you embrace the thickness between the first and second surfaces of the glass.
    – TunaMaxx
    Aug 15, 2014 at 19:57

Typically when someone says they are going to do a frosted-glass decal they would use something like Oracal's Translucent Etched Glass Cal vinyl which would render something like this:

enter image description here

I reference Oracal because they do have a gold etched vinyl, I've never used the gold, but I've used their silver tones of times. I will say for safety purposes, if you're cutting this to be viewed on an exterior window/surface I would suggest a reverse cut. Reverse cut is when the vinyl would be applied on the inside so someone will not be able to pull it off. Ive done this before when I had some scrap 1" - 2" acrylic pieces and I made a coffee table out of it. I cut a design out and placed a reverse cut so it wouldn't get scratched or scuffed when someone placed something on it.

enter image description here

Diagram source

cut golden vinyl and attach it over froste one

To this comment, there are some gold vinyls that do have an adhesive but off the top of my head I do not remember the brands. I would suggest contacting a few sign companies and ask. If you go with all frosted vinyl that may solve your problem and I hope this helps.

Also, similar to the suggested you could just order frosted material in a thickness and apply it directly and not worry about a reverse cut:

enter image description here


  • Your image of a window with cut Oracal is exactly what I'm after. But. All you can see is the frosted glass where Oracal is being applied and clear glass where is't being cut out. This works very well on windows. I'm sceptical about the effect on kitchen worktop backsplash, because glass will be very close to white wall and I'm afraid that the clear glass parts won't have enough contrast with frosted parts. That's why I would like to put metallic gold in place where clear glass should be seen and frosted everywhere else. Aug 15, 2014 at 14:53
  • Can you please re-read my almost completely rephrased question and add anything to your already valuable answer? I may completely ditch the metallic vinyl idea if contrast can be sufficient - see my main problem. Aug 15, 2014 at 16:11

Simply said, yes 2 sided RTA gold vinyl. We also have a way to hit prism with yellow and laminate the roll after exiting the Vutek.

  • 3
    Hello James. Thanks for your answer. It's a bit short and vague at the moment though. What is 2-sided RTA gold vinyl, and why would it be useful to OP? Who is 'we'? What is a Vutek? Could you edit your answer to include more information? Thanks!
    – PieBie
    May 28, 2021 at 8:09

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