Just a quick post on a developing Idea: folding Origami out of real silver or gold. It'd make a perfect gift with a really exclusive feel to it. The first test was successfull with only some problems remaining to be solved...
As is turnes out getting leaf-silver (or leaf-gold) as a "transfer medium" mounted on really really thin parchment paper is less of a problem. Thing is - you don't want to touch the gold/silver itself, it would stick on your finger and you'd tear the whole thing apart. So we searched nice thin paper on which the gold/silver leaf would be mounted using a special glue (german: Anlegemilch).
To get the paper not to get bumpy when applying the liquid (read: glue) we used a old pump-action parfume sprayer, cleaned it and sprayed the glue on the paper which was stiffly mounted to a clean and plane surface using tape. We then waited until the glue was almost dry, then unpacked the silver, put it on the paper and "rubbed" it on. Then wait a short while for the rest of the glue to dry, get rid of the tape, cut the paper to fit the silver and ... well - thats it. Fold origmi as usual with a little bit more caution :P.
To seal the silver from oxidation we use Lascaux matte varnish - which turned out to be a bad idea. It made the shiny nice silver look like aluminum foil - tinker here. For Gold that'd be a no-problem because it simply doesn't oxidate (visibly).